Last October, Microsoft had showed the world a rather interesting evolution for the Windows operating system, designed for dual-screen laptops. It is called Windows 10X is supposed to take better advantage of the multiple displays in a computing device, than what the Windows 10 as we know it currently, manages to do. For instance, the upcoming Microsoft Surface Neo. While the basics of Windows remain the same, there are changes to the interface and the resulting experience, with streamlined multi-tasking, a redone start menu and more. Now, Microsoft has changed track and insists that Windows 10X will now land on laptops first.
There are reasons for this change. Microsoft insists that usage of Windows 10 devices has gone up significantly—in fact year on year, there is a 75% increase. Has to be, because millions around the world are working from home during the Coronavirus pandemic. They say 4 trillion minutes have been spent on Windows 10 every month now. It makes sense to reprioritize the positioning of Windows 10X for laptops and single screen devices, at this time.
“With Windows 10X, we designed for flexibility, and that flexibility has enabled us to pivot our focus toward single-screen Windows 10X devices that leverage the power of the cloud to help our customers work, learn and play in new ways. These single-screen devices will be the first expression of Windows 10X that we deliver to our customers, and we will continue to look for the right moment, in conjunction with our OEM partners, to bring dual-screen devices to market,” says Panos Panay, Chief Product Officer, Windows and Devices at Microsoft. The company insists that the vision they had for dual-screen computing devices, such as the Surface Neo, has changed because of the situation around the globe. Rightly so.
That being said, Microsoft doesn’t give an exact timeline on when Windows 10X arrives on laptops, existing and new ones shipped by OEMs.
Back in October, when Windows 10X was officially confirmed by Microsoft, they had insisted that it is not a result of wiping the slate clean and starting afresh. In fact, it is all about building on what they have. “Windows 10X also includes some advancements in the core technology of Windows that optimize it for flexible postures and more mobile use. We needed to deliver battery life that could drive not just one, but two screens. We wanted the operating system to be able to manage the battery effect of our huge catalog of Windows apps, whether they were written in the last month or five years ago. And we wanted to deliver the hardware performance and compatibility our customers expect from Windows 10,” Eran Megiddo, Corporate Vice President, Windows and Education at Microsoft, had said at the time.
Windows 10X has to be the biggest iteration we have ever seen for Windows 10, in all its years of existence. Windows 10X has been made for multi-screen devices. It is stripped down in the sense that it has a simpler interface and does away with some of the fat that Windows 10 otherwise has carried around for a while now. It is more modern and should offer better battery life. Microsoft says that all apps that currently run on your Windows 10 machine will also run on Windows 10X.