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Microsoft's Windows 10 Mobile 'beta test' is almost over, and ARM-based ultramobile PCs cometh

With just over 20 percent of the less than one percent market share Window phone has of the smartphone space, Windows 10 Mobile's uninspiring presence likely represents Microsoft's strategic exit from smartphones in preparation for its introduction of a new mobile device category.

Windows Phone 8.1, for which Microsoft recently ended support, comprises the bulk of Microsoft's meager smartphone share. That leaves Windows 10 Mobile as the only supported representative of Microsoft's Windows-on-mobile vision, presumably until the debut of some form of ultramobile PC with telephony, possibly powered by CShell.

The most ardent Windows 10 Mobile fans left have enrolled in Microsoft's Insider's Program to gain early access to new OS builds. For many who find Microsoft's silence regarding Windows 10 Mobile's future and its broader mobile vision troubling, the Insider Program serves as a legitimate, and relatively consistent means to gain the slightest hints of Microsoft's direction in mobile.

With Microsoft's withdrawal of Lumia smartphones from the market, no marketing of Windows 10 Mobile in support of OEM partners HP and Alcatel, Microsoft's doing the bare minimum to maintain Windows 10 Mobile before possibly pulling the plug.

Microsoft, are you using us?

So why would Microsoft keep Windows 10 Mobile alive by releasing new OS builds? And why have an official contact person and spokeswoman for the platform's progress, in the person of Insider Chief Dona Sarkar?

Well, access to a "person at Microsoft in-the-know" excites users and inspires feelings of involvement in the future success of the platform. Simply put, it keeps users engaged with the platform, and their usage and feedback are beneficial to the development process. This is what Microsoft wants.

It's common practice for companies to engage in internal testing (dogfooding) or limited beta testing with a small group of users to glean information and to improve products before release. Rarely, if ever, does beta testing occur for over a year with millions of testers for a product that technically has a "pseudo market presence."

Windows 10 Mobile has become a mere beta test, and fans are the testers.

That's essentially what's happening with Windows phone fans using Windows 10 Mobile who are part of Microsoft's Insider's Program. With no real market presence, Windows 10 Mobile has virtually devolved into a mere beta test for Windows 10 on ARM, cellular and other features for future implementation in Windows 10 on ARM devices, and fans are the beta testers.

Transition from smartphones to cellular PCs to ultramobile PCs

Cellular PCs running full Windows on ARM, which should begin hitting the mass market this fall, may be the first step toward telephony-enabled ultramobile PCs.

Microsoft will use the concept of always-connected cellular PCs, where users will purchase data from the Windows Store, to help create mindshare for the new type of always-connected telephony-enabled ultramobile PCs that may follow.

Windows Chief Terry Myerson stated Microsoft's continued investments in mobile are because of the effects of ARM and cellular connectivity on the future technical landscape:

There are really two things that are unique about Windows Mobile. [Cellular] connectivity, and ... ARM processors ... both ... have a role in the technical landscape of the future.

What Microsoft is currently gleaning about those technologies as it keeps Windows 10 Mobile "breathing," and fans involved with the platform are likely the final stages of research and development as Microsoft prepares a move to Windows 10 for ARM-based, telephony-enabled ultramobile PCs. This PC-oriented strategy is consistent with Corporate VP of the Operating Systems Group Joe Belfiore's recent statement that Windows on ARM is for PCs.

Thank you for your service

Soon Microsoft may no longer need the Windows phone fans that have been dogfooding platform features that are likely bound for a future category of Microsoft-inspired ultra mobile PCs with telephony.

If Windows 10 Mobile has devolved into a testing platform and Windows phone fans are the "beta testers," and we are indeed on the precipice of a shift to Windows on ARM on ultramobile PCs with telephony, that beta test may soon be over.

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Jason L Ward is a columnist at Windows Central. He provides unique big picture analysis of the complex world of Microsoft. Jason takes the small clues and gives you an insightful big picture perspective through storytelling that you won't find *anywhere* else. Seriously, this dude thinks outside the box. Follow him on Twitter at @JLTechWord. He's doing the "write" thing!

