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8-inch and larger Windows 10 tablets only will have the desktop [updated]

Update: Belfiore took to Twitter once again to clarify that existing 7-inch devices will still be able to keep the desktop and take advantage of Continuum (thanks to everyone who tipped us on this).

Even after the recent Windows 10 event and the quantity of new information we received, there are still questions to be asked. Microsoft's Joe Belfiore has clarified in a Twitter conversation which devices will see the desktop with Windows 10.

"@marypcbuk @jackschofield @ExNokian @sbisson @dinabass 8" & up = "desktop" w/ win32 apps. < 8" = phones, phablets, sm tablets. No dsktp."

A little clarity, certainly. So it looks like there will be plenty of tablets able to act as a mini-desktop machine. While we weren't exactly expecting phones to have it, it clears up this particular question concerning the 7-inch tablet form factor.

Sources: @joebelfiore 1, 2

Richard Devine is an Editor at Windows Central. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently you'll find him covering all manner of PC hardware and gaming, and you can follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

293 Comments
  • Bummer....guess my Stream 7 is out.
  • My guess is that despite this size differentiation, 7" tablets that are already on the market will be upgraded to the 'full' version of Windows 10 including the desktop.  I'm pretty sure that Belfiore is referring to eventual new products with Windows 10 when he's talking about those.  I asked that specific question in response to the Twitter thread quoted in this article, but didn't get a response.  Still, until I see otherwards, that's my assumption.
  • I don't understand why they don't make the desktop a universal app that can be added if I wanted it. That way, I could have a desktop if I connected my 930 up to a monitor/TV with an MHL keyboard and mouse... Make it my choice Microsoft!
  • People are already forcing tablet mode on desktop machines. I doubt you won't be able to, if you really want to.
  • Forcing Tablet Mode? It's a simple button...
  • Hopefully they will makr the tablet mode persist a reboot.
  • Tablet Mode is a limp joke.  It only BARELY attempts to imitate how nicely Windows 8 works.  Anyone who thinks Tablet Mode and the full screen Start Menu are anything close to Windows 8 should be smacked.  There's no universe where this is made right. 
  • one word: preview
  • Calm down speedy it's still a preview... There's still a long road ahead for changes to happen.
  • Agree: the taskbar in tablet mode doesn't seem a good idea to me.   My suggestion: integrate the taskbar in the full screen start menu with more modern style icons that are easy to touch.  Everybody will understand that pressing the Windows key gives the screen for both: open new apps and switching between open apps. No taskbar needed when apps are displayed (waste of screen real estate and it ruins the clean design of modern apps). Another suggestion: pressing windows key twice opens up the new 'alt tab'  screen.  Everybody is used to that thanks to the competition.
  • Brilliant idea, WPJanssen.   Excellent.  I'm going to suggest that in feedback app and on forums  
  • Thanks ;-)
  • I'm 100% with you.  Let's not forget the abomination of using Win32 OpenFIleDialog instead of Modern "Pickers".  
  • I'm running in tablet mode myself on my PC. Although I do wish the full screen start menu was more like the start screen. Seems pretty awful at the moment.
  • To be honest and not 100% what you are looking for but, you can easily disable the desktop and just run the modern interface as there are settings that are available to do just that. From there you can just have a shortcut tile to enable it when you wanted it but as far as the desktop being a modern app, not possible.
  • What are these settings you speak of to disable desktop on Windows 10? I'm using it on an HTPC and would love to get rid of it. And not just tablet mode.
  • Well, I guess you mean that you can easily HIDE the desktop and just run the modern interface because it is not possible to actually boot without the legacy components running in the background... Otherwise I wouldn't have suggested this: https://windows.uservoice.com/forums/265757-windows-feature-suggestions/...  
  • There are no desktop apps or exposed APIs for non-Intel machines, so a desktop on your phone would have no actual use.
  • Untrue
  • On Windows for ARM (aka Windows RT) all desktop APIs are exposed.
  • For Windows RT only the APIs of WinRT (Windows Runtime) are available
  • +1 They should really consider that before launch. Or maybe they can start making phones with Intel chips capable of accessing full windows when plugged in to an external display but converts back to the phone UI when unplugged. I hope eventually, their vision extends that far. I think having that kind of power alone could be enough to start gaining significant market share.
  • My Lord! Still with the average thinking, I am so disappointed.
  • I'm pretty sure that's the vision they had with Intel when making the core M processor. If you look at the power consumption heat production vs processing power I think and hope these are in Lamias' soon
  • "lamias"... How dare you!
  • Well for starters you couldn't run anything from your phone. Apps have to be make for the hardware so you can't run any apps anyway which was the tragedy of windows rt on surface and it makes no sense to have a desktop on your phone. It's to cumbersome to use on your phone. Plus, your phone doesn't have the right hardware to use a desktop well. It will be laggy and a terrible experience. Plus it would be a VERY large app for phone. IT MAKES NO SENSE what so ever. This is why apps are specifically made for phones. It's cuz of hardware and software need to work together and to use little memory. A phone also isn't powerful enough to emulate a good desktop experience.
  • to each there own, but why will you need the desktop when you cant install legacy applications on your phone? you will already have office on your phone which you can still project to the tv ot monitor. as for the 7" tablets, honestly, most people use those for games/reading, not so much work unless its urgent and its your only option. no worries, this just confirms to me that the surface mini is coming which i will be purchasing as soon as it hits the market.  
