However, businesses users still have to pay license fees.
Microsoft is reportedly considering making operating systems including Windows Phone free for smartphones and small tablets.
As part of efforts to boost the company’s market share, the tech firm could offer its Windows OS free for consumer mobiles and tablets with a screen size range below nine inches for the consumer market.
It is believes to be a measure to battle Google’s free Android platform for market share, and comes a week after Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella rolled out new versions of Word, PowerPoint and Excel applications for Apple’s iPad.
Microsoft operating system group vice president Joe Belfiore noted that Windows OS will be free for Internet of Things devices, which are the small gadgets capable of connecting to the web and process information.
While makers of smartphones and tablets would no longer have to shell out for Windows Phone licenses, business users would.
So far, phone and tablet makers were charged between $5 and $15 per device to deploy Windows OS.
In addition, Microsoft has been reportedly trialling a free, economical version of ‘Windows 8.1 with Bing,’ incorporating Microsoft apps and services targeting Windows 7 users.