  • Thanks for reading folks!!! So what are your thoughts. LET'S TALK!!!
  • We all know Windows 10 Mobile, has been troubled from the start. Windows 10 Mobile was intended to be a successful iteration of Windows 10 on smartphones and small tablets. That didn't happen. In its current state, in use with several million enthusiasts, it is not a mainstream OS, and isn't marketed to the masses. Ironically, it is, however, the official representation of Microsoft's mobile platform and powers Windows phones like the HP Elite x3 and Alcatel Idol Pro, currently in the market. Upon its initial release, it was infamously plagued with problems that irked consumers of the Lumia's 950 and 950 XL. Though it has since improved, the overarching theme of this relatively unpopular OS, which has only been emphasized with Windows phone's decline, is that Windows 10 Mobile is an incomplete work in progress. And not because the OS is an ever evolving software-as-a-service. For many fans, however, Windows 10 Mobile serves thier needs, and many will remain committed to the platform despite Microsoft's using them as free beta testers of features on a product that may soon be phased out. We've endured so much already after all. What are your thoughts.🤔
  • so MS is effectively put phones on backburner. WoA n ultramobile PCs will only complement phones n not replace it. so MS is not looking for a share in mobile pie at least for now. without a share in Low/Medium range, Ms cannot make a return to phones market. I'll now wait for SE2 or Nokia 8/9.
  • If I was in charge of Microsoft Windows I would do this: Replace WinMo with WoA. Bring all Windows Phone apps to the Windows 10 store. Allow Android emulators in the app store for ARM devices, but don't publish Android apps in the store. Make Cortana smartwatches, thermostats, speakers, in-car as companions for every OS.
    Build a device ecosystem around Cortana the way Amazon is doing with Alexa. Instead of competing with Android/iOS compete with the Alexa ecosystem. Move Microsoft Wallet functionality into Cortana. Focus heavily on getting retail stores/banks to support significant Cortana integration. Use the Samsung pay method to work with magnetic strip credit card systems. Expand Cortana to include use of mobile device cameras and NFC (Cortana can deposit your checks at your banks, manage your wallet/credit cards/gift cards payments, identify objects and it's dimensions, guess the age of a person, update your social media accounts, find the best prices on goods, order food from local restaurants, recommend music based on your mood, inform you when your friends are playing a specific Xbox game etc.). Move HoloLens to WoA and recruit LG, HTC, and Huawei to build consumer versions of HoloLens. Enable continuum docking for HoloLens. Create a foldable 4-in-1 Surface Mobile that runs on WoA (phablet, tablet, laptop keyboard cover, desktop continuum).
  • Sounds really easy, I wonder why nobody who's in charge at Microsoft has thought this.
  • Thumbs up! That's the way to go and never give up on regular costumers, young or old!
  • Wow, I thought of the same thing this morning. Put Cortana in everything they can. They need to make Edge for Android and IOS with Cortana Built in it. They also need a Cortana Extension in FireFox, Chrome, Vivaldi, Opera
  • They should have done this back when Cortana WAS the best. Right now it can't even repeat a text message after it reads it the first time. It has a LONGGGGG way to go to compete with Alexa.
  • Maybe I'm missing something, but I haven't had Alexa read me a text message at all. Echo based messages and notifications yea, but not text messages. She has no clue I even own a phone. 
  • Sure lets emulate android OS on windows ..AND SLOW DOWN THE SYSTEM!, you must be living in a dream cause android emulations don't run on 32mb of ram(it needs a whole emulation layer and an entire app store handler service+user account for the google store=a jumbled up mess) they are meant to hog memory unlike Windows or iOS the difference of OS optimization is clear as day vs night, allowing android emulators in the store = stepping on peoples rights to complain about patent infringement, that's the last thing Microsoft needs from google. We already had enough with YouTube being turned into a link(no google apps whatsoever on a market of 500million+ windows 10 devices where pretty much all the TOP social sites have already made their apps not to mention in UWP) and Microsoft being slapped in the face by googles monopoly to control its market. Samsung pay method ? are we talking about stepping on another patent right landmine yet again cause i think things aren't simple like that nor would systems/programs work so easily out of nowhere, its not a piece of puzzle to simply place and fix, different platform different hardware, different methods. HoloLens is something that is unique in its own and has a good future once introduced to the market through Microsoft, nevertheless should or would Microsoft release information on such a