The short answer is – no, Minecraft Bedrock Edition is not free on PC. To get Bedrock on Windows 10 or 11, you‘ll need to purchase it separately from Minecraft: Java Edition. However, by converting an existing Java account to a Microsoft account, veteran Java players can claim a free copy of Bedrock.
With that quick summary out of the way, let‘s dive deeper into the details on how to get Bedrock Edition on PC, whether there are any legitimate free options, and how it compares to Java Edition.
A Quick History of Minecraft Editions
To understand whether Bedrock comes free, it helps to know the history of Minecraft editions:
Minecraft originally launched in 2009 as Minecraft Java Edition for PC. Later it expanded to consoles and mobile as Minecraft: Bedrock Edition, with support for cross-platform multiplayer between these platforms.
In 2016, Microsoft acquired Mojang Studios and the Minecraft IP. Under Microsoft, Bedrock became the primary cross-platform edition, while Java remained exclusive to PC.
So in summary:
- Java Edition is the original PC game from 2009 to present.
- Bedrock Edition came later as the cross-platform version for consoles and mobile.
- Under Microsoft, Bedrock became the main cross-platform edition while Java remained PC-only.
This history explains why Java and Bedrock are separate purchases today. Java was originally just for PC. Bedrock came later as a new cross-platform version.
Purchasing Options for Bedrock on PC
Today to get Bedrock Edition on your Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC, you have two main purchase options:
Buy Minecraft for Windows from the Microsoft Store for $26.95. This bundle includes BOTH Java and Bedrock, so it‘s the best value.
Buy Minecraft Bedrock Edition directly from Minecraft.net for $26.95. This is just Bedrock by itself.
So in summary, you can either buy Bedrock standalone or bundled with Java. But there is no way to get Bedrock by itself free for PC.
As your friendly gaming expert, I always recommend the Minecraft for Windows bundle. For just $27, you get both major Minecraft editions for PC. That‘s a steal!
Can You Get Bedrock Free by Owning Java?
This is one of the most common questions around Bedrock for PC – if you already own Java Edition, do you qualify for Bedrock free?
The answer is yes, if you convert your Mojang account to a Microsoft account, which unlocks access to a free copy of Bedrock.
Here are step-by-step instructions to convert your Java account and claim your free Bedrock:
Visit your Mojang account page and click "Convert to Microsoft account."
Enter your Microsoft/Xbox Live credentials if prompted or create a new Microsoft account.
After conversion, install the Xbox Insider Hub app from the Microsoft Store.
From the Insider Hub, find the Minecraft Beta program and join it.
Install Minecraft from the Microsoft Store app. This will now be the Bedrock version of Minecraft!
So in summary, veteran Java players on PC can unlock Bedrock Edition for free through the conversion process. But this is the ONLY way to get Bedrock free if you already own Minecraft.
What About Consoles – Can They Unlock Bedrock on PC?
Another common question – if you own Minecraft on Xbox or PlayStation, do you also get access to Bedrock for free on your PC?
Unfortunately, that is not the case. Here‘s a quick breakdown:
- Own Minecraft on Xbox: No free Bedrock on PC
- Own Minecraft on PlayStation: No free Bedrock on PC
- Own Minecraft on Switch: No free Bedrock on PC
- Own Java Edition on PC: Yes you can convert to get free Bedrock
So owning Minecraft on Xbox, PlayStation, Switch or mobile does NOT grant you a free copy of Bedrock Edition for Windows 10/11. The only way is via converting an existing Java account.
What About Gift Codes or Promotions for Free Bedrock?
Occasionally, Microsoft gives away free codes or gifts for Minecraft Bedrock Edition as part of promotions or contests. However, these free gift code offers are rare.
As a gaming deals expert, I occasionally see Bedrock codes given away with Microsoft products or at gaming events like MineCon. But there‘s no reliable way to score one of these elusive free codes.
Your best bet is to follow gaming news sites and look for Bedrock giveaway announcements. But I wouldn‘t count on getting it free unless you convert an existing Java account.
Pricing Comparison – Bedrock vs. Java Editions
For anyone new to Minecraft, here is a quick pricing comparison between Bedrock and Java editions for PC:
|Minecraft Java Edition||$26.95|
|Minecraft Bedrock Edition||$26.95|
|Minecraft for Windows (Java + Bedrock)||$26.95|
As you can see, both individual editions cost $26.95. So there is no price difference between buying Java or Bedrock alone.
However, since the Minecraft for Windows bundle includes BOTH editions for the same $26.95, it‘s undoubtedly the best value. You get full access to cross-platform Bedrock and moddable Java in one purchase.
Performance and Gameplay Comparison
Beyond pricing, a key consideration in choosing between Bedrock and Java is performance and gameplay experience. Here‘s an overview:
Minecraft Java Edition
- Only works on Windows PC
- Larger modding community for customization
- Can support shader packs for enhanced graphics
- Typically requires a more powerful PC for best performance
- Supports hardcore fan-run servers
Minecraft Bedrock Edition
- Cross-platform play with mobile, consoles, and Windows 10 PC
- Designed to run well on low-end hardware
- Offers in-game purchases for content like textures
- Official Realms servers hosted by Mojang/Microsoft
- Usually receives updates first
- Java has more customization and mods but needs a stronger PC.
- Bedrock focuses on cross-platform play and performance.
So weigh your priorities – if you care most about mods and playing on custom servers, Java is likely the better choice. If cross-platform play matters most, go with Bedrock.
The Verdict – Which Edition Should You Get?
So should you get Bedrock or Java Edition on your Windows PC? Here are my recommendations:
- For cross-platform play, get Bedrock Edition.
- For mods/customization, get Java Edition.
- For the best value, get Minecraft for Windows (both editions).
As a fellow Minecraft fan, I personally recommend Minecraft for Windows to get the full experience with both editions.
But focus on cross-platform play with Bedrock if that matters most to you. Ultimately you can‘t go wrong with either edition – both provide countless hours of blocky fun!
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some other common questions about Minecraft Bedrock Edition on PC:
Is there a free trial for Bedrock?
No free trials exist, but you can play 5 game sessions of the trial via Game Pass Ultimate.
What is the Windows 10/11 version called?
The Bedrock version for Windows 10 and 11 is simply called "Minecraft for Windows."
Can you play Bedrock offline?
Yes, Bedrock supports offline play. You‘ll need to login online once to download the game.
Does Bedrock have servers?
Yes, it has official Realms servers from Mojang in addition to partner servers.
Can you mod Bedrock Edition?
Mod support is more limited compared to Java, but Bedrock does allow some addons and skins.
The Bottom Line
While extremely fun, unfortunately Minecraft Bedrock Edition is not free on PC. You‘ll need to purchase it to enjoy cross-platform play.
But existing Java players can claim a free copy of Bedrock when converting their Mojang account to Microsoft. For everyone else, I highly recommend grabbing the Minecraft for Windows bundle to get both editions for the same great price.
Thanks for reading! Let me know if you have any other questions.