  • Your phone is ARM based. Having a desktop would be as useful as the desktop on surface RT and 2, which is not that useful. You can't run x86 apps on an ARM device. On an intel based 7" tablet on the other hand a desktop might be useful if connected to a monitor. I bet the issue is the limited storage on these mini tablets and they are trying to minimize the OS footprint.
  • Your ARM based Lumia 930 can't have a desktop mode. For the very simple reason ARM based devices cannot run Win32 Apps (legacy software), as they are designed for x86 technology, and running Win32 apps (legacy software) is the whole point of having a desktop environment. As soon as OEMs decide to bring out Intel Atom based smartphones this, 'universal app - desktop' idea starts to make sense. You could use your phone as a mini PC when hooked on a monitor and keyboard. This concept could empower people in developing countries to get a PC when they buy a phone, this fits the Microsoft philosophie perfectly. So maybe they bring feature this in the future. But as long as Windows on smartphones remains a ARM based platform the option for a desktop on your phone is impossible!
  • ARM devices can run anything compiled in .NET 4.0 or over.  There is also a hack available that allows you to install recompiled open source projects.  You can of course also run the standard MS applications such as office, Internet explorer, file explorer, remote desktop etc.  Granted, that's not everything, but still pretty useful.  It would be very handy to be able to hook your phone up to a monitor and keyboard and use even this limited set in the desktop environment.  I wonder will there be a hack out eventually to allow this or are the components simply not installed on the phone.
  • That's recompiling an application, not much of a "hack". That would involve to much work. If you really need the best of both worlds. just get an 8-inch tablet. They're small light & portable. I don't really see why there is so much complaining. It's best to just wait for x86 phones if you feel you need one device.
  • Ubuntu phone does that...
  • ^This. No reason not to allow both modes if the user explicitly enables them.
  • Suggest it. That's what they are asking people to do with this preview.
  • The universal app framework has nowhere near the power needed to create a full desktop in which desktop applications can run. The desktop must be a part of the OS.
  • What you call Universal App framework is Windows Runtime (also know as WinRT) and is impossible to create full desktop application with it, for this kind of application you need of Win32 APIs that can't be used by a Windows Runtime App.
  • Joe just answered. I asked, "@joebelfiore I notice ur words"going forward"Will my 7"Stream KEEP desktop w/upgrade? @marypcbuk @jackschofield @ExNokian @sbisson @dinabass" Joe answered(I'm @JLTechWord)
    @JLTechWord @marypcbuk @jackschofield @ExNokian @sbisson @dinabass Yes, we'll upgrade and keep the experience consistent with what u have Good news!
  • I'm confused.. So what exactly does this mean? What did Belfiore say?
  • He said that anything under 8" will run an ARM version of Windows 10, and that anything 8+ will run a desktop version of Windows 10.
    Of course if you have one of the numerous Atom based 7" tablet with Windows 8/8.1, then that will get the desktop Windows 10. He's talking about the future plans for Windows 10.
  • Not exactly. He specified size, not CPU family. There will probably be Intel based < 8 inch devices. I think this is sensible. I'm not sure my Surface 2 is really a good place for Desktop. When they have a touch based Office, Desktop becomes uneccessary at < 8 inch for sure. Its too small. The new Surface Pro 3 size is about as small as you really wanna go for Desktop. Having almost all device sizes in my possession I really dont wanna do Desktop in those tiny sizes.
  • I use desktop all the time on my Dell. Venue 8 Pro, so lets not go making wild assumptions as to what people will want based on personal preferences. I find it perfectly usable at 8 inches, especially with a pen for input, though that is not even always needed.
  • Agree 100%.....i use it all the time on my DV8Pro...... In fact, I could see a use case for a phone that is docked to a monitor..... They shouldn't limit themselves, open it up MS, let us run desktop on atom based phones
  • I use both modes all the time on my Asus Vivotab M81 (the newer one, without a stylus). Desktop mode is quite usable with on its 8" display. Windows 10 should be all about works best, so why not let the user decide which mode is best for each task at hand?
  • Well you could be happy, you will have Windows 10 as specified many times by Joe!
  • Except the devices are running intel based CPUs that are x86 based which are already running a desktop and are already out could still get the desktop because of the hardware its running. Future devices def won't get a desktop
  • Of course a Desktop is too small for 8-inch talets, but many ppl use these 8-inch tablets connected to an external display, keyboard & mouse --- which in that case it makes perfect sense to have a Desktop.
  • Where did he say that if you already have a 7" tablet then you will get the Windows 10 desktop?
  • I think he's saying x86 window apps will run on 8" and higher, while modern apps only will run on smaller.
  • Not even close. Modern apps will run on any Win 8 or higher machine. And as far as ARM (which is Win RT), it's dead as far as Windows on tablets and laptops/desktops is concerned. MS isn't even providing an upgrade path for people on Win RT devices. For Win RT devices, MS is saying that they will work to provide as many of Win 10's features as they can...but no new Win 10 OS. Really.
  • Windows phone is also ARM, so there is a path for ARM tablets in the future.
  • Only for device with display under 8 inch as said by Belfiore and othet Micrsoft guys many times
  • It makes no sense to base the update for Windows RT on the old 8.1 code baseline. I am very sure, that Windows RT 10 will be exactly this sans few features.
  • I guess I'll just leave this here then :) https://windows.uservoice.com/forums/265757-windows-feature-suggestions/...
  • Modern Apps will run on every devices with Windows 10, PC, notebook, 2-1, tablet, smartphone, XBox, etc...