valuable/profitable/defining/landscaping product to companies that could simply dish it out for other platforms rather than using it for the benefit of Windows 10 cause i don't see others like Google/Apple willing contributing anything to Microsoft's latest platform that which has gained notable traction. its past mid 2017, google has yet to introduce a valid/useful app to the Windows store. A true Microsoft user would prefer to seek solutions from within the platform rather than making it into some kind of emulation lagfest/store profit & dev interest killer like blackberry turned out cause once you let the bugs in, they never go out again...ever, and some of us truly know how that ended. lastly, i don't see Apple's Siri everywhere nor Google Voice on other platforms as a single service untied to one of their products, providing a entire product untied to Microsoft's platform = making the platform itself unnecessary = death of platform, something so simple yet unseen to the not so keen eye. You do have some nice idea's but implementation is "key" file , products and services go hand in hand thus profit is gained only if both are tied together Cortana is a service and Windows 10 is a product if everyone had access to Cortana's services completely without Windows 10 then nobody needs Windows 10 they can just have Cortana ..whats the selling point ? = no platform gain, you could say "future market building or sum it up as future investment" but this is a product in a business, if we give out the whole candy jar instead of giving the candy is there any real purpose for that customer to come back again tomorrow?.
  • Some of the things you talk about are highly capable, and what we expect, of a quantum computer....
  • Hire this man.
  • Cortana?lol it's not even available in most parts of the world. Typical pure American thinking that America is the world well it's not.
    Look at Windows phone it had a a nice share in Europe but MS never did anything to boost or use that they even killed the only company Nokia who did care.
    Bing the same thing only US focused.
  • Nokia didn't care very long. They were leaving because whatever share they gained in Europe wasn't sustainable. It didn't matter how many L520 they sold at a loss if those customers didn't upgrade to better Windows phones and didn't buy apps.
  • I am classy European, but I get it dude, and you should too. After all these are all american corporations and they have the centiment to release their products first if not only in america.
  • English Cortana allowed globally.
    Cortana language & country settings and phone language & country settings ALL totally separated.
    Continue expanding local language Cortana very fast.
    Spread Cortana everywhere! (IoT, cars ... imagine all of it)
  • Who can trust MS that is even dumping PCs support because of the processor? Who would buy a phone or whatever you want to call it to soften the fact that MS Dumped us? Since my ICOn is was already clear MS had no idea about phones and then I fell for the 950.  Just usefull for the bare needs but nothing else.  What a waste. MS only cares about enterprise not consumers and this is the plain trhuth.
  • It's Intel, that is dumping support. Maybe they are punishing Microsoft for WinOnARM.
  • Wait until your WoA PC stops receiving updates after 2 years because Qualcomm doesn't provide driver support any longer!
  • As far as W10M is concerned, it's been updated to the point to where it's perfectly fine, if not pleasurable, for everyday use. Grove, OneDrive, Office, all work great, and the experience is getting better. Of course it could use a few more helpful features, but this is in no way as incomplete as WP7.0... The only thing I need at this point are apps, and devices.
    But, I understand that going forward there's no use in worring about a future smartphone running W10 mobile.... My point is that if MS intends on using all of the elements of W10M for the mobile UI element in Cshell for devices like "Surface Phones" I'm ok with that. I'm not only ok with it, but W10M's start screen, and the other W10 mobile elements we see, and use, today are what I want to see on a "Surface Phone"... This stuff needs to carry over, and from what we see with the insider program, the intent seems to be just that.. MS's continued development of W10M is not a waste of time, it's the opposite. In actually it's probably not the development of W10M rather the mobile "section" of Cshell. That alone should tell us that MS has intent to keep Windows in our pockets. It's a no brainer.
  • Rumors indicate the W10M replacement won't look anything like Windows phone. They would be crazy to keep that failed UI. They should allow manufacturers to create their own shells even if they can't add features. I will be surprised if that happens though. Microsoft is no longer the platform for "choice".
  • No, rumors suggest that. Just stop. You're annoying. Quit replying to my comments. Go away, and stop your negative trolling. That's your first warning.
