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What is Windows 10 S?

Accepted submission by takyon at 2017-05-02 22:19:12


Microsoft has announced a new version of Windows called Windows 10 S []. It only runs apps from the Windows Store, and is positioned between Windows 10 Home and Windows 10 Pro, both of which can run third party applications. Microsoft also announced a new line of Surface laptops [] running the OS. The laptops have been described as competing with either Google's Chromebooks [] or Apple's MacBook Air [], and aimed at students:

Windows 10 S is Windows 10 with its wings slightly clipped: it can only run apps from the Windows Store, disabling compatibility with the enormous breadth of Windows programs out there, which in the educational context translates to better security, consistent performance, focus for students, and improved battery life. It's cheaper and less versatile than Windows 10 Pro, which is exactly what schools are looking for (and the thing that's had them gravitating toward Google's Chrome OS [] in recent times).

[...] Immediately upon its introduction, Windows 10 S spans a price range from $189 to $2,199 (for the top Surface Laptop spec). So is this a straightforward and affordable solution for mass educational deployment? Or is it a super streamlined operating system for powering extremely desirable and long-lasting laptops? Yes. Microsoft's answer to both of those things is yes. It's not impossible to achieve both goals with the same software, of course, but it is difficult to position the OS in people's minds.

[...] The Windows on ARM effort is going to be rekindled by the end of this year [], and Windows 10 S is the likeliest candidate to be the OS of choice for those new computers, in which case the significance of the S label will once again be complicated. Come the holidays, buying a Windows 10 S PC could mean getting either an Intel or an ARM machine, it could mean cheap and cheerful or it could be a premium portable.

Also at the Washington Post [], Engadget [], Laptop Mag [], and Business Insider [].

What do you think the 'S' stands for?

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