  • Basically if I'm correct, all CURRENT devices that are 7" and up will be upgradeable to the desktop version of Windows 10, meaning Start Menu and all. But with the NEW devices that are coming out, anything that's 8" or more will get the desktop version of Windows 10, and anything LESS than 8" will get the phone version of Windows 10. So new 7" or smaller devices will look like Windows Phone, and anything 8" or more will look like Windows 10. But current 7"+ devices will be upgradeable to look like Windows 10.
  • Your Stream 7 is probably gaining a considerable amount of storage space.
  • RIght. I just bought a Stream 7 for my son since it has better specs than the 8" tablet we were considering. Had we known that it wouldn't get the full Win10 experience it would have stayed in the store! It's been less than 30 days, maybe we'll take it back now...
  • @hysonmb Joe just answered on Twitter, we keep desktop!
  • Joe Belfiore just tweeted saying existing 7" devices will keep their current setup with desktop.
  • Gotta stop reading into people's assumptions and only believing official reports.
  • You should probably ask your son because he might have a better reading comprehension than you.
  • Time to hack the registery for me.
  • Looks like an attempt by the platform to better define the hardware segments. Not necessarily a bad thing.
  • Agreed, I think this makes sense.
  • As long as we get usb otg and all the windows usb drivers. MS lost opportunity in this field last few years.
  • Is usb otg necessary when we have the cloid/OneDrive?
  • Yes. Is needed.
  • It's just not mainstream enough to warrant the support. Useful, yes. Required? No.
  • Why not for phablet ? At least some extra feature for phablet phone ...
  • What, you want to run desktop Windows 10 on a 6-inch screen. Are you insane?!
  • No, but maybe it would be nice to have the option to plug one's phablet into a dock.
  • And do what? Have really big Windows Phone apps?
  • I understand that you are trying to be witty and clever, but think...think with your brain. If the OP alluded to wanting the desktop and I mentioned a dock, then clearly it would be to run desktop applications. If you can have 7" tablets with desktop functionality, it's not a stretch to say that you can have a phablet with the same. The practicality will be questionable, but it's still possible.
  • Why not just get a desktop?
  • Since that's what universal apps are on a desktop, yes.
  • There has been plenty of attempts with this on Android but I've never actually seen anyone use it. Its properly not convenient in the end.
  • Yes, not with Android..... But an Atom based windows phone with a docking station would be the best thing ever...... Universal apps, phone is for phone.... Docked desktop. I'd never need a laptop or tablet....it worked be the phone that replaced my desktop.
  • It's hardware restrictions. That can come in a future date but we dont have the hardware to do that. We can do it with tablets now but not small phones yet.
  • Then you can use the RDP Client and remote to your full desktop computer.  
  • Well we used to have windows mobile 6.0 that had full windows features including the start menu and it was done with 3" screens so yea it would be nice to have the option.
  • Have you used a 7-8 inch tablet with the desktop? It's nice to have but I promise you is not the most useable thing in the world and as far as docking, btt you invest in options like that you could have just invested in a small tablet\laptop or whatever that you keep docked to mirror your phone with. I know it's not the same solution you're looking for but there are tons of ways to accomplish what you are looking for without too much clutter or many steps.
  • Yes, just use an HDMI cable and plug it into a big screen, this size limitation is stupid.
  • No, Windows Mobile is not a "full windows features" at all. It has a start menu, yes, but it is all what it has from "full windows".
  • Remote from my 1520 into my win10 device is really good
  • Small devices with the ability to connect or stream to a monitor can run desktop mode just fine.
  • And why not, when a phone could interface with a full size display?
  • Sure it's not the greatest experience, but playing Half Life 2 and Portal on my return Xmas flight on my HP stream 7 off microsd card with Xone controller connected via OTG cable was AMAZING.  Couldn't believe how well it runs!  And using surface arc mouse (bluetooth) with HP7 (and desktop) is great.  I also have a mini bluetooth keyboard, but that keeps dropping connection.  Playing original Max Payne was fun while the keyboard lasted.  I wanted to really push it and see if it could run some advanced DCC programs, but sadly it's a 64bit atom running 32bit windows.   I'd prefer a 6" version that would fit easier in the pocket.  With full desktop! 
  • That would suck.
  • A extra could be a double screen option for phablets
  • Current and near future gen phone and phablet hardware is running on ARM processors.  Porting the desktop environment, all of it's subsystems, and all of the first and third party desktop software to ARM is not really feasible.  Therefore, even if they gave you a desktop for your ARM device, it wouldn't be able to run much of anything.  Also, ARM based phone hardware is not yet powerful enough to provide a "workstation" experience.  So there is really no point in having a desktop on these devices to allow someone to plug them into an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse.  Maybe in a few more years when x86 is scaled down and efficient in devices that currently use ARM, but until then, your phone is not going to function as a desktop.
  • Desktop environment including all subsystems is already already available for ARM. It is called Windows RT. Microsoft just needs to remove the certificate lock-down to enable third parties to target ARM desktop.
  • That is the best.
  • Ok for me
  • If Windows phones picked up a desktop everyone would say that Microsoft was stuck in the 90s.
  • What about Surface Pro 3/4? They can't be desktop only??
  • Just disable tablet mode.
  • The title of the article is confusing; it would better read 'Only tablets 8" and above get desktop in Windows 10.'
  • Oooh, it says "only will have" I read it as "will only have." I was sooo confused.
  • Title is confusing, it should be something like - The desktop will only be available on 8-inch or larger Windows 10 tablets.
  • So, no tablet mode on 12" tablets? That can't be right.
  • This whole mess is confusing but if I am correct I believe that there will be both options on the larger devices but only the tablet mode available for the smaller devices.