  • "I have been hearing about the software update for some time and the added hardware component makes sense as the company is pursuing “new experiences” with this device. Additionally, the UI is expected to be different than what we know today as Windows Mobile but the exact changes are still evolving as we are in the early days of development of this experience."
    Thurrott more than suggested that. Microsoft would be crazy to create another Tile interface device. How many times do you think it should fail before they leave it behind? 
  • Unless they plan to launch in 5 years, there will be tiles. Because if they don't want tiles they could remove them in the Fall Creators update. I don't think that there is a single person who hates tiles. Yes they might hate many half baked apps that were made in the era of modern Windows, but not the tiles itself.
  • Tile isn't going anywhere. It is on W10. If they are making one Windows, it will have tile capability.
  • Then it will fail like every single product they have released that centered with Tiles. I don't think they will continue it. It would be madness at this point.
  • The one Windows thing is over. They split Mobile from W10M development. They may still run the same apps and core but there is no indication that the UI will stay the same. Tiles are marginalized in W10, it wouldn't be hard for Microsoft to remove them and if Windows 8 is any indication, complaints would be minimal.
  • I said stop responding to me. I'm calling harassment. Last warning. I'm not playing with you. I will report you.
  • Can't handle being wrong?
  • Yes, I can't handle being wrong. Now, I'm claiming harassment. Reporting you. This is my Last communication with you.
  • Typical MS fanboy...can dish it but not take it....whats wrong Rodney....assless chaps on the harley too tight?
  • rodney, cut the crap fanboy. Wake up from your fantasy dream already and stop kissing MS @$$.
  • Why?
  • because your kool-aid drinking fanboy drivel is getting really old.....we all know that w10m is going to be totally put in the "trench" very soon.   To think otherwise shows that you have way to much MS kool-aid in your veins.  Maybe its all those vibrations from the hardly doing it to you.  ha ha ha.
  • I personally think that MICROSOFT should DITCH QUALCOMM and partner up with NVIDIA and include an DESKTOP BASED GPU like the TEGRA X2 and also become the 1st company to include 16 to 32 gigabytes of fast RAM for AAA GAMING ON THE GO
  • 😂😂😂😂😂
    For Qualcomm to be working with MS in mobile is a blessing, if not for the name alone.
  • I totally agree!!! Google used the X1 with a Maxwell GPU in the Pixel C tablet and it is still fast and fluid. The Nvidia processors if they can work with telephony would seem like a good platform to build upon. Also there are several people on here that should really think outside of the box. I'm 54 and I am excited about the future of tech. Tech doesn't have to look like what I think it should. Some new things show up that I have never seen nor have ever thought of. Doesn't mean that they are not good because I didn't think of them or even like the new item or idea. Maybe look beyond the cell phone. Because I grew up in a time where phones were on the wall at my house and a personal computer had to have cassette tapes to run on and were bought at Radio Shack. The world is wide open for stuff to be invented. There is no telling what will be created during your lifetime. Don't change for the sake of change, change for the sake of something better!!!
  • Doesn't matter at this point. You already pointed out that MS doesn't need the remaining WP user base. I agree. MS might as well milk it for whatever they can still get out of it, although I'm sceptical this even amounts to a public beta test anymore. Everything being delivered to W10M users is merely a side affect of efforts made for W10. Nothing more. W10 is what matters (which is the same thing as W10oA). Anyway, the phrase "powered by CShell" is weird. CShell is a launcher. It's the UI layer of the OS. CShell doesn't power anything. That's like saying a BMW is powered by the steering wheel. The UI is a control point, like a steering whell, not like the motor.
  • @Jason Ward, some questions 4you: Did Microsoft forced you or anyone to be free beta tester?  Do you think that we'll have one platform on the same OS for all devices in the near future and could it be still "Windows insider" for Windows or MS is going to shut down the entire insider program? Can you be just happy because of an exciting future and the new tehnologies & new device/es? At least try for a moment!
  • Jason I have warned these guys above about trolling on me. Ive gave them multiple warnings and now they are harassing me. I have told them that I do not wish to communicate with them any longer, and I will not answer to their comments any longer. Now I'm asking WC to do thier part and let these guys know that intentional harassment, and trolling is not allowed. I will hit the report buttons for each person that I have asked to leave me alone. Thanks for your help.
