Microsoft Confirms "Windows 10 S Mode" – No Longer a Dedicated Version

The operating system that was designed to kill Chrome OS is almost dying. After rumors last month that suggested Microsoft was turning its education-focused Windows 10 S from a dedicated operating system into a \”mode\” in existing versions of Windows 10, the Redmond software maker has now confirmed these rumors.

The new Windows 10 S Mode will be made available next year, according to Microsoft\’s Joe Belfiore. \”Next year 10S will be a \”mode\” of existing versions, not a distinct version,\” Belfiore announced today on Twitter.

Cumulative Update Build 22518.1012 (KB5009380) Is Out for Windows 11 Insiders

We use Win10S as an option for schools or businesses that want the \’low-hassle\’/ guaranteed performance version. Next year 10S will be a \”mode\” of existing versions, not a distinct version. SO … I think it\’s totally fine/good that it\’s not mentioned.

— Joe Belfiore (@joebelfiore) March 7, 2018

The confirmation wouldn\’t surprise anyone since the operating system was never appreciated by Windows 10 users. Windows 10 S was locked down to only run UWP apps from the Microsoft Store – not a favorite place for Windows users. This strategy, while making the operating system more secure, also significantly limited its usage.

Earlier rumors: Windows 10 S Mode will be shipped with Home, Enterprise, and Pro

The new Windows 10 S mode coming next year will work exactly like the dedicated OS version did – limiting usage to apps from the Store. However, it will be shipped with the regular Windows 10 Home, Enterprise and Pro versions instead of a standalone choice.

Introduced as a Chrome OS competitor, Windows 10 S was offered on low-priced machines by Microsoft and its OEM partners for as little as $189. These operating systems are actually popular in the educational market since setting a new account up takes a few minutes and are considered ideal for an environment with constantly changing users. However, while Chrome OS gets access to Google\’s Chrome Web Store and Play Store, Microsoft\’s Windows 10 S was limited to Microsoft Store.

Belfiore hasn\’t confirmed, but rumors had also suggested that the devices shipped with Windows 10 S could disable Windows 10 S and get Home for free, while the Windows 10 Pro will need $49 for full access. The company has yet to confirm these details, but considering the launch of S Mode is still a year away, it has a long time to strategize how it\’s going to market and sell Windows 10 S Mode.

So far, it is clear that S Mode will offer a \”low hassle / guaranteed performance\” version of Windows 10 to schools and businesses. Windows 10 S, as launched last May, will not continue as a separate operating system.

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