  • No. If your tablet is 12", you will have desktop AND tablet modes available to you. If you tablet is 7", you will only have tablet mode
  • The desktop and tablet mode will still be available on 8" or more devices, meaning 10", 12", 32" etc. Anything less than 8" will just either stick you in tablet mode only, or will run the Windows Phone version of Windows 10. I don't see how that's confusing. It just depends on how it's worded I suppose.
  • Awesome thing
  • I'd be interested to see how they determine the physical screen size. If such a restriction is built in you can be sure somebody will make a tool to stop enforcing it.
  • The info is probably set by the manufacturer when it's made.  
  • Firmware I'm sure.  This probably applies to OEMs and licensing more than anything.  If you have a x86 tablet with a 7" screen I don't see how MS could stop an individual from installing the full desktop version of Windows on it manually.
  • Possibly firmware restrictions?
  • Uhm so we are still not there yet where we can dock a phone and let it function as a full PC? Bummer.
  • That's not necessarily ruled out. If it is detecting the actual current screen size there's nothing to say it couldn't present a desktop when a larger screen is available. But definitely not on its primary screen.
  • How will it present something that's not even there?
  • There's nothing saying it won't be there, just that won't be presented on small screens. Time will tell as to the specifics.
  • ARM processors are the biggest limitation for phones.  When x86 gets scaled down to phone size devices then running a desktop and desktop software from a docked phone will start to make sense.  Until then, a desktop with little or no software wouldn't be very useful.
  • The easiest solution is RDP + Bluetooth peripherals connected to phone + Miracast or usb streaming via MHL. That gets around the lack of software as the host computer is doing the bulk of heavy lifting and you could use even photoshop, lightroom etc etc. Plus sensitive documents aren't stored on the phone so it is a win-win situation (providing the user doesn't use rdp over a open Wi Fi connection :p).
  • Garbage
  • Because you can't use desktop apps on a small screen that has a processor incapable of running such apps?
  • A Stream 7 is perfectly capable of running such apps and issues with screen size are dependant upon the user. There's also the option, used by many, to output the video from that small screen to a large monitor. My son's Stream 7 Slate with Windows 8.1 works perfectly well with desktop apps and if desired we could send the video to an extermal monitor. Taking options that already exist away sucks for people who use them.
  • Was it an ARM device?
  • That makes sense. Desktop gets a little weird and less useful in smaller devices.
  • Agreed
  • Agree 100%
  • What about current 7" tablets that have Windows 8.1?
  • You can be sure this is only for new hardware that will be coming after the release of Windows 10. One would expect anything current running full Windows 8.1 will be able to upgrade to full Windows 10.
  • I wouldn't be sure of anything with the team running Windows now. I have never heard anyone from the Windows team promise what you just claimed.
  • Now that I have my Surface, I was actually hoping for my Venue Pro 8 to get the update for phones and small tablets. Hope it at least gets the flow keyboard.
  • The Venue 8 Pro is safe, you'll get the desktop. Anything smaller is what's being excluded.
  • You missed his point. He actually wants the phone/small tablet version without the desktop on his DV8.
  • That I did...
  • Why you want a less-features version? If you don't need the desktop, you can use it only in Tablet Mode, and take advantage of an interface that fits best to larger screens, snap view, multi-account
  • But what about multi-monitor support for tablets smaller than 8"?
  • BUT! Will they show desktop once connected to an external display?
    Imagine miracasting your phone and using it as a desktop when you're home. Sauceum.
  • Here's hoping!
  • Why would you want that?
  • That way you could use your phone like you'd use a laptop, but no need to bring an extra computer with you. Anywhere where there is a monitor available you could work on Word documents (not using the small phone version but the full tablet version), or use any software, on the big screen, right from you phone. Since the same version of Windows 10 will be installed on every device I don't see why they couldn't make this possible. It would be a great selling point to tell people that their phone is actually a real full computer.
  • With touch office, there is no need for a desktop in your scenario. With regular desktop programs, they wont run on your phones CPU anyways.
  • The desktop isn't only for regular desktop programs. It's just to make it easier to use with a mouse and keyboard with the taskbar, start menu, and the ability to have floating windows that we can rearrange the way we want. We could also use the file explorer, like we can on the current Windows RT.
  • True. Even if full windows is far away from running on phones, accomplishing the desktop as a universal app on phones would be a huge selling point. Exciting. windows has so many possibilities right now and if they play their cards right they could nail their vision of a unified windows. That would be very hard to compete with and could bring OEM's to choose windows as their OS of choice.
  • I believe Microsoft said Windows 10 for phones code would be 100% compliant. You will indeed have full Windows on phone minus desktop. E.g.: Outlook with Word engine, Office functions... Mind blowing! And, they might have a unified Windows when there will be only one Store. Microsoft is moving away from desktop slowly, but takes time. People don't get it. One ecosystem should be already there with W10 and the write once, run everywhere philosophy too. Hence universal apps' reality. They wouldn't be viable without Msoft's tools for devs. That's how I see the whole pic.
  • But the desktop is not an app...
  • It's more about presenting a keyboard-and-mouse friendly workstation when connected to a larger display. Why wouldn't you want that? Furthermore, once x64 processors are efficient enough to be in phones (or we have a revolution in battery technology) you could actually have your full computer in your pocket. Why wouldn't you want that?
  • It still won't make the desktop make sense on such a tiny device.
  • That's why our whole argument is about how the desktop should be available as an option when we project our phone to an external monitor.