  • Waaaaahhhhhhh.....Rodney can't take it....WAAAAHHHHHHH....give it but can't take it.  The harley brotherhood would so dissapointed...your supposed to be a bad ass when Riding one....not a whiney little snowflake....
  • im confused Jason. why is all the talk about the impending end of W10 mobile and yet, and yet, Microsoft keep this system breathing when in fact it wont be the system they use when the new MobileWhatever comes out whenever it is supposed to? maybe I have misread the articles but i am confused, cheers, drew.
  • I'm in agreement with you. The only ones calling for the death of Win10 Mobile are the new media outlets. Microsoft has repeatedly said, time and time again, that they are not giving up on Win10 Mobile. They continue to release upgrade after upgrade to it. The Microsoft apps are constantly being updated and pushed out. We may not like how they are going about it, the fact that they lost a huge user base and opportunity when they bought Nokia and then left them, however, that doesn't mean they are leaving Win10 Mobile. The full Win10 on Arm doesn't even make sense for mobile phones unless they are basically going to replicate the UX interface on phones exactly as it is today but provide the entire x32/x64 architecture in Continuum to run full apps. In which case, what's the different between Win10 Mobile + Continuum vs. Win10 on ARM + Continuum? Sounds like the same end goal at that point which is to provide a "mobile" UX interface but the ability to run full 32/64bit apps, so why call for the death of Win10 "Mobile" when it may be nothing more than just shifting the platform slightly to add proper emulation to it?
  • Yep, even in a very recent article on WC I noted MS at high level poo-pooed the idea of W10 ARM making it to pocketable devices, stating they have WM10 for that, and saying W10 ARM is for desktop style experiences on fairly large devices only. So for a new class of laptop or Surface style 2-in-1. Perhaps in slimline desktop devices. Not in the 'ultra portable' world. Perhaps that will change, this is MS after all so trust isn't really a factor here, but right now MS are making some confusing statements that very much under one the concept being pushed by this article.
  • The big difference is that Continuum on W10M cannot run x32/x64 apps, not even store packaged ones through Centenial.  It can only run Store apps which are adapted to Continuum. With Windows on ARM, Continuum would run x32/x64 apps and hopefully not only store packaged ones but regular ones.
  • WoARM will x86, not x64...
  • It'll be ARM64 not x86 or x64. However it will have the ability to run applications built for win32 (x86) using an emulation layer and native ARM64 applications.
  • Because it gives them a platform to work out issues with Cshell and resizing for apps and whatever else in this dimension of scale.
  • W10M technical elements (code) is still Windows 10 code.. This code is active code, and the elements can be used in future W10 products, and system like with Cshell... What you're using today technically isn't going anywhere, rather merging with 'desktop" if you want to look at it like that... One OS that's literally adaptable across form factors, and screen size. The "final" step in One Windows... So, what you see as continued development for "W10M" is just development for elements to be extracted, and used, with Cshell... The naming is arbitrary, so don't let it put up walls in your mind. XBOX, Desktop, Mobile, HoloLens, IOT, are just Windows 10 code. UIs are skin deep.. Imaging CShell as just skin deep, and Windows as all being the same on the inside.... The main thing to understand is that with W10, and W10M (the core), MS did all the work to where the elements are compatible. We've past that point a few years ago... Now, MS can play around with W10, making new "versions" as they please. For example W10s.. Just a version of W10. This is where MS dreamed of being a decade ago, and now they're here... This is what will make a Surface Phone not jut a smartphone, but special, a true PC. This is what ends separate update branches. Your Surface Phone, Pro, Laptop, Desktop, HoloLens, Xbox, and whatever, will update on a single W10 branch, if MS has it's way... Sick.. And, that also means that MS as a company will have to work as a single entity, instead of a bunch of non synergistic divisions. That will benefit all. That has tremendous benefits for developers. Think about that.
  • Some good points, rodneyej. A lot of the naysayers seem to forget about MS's long term push for one Windows and a unified platform. We are witnessing those first steps in the (soon to be) unified W10.
  • Actually, we're witnessing the third step!!... The first true steps started way back with Windows 8, then the launch of W10 on different form factors.. Now, they are pulling W10 together. The 4th step will be the last step towards a completely unified platform.
