Microsoft Is Going To Stop Cramming Windows 10S Down People's Throats

Doug Carpenter
March 8, 2018

Microsoft hasn't said when that Windows 10 update will arrive beyond this year, although programmers will get an early peek at it in the Visual Studio Preview 15.7 release.

The next marquee Windows 10 update won't be just about creators - it will also blow artificial intelligence (AI) wide open on the operating system (OS).

Windows 10 S is eerily similar to Chrome OS.

The new mode was confirmed via Twitter by Windows 10 vice president Joe Belfiore on March 6th. However, reports also suggested that while Microsoft would allow Windows 10 Home users to disable the S Mode for free, it would charge Windows 10 Pro customers $49 if they wanted to disable the mode for access to the full version. It will be doing away with Windows 10S as a separate, distinct version of Windows, and instead will roll out its functionality into an optional mode built into the OS starting in 2019.

The Windows 10 S was meant to be somewhat of a "lite" version of the full Windows 10 system, with the company claiming that the "S" stood for "Simplicity". WinML APIs will be made available on all editions on Windows 10.

The tweet was response to a question about branding confusion, with regard to the education-focused version of the operating system's market share. It was clear that Microsoft was gunning for Google's position as the go-to device for the education market, although it appears that Windows 10 S didn't catch on well enough to warrant its own full operating system.

It's going to be a tricky road ahead for Microsoft in refining its approach towards bringing the change.

Microsoft and OEM partners have already started selling low-end notebooks running Windows 10 S for as little as $189 in an attempt to combat low-priced Chromebooks that have become popular across various industry verticals, but especially in the educational and business sectors. "Windows can perform AI evaluation tasks using the local processing capabilities of the PC, enabling real-time analysis of large local data such as images and video", the company explained.

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