  • Clearly they should add bloat to the OS for something a small subset of people will do. Or you could always do what everyone else does and get a real computer.
  • That last statement is exactly what people said when the Surface range was new. Now look at it.
  • There was a reason for the desktop on RT.
  • I clearly said 'larger display' ... :\
  • Mia Culpa So, in this dream scenario... Intel has gotten their chips down to use such little power that they're in phones and Microsoft has bloated up their OS for a niche use case?
  • Technology is all about the dream. Without it we'd have none of the devices or services we have today.
  • Yeah, that would be awesome. I've been hoping for this feature for a long time!!
  • Because people don't like to be realistic and will always want more than you give them.
  • @eddiDOTexe, the best you really can hope for is Bluetooth connectivity + rdp + miracast / mhl. Honestly if they could do enable that it would be best of both worlds as the phone is not running any unnecessary bloat and you get the option to use some serious applications on the go without the need to have an x86 soc. The latter however would be heavily dependent on your internet connection.
  • So ... is it possible that 7 inch Windows tablets will run on ARM? If there is no desktop then why go Intel? Small tablet is basically the same as the phone SKU, no?
  • I wish the cut off point for no desktops included 8" tabs too - a 4:3 Aspect Ratio 8" tab with a pure tablet interface running Universal apps and specific entertainment and productivity tablet/ touch-centric apps would have been very cool. If priced lower than Apple and some of the Droid tabs, they would have been a damn good proposition!!!
  • Yeah, this. I'd prefer to have that pure tablet only interface (similar to what I had with Win 8.1) in my Dell Venue 8 Pro.
  • Why? It's not like there won't be modern apps. Users can just choose not to use the desktop.
  • Why have it there in the first place then?
  • As an option for those who DO want to use it.
  • Especially when connecting to external displays.
  • You reall love external displays, don't you?
  • No need to be offensive, searching down my comments on various threads to make snide remarks.
  • I'm not searching them down, I'm going down the comment section and seeing what I feel I should respond to.
  • And use it only in tablet mode and you will have what you want
  • The question is: 2-1 laptops in tablet mode will be able to use desktop icons? With 9926 it's not possible. I thought that was a bug, but after this article ...
  • I thought that that headline said "8 inch and larger Windows 10 tablets will only have the desktop" Almost had a heart attack
  • Seems kind of restrictive IMO, if people are able to use the desktop on 7" devices then let them use it.  Sure it's not 'ideal' but it's their choice isn't it? I use immersive IE because it works better on my 8" than the desktop version, I have a choice and I use the one I prefer.  At the same time if I want to sign into steam and chat to friends I use the desktop.  Or if I want to play games.  Or listen to music on my player of choice.  Or watch local videos. Actually this worries me slightly.  If the manufacturer of my tablet hasn't set the size then what do I get when I upgrade? I'd rather stay on 8.1 with a desktop than use 10 with no desktop.  
  • Desktop apps I assume will still be available to download and install much like the tablets use the desktop interface now. The difference is they will have to be pinned to your start screen, your task bar or accessed via the apps list in the start screen. That's my assumption
  • If build 9926 is to be taken as reference, the difference you will see when upgrading to Windows 10 is how the multitasking works. No restriction to install win32 apps
  • I'd rephrase the title to "Only 8-inch and larger windows 10 tablets will have the desktop". The way it's currently phrased may be read as 8 inch and up tablets on W10 will only have desktop mode (no tablet mode)
  • Ok makes sense, this is a pointless story
  • Yeah, they should rephrase it. I was kind of scared when I read the title!
  • I was thinking the same thing after I read that. :)
  • Ok makes sense, this is a pointless story.
  • Someone will find a way to unlock desktop on every device unless then yank it out completely.
  • No, I guess you don't know what are you talking about. Desktop is not a hidden "app".
  • I guess this now Windows 10 central, it great to know about the the new , but we are still in 8.1 , everyone has not downloaded the tech preview.
  • Well... If there's nothing to say about 8.1...
  • Please share your 8.1 news, we want to hear about that just as much.
  • Haha
  • What's more to say, news wise, about 8.1? It'd be like complaining how they don't talk much about the 360.
  • Leave the tablets just for a second...i still didnt get meaning of this "1" year for installation of Windows 10 on PC....after 1 year .... What??? I have to pay for it or?
  • That means that everyone who downloaded windows 10 in that first year will get it for free and have it for the life of their device. Those who adopt it later than a year after its release will have to buy it.
  • So i will have to chill out :D i will keep it :P
  • They have stated that currently, they have no plan on changing their subscription and pricing options for how they sell windows licenses. It will be the same as it's always been minus giving it away for free for a year
  • Yes. What's so confusing? Free for 1 year. After 1 year, it is no longer free.
  • Dude, it IS confusing... I have now W10 at my PC... What will happend after this 1 year?
    1) i have to pay for it so i can keep use it?...
    2)i will have it for free because i did install it in that period of free install
    3)or i have to downgrade my windows because will be no more free?
    it is rly confusing...
  • Stop and think. Seriously stop, put down the keyboard and think. If you have windows you have a year to upgrade for free. When that year runs out, if you have not bought it...you will have to buy it. If you upgraded, breath, relax, put your think cap on, and enjoy windows till you buy another PC.
  • Basically, Windows will cost whatever amount of dollars that it usually does, but there's a one year offer to get it for free if you own a Windows 7 or 8.1 machine.
  • So where does that leave me and my touch laptop. I want the start screen.
  • You will have a maximized Start Menu.
  • No, a full screen start menu. Tablet mode is full screen start menu (can't be maximized/restored), only on desktop mode you can maximize and restore the start menu.