  • @rodneyej And no, you're still wrong about this. There will always be a version of W10M that is seperate from W10. It likely won't be called W10M, but it will still be W10 without Win32, which is all W10M is.
  • cant blame him, WC carried over this message for a long time. Even WoA will not be same/close to same as W10, its more of W10M with X86 emulation.
  • I don't blame rodneyej for not understanding. I do blame him for speaking as though his understanding of the subject were far beyond what it actually is though. However, I disagree with you too. W10oA will in fact just be W10, simply recompiled for ARM and with an x86 emulator thrown in. That is all. W10oA will include Win32, which instantly makes it completely very different from W10M, as not includeing Win32 is W10M's defining trait. Providing a x86 emulator for an OS like W10M, which due to the lack of Win32 will only ever run UWP apps, makes no sense, since UWP apps are generally architecture neutral, i.e. they will run on any CPU without an emulator. The whole W10oA naming borders on being a marketing gimick. We've had plenty of versions of Windows in the past which ran on CPU architectures different from x86. Intel Itanium. Alpha. MIPS, PowerPC. None of these versions of Windows got a different name. They were all just Windows. If we went back to a more technical time with less marketing W10oA would also just be called W10. With the exception of the added x86 emulator and the compiler used to traslate the source code into executable binary format, there is not difference between W10 and W10oA.
  • Nopers... Cshell will fool users like you into thinking there are different versions...🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄
    What is so hard for some of you guys to understand the concept of one OS that can "shape shift" to fit any device form factor, or screen?
    Why are you not getting that?
    Naming is arbitrary. With Cshell there will be only one Windows, but it will appear to look different, and behave different, because the shell is adaptable, modular. No, only one version of Windows. We've been talking about this for years....
    What you guys are talking about is the CURRENT way MS has different iterations of Windows10 on XB, Desktop, Mobile, HoloLens, IOT, and so fourth. That is not what MS is planning for the FUTURE. MS wants One Windows that's intelligent enough to adapt on the fly for any form factor. That's what Cshell is all about.
    You're talking about now, I'm taking about the future of Windows with Cshell.
  • I can guarantee you that my undertanding of CShell, what it is, how it works, and what it can and can't do is far beyond your own. I understand what you think I'm not grasping. You are wrong. The irony is that your own understanding of the topic is too shallow for you to see that it's you who is missing the real point. If you think MS will install all of Windows Server on an IoT device then you are seriously delusional. I really hope that's not what you're thinking. Those two versions of Windows are the two extremes. MS will continue to ship those to versions of Windows seperately, and also a few intermediary versions that cull further components from the distribution the smaller/slimmer the distribution is. That will not change However, all these versions of Windows will be generated from the same code baser. That is what "One Windows" refers to. You have a very naive view that "One Windows" refers to the binary components of each distribution and that these will actually be the same for every device Windows runs on. That is just FUD.
  • @andrew bainbridge The folks at WCentral are also baffled by this. That's why you're not really getting explanations. This all makes more sense when you stop viewing W10M as a seperate product. MS has one Windows code base. From that they can generate every version of Windows. That includes W10M, W10/W10oA, W10 IoT etc. These different versions of Windows are defined only by which parts MS ommits from that code base. The largest version (W10 Server) includes everything while the smallest version includes almost nothing beyond OneCore (W10 IoT). The biggest delta in ommited functionality occurs between W10 and W10M. That step omits Win32. That's all W10M is... it's MS version of Windows without Win32! This version of Windows, the one that omits Win32, is something MS must keep around even if they don't offer it to customers/consumers. It's relevant to MS strategically. W10M is the most efficient and cheapest vehicle though which MS can privide UWP compatibility. In that sense W10M represents the purest form of Window's future. Given the same economies of scale, W10M will also run on much cheaper hardware than W10 ever will. Assuming MS doesn't give up on UWP, W10M will return at some point, although likely under a different name. However, at the end of the day, it will still be the exact same thing W10M has always been... MS' version fo Windows without Win32. That's why what we currently call W10M isn't dead and that's why MS will continue to develop it. However, W10M isn't just a smartphone OS. Even at its earliest stages it was also designed to run on tablets. We just think of it as a smartphone OS since that's all we've ever seen it on. With CShell W10M is now also a desktop OS (albeit limited to UWP and continuum enabled software). That's W10M's future. That's the role W10M is destined for and it will continue to evolve towards that goal. You're just not allowed to misinterpret that as MS intending to keep W10M on current smartphone around any longer than they must. At least for the moment, W10M on smartphones is dead, but the version of Windows without Win32 (what we currently call W10M) is alive and well. When (if?) we'll ever get a device running that version of Windows again is anyone's guess however.
