MICROSOFT IS BRINGING its new operating system variant, Windows 10X, to more devices than first thought.
Windows 10X is designed with dual-screen and foldable devices in mind, offering a version of Windows tailored for multiple touchscreen devices. Now it seems that it could be an option for touchscreen laptops too.
The last time Microsoft tried to fork Windows, it was with the original Surface devices which ran Windows RT, a stripped-down version which could only access newer UWP apps.
Windows 10 S Mode was originally meant to be a standalone fork but ended up being an optional stripped-down UI for Windows 10.
It certainly sounds like Windows 10X will be more of the latter. We already know it runs WIN32 programs, which means that a proper Windows kernel is in there somewhere. It also means that Microsoft will be able to flog you an Office 365 subscription with confidence. Whoopty-doo.
That's a lot easier than it used to be. Windows is migrating to a more modular structure called Core OS, which will mean it's a lot easier to fork in different directions whilst maintaining compatibility - IoT, Hololens, Xbox and yes, foldables.
But, if Kevin turns out to be still alive (we're working on that one) he'll be disappointed. The Surface Neo, the company's long-awaited clamshell phone, will run Android.
Whilst we don't know loads about Windows 10X just yet, the documents obtained by WalkingCat, which have since been removed from the website, shows a new colourful, touch-first file explorer, suggesting that it's going to feel a bit different to a standard Windows installation.
It also suggests that we'll see a more Face ID or Face Unlock-alike version of Windows Hello, which won't require you to do much more than look at your device.
The taskbar and start menu are intact to give some continuation but expect the design language to look very different, with a focus on fingers. µ
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