  • And of course this is the final nail in the RT's coffin!
  • Yay!
  • We've always known Windows 10 (ARM) was going to replace both Windows Phone and RT. And with x86 being equal to ARM performance-wise it makes no sense to design Win10 ARM for devices able to run full Windows. So that leaves
  • WTF, does it mean I will lose my Desktop when updating my HP Stream 7 to Windows 10?
  • Nah, your device won't run Windows 10 (ARM/phone) OS. Which is what they're talking about here. It does mean it's possible Microsoft hasn't optimized Windows 10 (x86) OS for devices of such size.
  • Likely.
  • Was anyone expecting anything else? The below 8" devices are powered by Windows 10 (phone). No matter what Microsoft days this is a different OS. Even though from an end-user perspective it will (hopefully) feel very similar to the real Windows 10. But its nice to hear MS making it clear they wont approve Windows 10 Pro for devices smaller than 8". I imagine the OS also isn't optimized for it.
  • It's a bit mind boggling that you would take away all the desktop functionality and legacy programs from anyone performing a Windows "upgrade." It's a totally unnecessary change as well. If someone with a 7" tablet doesn't want the desktop they can unpin the desktop tile on a Windows 8 machine today. Problem solved in two seconds without punishing every single person who bought the 7" tablet.
  • I didn't even know that exists 7" tablet running full Win8/8.1. It's true?
  • HP Stream 7 is a great 7" tablet running 8.1
  • Yes. We have several of them at work. Running legacy training software. On the desktop.
  • Article updated.
  • Come on, Joe. I just want to use my phone for everything... Dock my phone at work and run 3 monitors!!! Make it so!!
  • For now phones run a different OS from other devices. Technology just isn't there yet. Particularly on the low-end where Microsoft needs to shine to grow. But who knows, in a few years, we might see x86 phones. Then MS only needs to make the Windows 10 (x86) interface scale to smaller devices and look like Windows 10 (ARM). App-wise the platforms are already merged. Then you can dock your phone and all that goodness. Technology needs to catch up but Windows is ready.
  • I guess 3 laggy monitors is better than 1. :cough:
  • Lol.
  • Hey Richard any news on if we can use SD cards for storage for windows 10 apps unlike 8.1 that limits it to the devices hardrive only???
  • I'd like to know this as well.
  • There's a registry edit for that.
  • He means the storage sense, like on Windows Phone 8.1
  • Have looked but it doesn't work for 8.1 on tablets unless there's a new fix or it anyone??
  • Probably, you can choose where to install apps, documents, music, pictures and videos under Settings >> Storage Sense. May be they would add SD Card option there, once there's only one option right now (This PC) what doesn't make sense.
  • Was talking about tablets on 8.1, there no way to change it full stop.
  • Horrible title for the article!
  • It's sad, I was hoping smaller devices could still get the desktop since some of them we can plug in or project to external monitors and use with a mouse and keyboard. Actually, I was even hoping to be able to use my phone as a computer. Just imagine how awesome it would be to be able to project your phone to an external monitor and use it with a bluetooth mouse and keyboard. Sure it wouldn't be as powerful as real computers, but it'd still be good enough to use Office and surf the Internet.
  • as I had expected.
  • Could this mean they might be leaving an option for a 7" Windows Phone? It might be too big for most, but a Windows Phone of that size would look rather nice, in my opinion. A while back, I used a Huawei Honor X1, and liked it, although its size did eventually prove to be impractical.
  • A 7" phone?! Are you serious?!! That would be utterly ridiculous. By all means add 3G functionality to a 7" tablet...but lets not legitimise people walking around with even bigger phones!
  • Ha ha ha Well, to each his own. But, yeah, I agree a seven inch phone is a bit much. I just wonder why MS didn't mention the 7 inch tablet sector???
  • Yes, it would be far too much lol! If this is any indication... https://boygeniusreport.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/note-8-phone-call.jp...
  • Ha ha ha ha :)
  • Hows a 7" Windows Phone any different than a 7" Android tablet? They're both running their same exact OSes
    , and both look the same no matter what size screen its running on. A 5" Windows Phone will look almost identical to a 7" Windows Phone powered tablet. The same exact thing applies to Android. The only difference is that the 7" devices dont have the capability to call or text anybody on a mobile provider network, unless you get that LTE data option from them if its available from your provider. I think Windows Phone 10 would look great on a 7" device. Its up to the user whether or not he/she wants to actually use it like a tablet and have a little common sense, or look like a jackass and hold it up to their ear like a phone/take selfies with it.
  • I'm just wondering if there is like a limitation for why desktops can't happen with 7 inches and below devices?
  • I bet its an artificial limitation. Mainly because the desktop and its UI elements don't look good at that size. Windows scales to both resolution and screen size. I guess that Windows (x86) interface isn't designed to go below 8" screens. I do suspect they'll slowly work their way down to make full Windows work on smaller devices. I suspect for now its just easier to set a limit for where Windows 10 x86 ends and ARM (phone) starts. That way they can get it out of the door before pigs fly.
  • well, i thought for a moment that 8" tablet will only have desktop mode. give me a fright.