  • After Creators update Windows 10 Mobile is removed from that single code base and it is not known when how and if it is going back.
  • @labsii Nobody I've talked to at MS shares your opinion. They actually claim the opposite. I'm calling BS. You have a source? Could it be that you're confusing "will no longer provide updates for existing W10M devices" with "is being removed from the code base"? Those aren't the same things. Removing W10M from the Windows code base isn't even really possible, because W10M is just a subset of W10. You can't remove it from the Windows code base without braking everything related to UWP for W10.
  • Windows 10 Mobile is not built from the current version of the Windows code, that's official. So now there is a code base from which new versions of Windows 10 Mobile are built and the code base for other SKUs which is enough to prove my claim that there is no more a single code base.  
  • @labsii You are misinformed, or poorly expressing yourself. There are multiple versions of W10M. They are all W10M however (some will later be merged back into the trunk while others will not be). The name of the branch from which updates are created and shipped out to customers using W10M smartphones is called feature2. This is simply a previous version of the W10 source code, which also includes W10M. There are many other branches from which W10M can also be built. MS maintains a seperate branch for almost every major feature in development. For example, CShell is also being developed in a seperate and newer branch (newer than feature2). W10M can also be built from the current W10 branch. Just because it's not being provided to you doesn't mean it doesn't exist.  
  • " W10M can also be built from the current W10 branch." " You have a source?" Oh I forgot you are the god and you don't need the source, you are the source, you can only ask other people for sources, your opionions are granted to be truth.
  • Yes, I do have a source. The MS employee's I work with as a software engineer. Having contacts isn't necessary though. You can just go back and read WCentral's article on CShell development. It is clearly stated that development occurs in a newly created branch. If MS can build W10M in that new branch, then they can clearly also build it from the trunk (current version of W10)  that it was branched from. Clearly I'm not a God. There is no reason to get snarky just because someone else knows more. 
  • We're not talking about what Microsoft 'could' do, but what they do. They could invest some money and build the phone if they want but they don't want to. There isn't a big difference between their decision not to build phones and their decision not to build Windows 10 Mobile from the current code base - it is a matter of their lack of commitment to the current platform. If you want to say that there is someone in Microsoft who consciously stopped all those new Windows 10 features to come to Mobile as they can do that but they don't want their consumers to receive the new features, then it should really raise a red alarm. So basically there are just two options - either Microsoft is trying to test the nervs of their customers in which case you are right (but it doesn't sound reasonable at all), OR they gave up of development of Windows 10 Mobile. I fully agree that the code is device independent and that in the future they can use it for whatever including building Windows 10 Mobile if they decide to invest some money in it. But if you don't understand that 'can' means nothing if that option is not used and no one intends to use it, watch Monty Python's 'Meaning of Life', first scene as far as I remember. Yes there will be probably a new form factor that will have an OS that will borrow at least something from previous Windows 10 Mobile efforts, but that's all I can say.
  • I personally believe it's the merging of elements from W10M into proper W10, and using Cshell to determine what form factor displays what, and how it behaves. Giving us 1 Windows that's suitable for any device. One modular version, rather than several version based off W10. That's what MS is working towards. What you guys are explaining is what we have now with Xbox, WM, W10, and HoloLens. That is not the future... The future is one modular W10 that can work acro