  • Yet again screwing over Windows tablet users. If I had purchased a 7" Windows tablet this holiday I would be furious. It is such a nonsensical decision as well since there is very low probability of there ever being a 7" phone. What difference would it make if they said the cut off line was at 7" instead of 8"? How can they get away with taking away all the desktop functionality and programs and claim this as an "upgrade" for those users.    Not that any of this matters since Windows 10 looks like absoulte garbage for Windows tablet users. Without the ability to boot to start screen, have full screen apps without a taskbar, and no charms options or an accessible swipe up app menu -- the experience of Windows on tablets is going to be garbage for everyone involved. In fact the experience of Windows 10 on 8" tablets and above is going to be so terrible maybe it is the 7" tablets who will be the lucky ones. Either way Windows on tablets is becoming a bad joke with the changes they're making in Windows 10.
  • They are not taking away Win32 programs on Intel based tablets. The only difference will be how multitasking works ( no windowed apps on a desktop)
  • Yeap.
  • http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m04gx2bT2j1qd9lrdo1_500.gif
  • So where does that leave something like the HP Stream 7?  Will MS remove the ability to install desktop programs?
  • Can you please put "only" first in the title? At first I thought it said 8 and 10 inch tablets will only get the desktop.
  • Makes sense. Saved space in the drive and ram.
  • Another mistake, they should have desktop on all sizes, add x86 CPU to a few Lumias with Miracast and bt mouse-kb and you got a new era, w10 to rule them all
  • Wow the title to this article is very confusing. Just saying.
  • great..i want to get rid of desktop from my 7inch x86 tablet. It eats memory and processor time and is pretty much unusable. But I hope it can still run x86 applications.
  • So in the UK, we have a range of Linx tablets that are in 7", 8" and 10" form factors. The 7 and 8" versions have the exact same specification, and screen resolution. The only difference is the screen size. So am I right in thinking that the 7 will no longer get access to the desktop, whereas the 8 will?! That's going to annoy plenty of customers I reckon...
  • They run full Win8.1? Or RT?
  • They run full W8.1. Reading between the lines I think that all pre-existing x86 devices that currently have access to the desktop (i.e. All of them) will still have access to the desktop post-W10 upgrade. The change will come on new devices sold with W10. However, even if they do find a way to enforce it on upgraded devices, they will still be able to run all the same 'desktop' software, you just won't access it through a windowed 'desktop' environment, i.e. Full-screen only.
  • RT is effectively dead.
  • Makes sense because surface pro 4 is rumored to come in a 8 and 12" screen. They would not there laptop replacement to be tablet only
  • Is it just me or is that the RT story all over again. I figured that, atleast they would wanna get Miracast out there with those small tablets. Get those desktop out on tv's, what's he hold up! Desktops on all sizes is the only thing that makes sense. If it's a problem, then let them be enabled when plugged into HDMI or when n Miracast.     I would call that technology!
  • Exactly, just makes it incapable of running full windows unless its connected to an external display. That should be the end goal but if/when that's possible it could really affect their tablet, laptop desktop sales which wouldn't really matter I guess since it's still going into the same pocket.
  • Hadn't thought of it like that, people could start to use a docked phone instead of buying/subscribing to Office, seeing as it's free on phones. Not that that is necessarily a bad thing. :)
  • There goes my dream of docking a Windows phone to a wireless KVM for productivity work.
    Some other mobile OS is going to have to step up and provide that functionality now :(
  • Not necessarily, office will run in tablet mode now, and x86 programs (the point of desktop) were never a possibility on any platform since pretty much all the phones are ARM.
  • The title for this article needs to be updated. I'm not a grammar Nazi but the order of words really does matter. Okay, I am a grammar Nazi. The headline still needs to be updated.
  • Article title is very bad and hard to understand.
  • So who had installed tech preview on a seven inch? What happens?
  • Rats. I wanted desktop on my 4inch phone. Jk.
  • But... I wanted desktop on my 1520! [sarcasm]
  • I think it's better to be 10 inch or above 8 inch seems to little for desktop.
  • I almost wonder if there will be a way to hack the desktop/unlock it on those small devices. I guess there would be no point because our phones sadly do not have Intel processors.
  • Makes sense.
  • I hope there's a hack to enable the desktop on smaller devices.
  • So, the Surface devices will not have the touch first OS? Guess I'm not upgrading my Surface Pro then. I use it as a tablet 90% of the time.
  • It will have tablet mode. He was saying that under 8" means no desktop.
  • Funny I thought this was already clearly explained at the event. What was just explain is exactly how I understood it from the start. 7" and lower gets the mobile version. Mobile Version = no desktop.
  • What about Surface RT
  • We're talking about size, so what's your RT size?
  • Surface RT = 10 inch = desktop
  • Nope, RT devices likely won't get 10.
  • For a minute there I read that title as something else entirely. I thought that those tablets will only have a desktop and nothing else.
  • I don't get this, it seems odd. I would expect the line to be ARM/x86. Why couldn't they give an Atom-packing tablet with an 7-inch display the Windows desktop?
  • Sm tablet = Surface Mini Tablet
  • I don't see Spartan or Outlook on my Windows 10 preview, where the hell are they?!
  • Not sure about outlook but they explained that Spartan wasn't going to be ready for this build but on a future build they will add it.
  • Windows 10 is looking to be a real bummer, gone is the vision they had a year ago. Windows phone is done in another year too, I'll bet anyone..
  • My Acer W8 will have desktop! Yeah!!!
  • I don't understand this. It seems that many devices less than 8" could still be docked, which would warrant the desktop. Size is irrelevant when you can dock.
  • Honestly, on anything smaller than 10inches, the desktop should be hidden unless docked and/or connected to an external monitor. (Acessible via the settings for those who actually want to use it on a tiny display, but hiding it otherwise will benefit most consumers and avoid confusion)
  • First off, all you people asking the same question about the 7", read some comments first before asking.
    As for me, I don't see a need for desktop mode in smaller screens. The phone, even if 6-7 inch, is just fine with a touch interface only. While I think the docking option or Miracast option would be cool to allow a desktop mode, the apps are not meant for it. In the same token, desktop mode does not mean x32 apps, it means windowed environment. It's the compromise for all those that bitch about win 8 and can't adapt to change.
    I will be happy if my rt gets any version of win 10. It is personal preference about desktop mode, but i would not be sad or offended if my surface rt only got a tablet mode, I only use desktop mode for updates. with snap, I can still multitask. Again, that's my personal use/preference
  • Proof MSFT just doesn't "get" tablets. I have never used desktop on my Nokia 2520 and most likely never will, other than for Office. Desktop is in no way, shape, or form optimized for touch. It's a pretty crappy experience.
  • im still hoping for miracast or hdmi desktop for phones.
  • As I said take everything he says with a pinch of salt. He changes things more than the weather..
  • When a girl ask how big it is I will just say it gets desk top mode ;)
  • I cant see the phone getting desktop maybe some features but not actually the full thing
  • will these
  • What's with Microsoft and limitations? Why not just let OEMs choose?
  • With all due respect, continuum will have to get far, far better before it even comes close to being as good as 8.1 on tablets. Right now Windows 10 sucks on tablet compared to Windows 8.1. They've sacrificed tablets to appease desktop and laptop users, which they already had. Windows is DOA on tablets unless it improves by leaps and bounds between now and launch. Honestly, give me Windows 10 for phones on a tablet to go with my SP3.
  • What is continuum?
  • I really like Belfiore.. He seems like a kind guy! And he presents well, :D.
    So. We can have desktop on our phones?
  • It's understandable why the desktop shouldn't be available on small devices. Its absolutely worthless to work with. 7" screens should stick with the Windows Phone version of Windows 10, whereas an 8" can still have the desktop. An 8" device is still portable enough to where it will mainly be used as a tablet, but if you wish to use the desktop with a BT keyboard/mouse and stream it to a larger screen you can. Any device smaller than that there is really no point to have a desktop on it. If you were to try and stream to a larger screen the resolution could potentially be messed up and your screen will look stretched as hell.
  • Its hard to shoot a moving target! I am still hoping for a tv with Windows?
  • Maybe they'll give that functionality to the consumer version of the Surface Hub once it comes out. There's always room for possibilities. :)
  • Idc
    But I guess it's right•
  • So only 8" and above will have the desktop, but 7" will also have the desktop. Glad we cleared that up...
  • This is the same genius decision making that took place holders out of OneDrive, now at it again removing features/options and calling it an improvement. 
  • I have a Stream 7 and I use the desktop often. It is small, but it works fine, especially with a cheap stylus. I use it for Excel, which doesn't have many features on my phone, and it's something I use a lot. A major problem with no desktop would be the Kindle app. The app can't show a lot of books, like textbooks, which have to be read in the desktop application, so no desktop would make my tablet useless for my classes. I also use desktop IE for Pandora so it doesn't stop playing when I switch apps. Unless there are major additions app-wise, no desktop would be a big problem for me.
  • And you still have the desktop!
  • I won't say that phone version of w10 is even close to tablet version; but i too agree that desktop version shouldn't be there on less than 7" screens. Btw, At one hand people demand to keep wp as simple as was in wp7, and on the other hand they're demanding desktops on every device? Think about it. My point of view: I have nexus 7 2013. Personally, 7" is my ideal screen size (for a handy tab). But nobody seems to be bothering about it anymore. OF COURSE phone version of w10 will be too big for it. But looking at the w10 desktops, i don't think they can be fitted into this screen.. And if they do, everything will be toooo tiny to use. It'd be a bad experience. Increase 1" (including the boundaries of my tab) and it CAN feel OK.. Or at least usable. Decrease 1" and we have nexus 6 (i mean phablets). Android is comfortable at this screen size. But now tabs are 8"+ mostly. I think.. For 7" tabs, Microsoft should allow ONLY tablet version of w10. It's a special case. So for screen sizes: 8"+ = desktop + tablet version (hybrid) 7" = tablet version 7"- = phone version
  • Of course desktop isn't going to look good on the small screens, but what if it was docked to a monitor? Along with a mouse and keyboard?
  • I was LESS confused when i was understanding the theory of relativity...   For me, there are 3 versions: 1. Desktop (mouse, keyboard, wallpaper, win7 like experience) 2. Tablet (always full screen start menu, full screen apps) 3. Phones (same old phone version)   Now, i know 8" devices will get DESKTOP version (can convert to TABLET version during use) Phones will get PHONES version.   What about NEW 7" tabs/devices? (not DESKTOP of course) So, TABLET or PHONES?   Please clarify me.
  • I just hope that larger tablets, like my Surface Pro 3, will have a better tablet experience than the direction the technical preview makes it look like things are going. I know that it is a technical preview. But if the preview shows the general direction that things are going for larger tablets in the Tablet Mode it worries me some because I don't see anything that doesn't look like a compromise. In Tablet Mode on my Surface I would rather lose the desktop than lose the tablet interface like it appears happens right now. Right now tablet mode equals a blown up start menu that is not nearly as nice as the start screen, a persistent task bar, and maximized apps that you can optionally run in full screen if you so choose. I might stay on Windows 8.1 with my Surface if the Tablet Mode does not improve dramatically, which hopefully it will since this is a technical preview. The Desktop looks awesome on 10, but I only want a Desktop on my Surface when it is docked or connected to the type cover.