Skip to main content

Windows 10X: Everything you need to know

Windows 10x Mock Laptop Close
Windows 10x Mock Laptop Close (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

Windows 10X was a new version of Windows that has been built from the ground up for new PCs, and was supposed to begin shipping on hardware in 2021. It's built on top of a new modern version of Windows called 'Windows Core OS' that guts legacy components and features in favor of contemporary user experiences and enhanced security.

Unfortunately, Microsoft has announced that development on Windows 10X has been postponed and will not be launching on new PCs this year. In fact, it's unlikely Windows 10X will ever launch now that Microsoft is working on a big new user experience refresh for Windows Desktop codenamed Sun Valley and expected to launch at the tail-end of this year.

Either way, this article remains as a look-back at some of the new experiences and changes Microsoft had pioneered with Windows 10X.

A new user experience

Windows 10X

Source: Microsoft (Image credit: Source: Microsoft)

Windows 10X featured a new shell — the user interface — that was built with modern technologies. It's an adaptive user experience that can adjust depending on the "posture" of your device. For example, with a foldable PC, the user might want to use it in several different ways; as a laptop, or tablet, or in tent mode for movies. Because of this, the user interface must adapt to provide the best experience no matter which way your device is being used.

This also means that legacy shell elements, such as the Control Panel, File Explorer, and error dialogs and icons are gone on Windows 10X. As Microsoft has rebuilt the entire shell, it doesn't include any of the legacy things that makes Windows 10 so inconsistent when it comes to UI. The Windows Shell on Windows 10X should be much more consistent.

A new Start menu

Windows 10X Start

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Microsoft had redesigned the Start menu experience on Windows 10X with a focus on productivity. It features a system-wide search bar along the top that can also search the web, and a grid of installed apps below that in place of live tiles.

It also has a "recent activities" area that dynamically updates with things the user might want to jump straight into, such as recent Office documents and visited websites. The apps list can be customized, with the ability for users to rearrange which apps show up in the first few rows.

A new Taskbar

10x Taskbar Preview

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Windows 10X also had a new adaptive Taskbar that features a centered design. The Start and Task View buttons appear in the center, with running and pinned apps appearing between the two. When you open an app, the Start and Task View buttons gently spread apart, giving the Taskbar a much more fluid appearance.

There are some new animations; the Start and Task View buttons have their own animations when clicked on, and there's a subtle bounce to app icons when you minimize running apps to the Taskbar. In addition to the new design, there's also up to three different Taskbar sizes: Small, medium and large. Large is great for tablets, while medium and small mimic the usual sizes we already have today on Windows 10.

On tablets, users can now swipe up anywhere on the Taskbar to access the Start menu, making it easier for touch users to access their apps list. You no longer have to hit the specific Start button to access your Start menu.

A new Action Center

Windows 10X Ac

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

In addition to the new Start and Taskbar experiences, there was also a new Action Center to compliment them. This new Action Center puts more emphasis on quick actions, with the ability to jump into specific quick actions for further control without leaving the Action Center at all.

It's also designed in such a way that mimics a control center, with notifications housed above it in a separate box. This new Action Center includes things like volume controls, power options, and battery percentage. There's also a new music control UI that appears in the Action Center when music is playing from a supported app.

A new set up experience

Windows 10x Oobe

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Since every part of Windows 10X has been redesigned, the out of box experience has too been updated with a modern look and feel. It still walks you through the Windows setup process, selecting your language, signing-in with a Microsoft Account, and agreeing to terms and conditions, but Cortana is no longer present throughout the set up process. It's a more traditional setup experience, that's been beautified on 10X.

The new File Explorer

File Explorer 10X

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Since Windows 10X has a modern core, legacy components such as the classic File Explorer are no longer present. This means Microsoft has built a new File Explorer specific to Windows 10X, and it's built around OneDrive. Windows 10X is a web-first OS, and that includes how you store and manage files on your Windows 10X PC. By default, all your files are synced with your OneDrive account in the cloud while also being available locally on the device.

Improved Windows Update

Windows Update

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Microsoft is also improving Windows Update in a way that makes it much faster on Windows 10X. Feature updates will not take as long to install as they do on Windows 10 as those feature updates are now installed in the background without requiring a reboot until the update is done. So, just like on Android and Chrome OS, when the update is ready to restart your PC, it'll just restart like normal, and won't take 15 minutes to finish installing before you're back up and running.

This should result in updates that take less than 90 seconds to reboot. Internal testing suggests it's even faster than that. This is a huge improvement over how Windows 10 does updates today, which can take anywhere between 5 minutes and 20 minutes to reboot, depending on the device.

Secure by default

10x Windows Defender

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Unlike Windows 10, Windows 10X featured something called "state separation" which is how the OS lays itself out on a drive. Windows 10 today installs everything into a single partition, which means the user can access system files, as can apps and potential attackers. On Windows 10X, everything goes into its own read-only partition. So OS files are locked away, as are app files, as are drivers, and the registry. The only thing the user and applications can access are the user partition.

This means that malware or viruses can't get in and affect the system, because those programs are only able to operate in a single partition, and that assumes they're able to get outside of the app container system Microsoft has built. All apps on Windows 10X run in a container, and need explicit permissions to access things that are outside that container. This is already how UWP apps work on Windows 10, and Microsoft will be extending that to Win32 apps on Windows 10X when support for Win32 apps arrives.

Coming never?

Microsoft announced earlier this year that Windows 10X had been postponed beyond 2021, and that it was instead prioritizing bringing the best of Windows 10X over to the full version of Windows. This means that Windows 10X will likely never ship, but that a lot of the Windows 10X UX will ship as part of the Sun Valley project instead.

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows 10 on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

189 Comments
  • That picture, right there, is why this is just stupid.
  • How is it stupid?
  • No tile in the palette
  • What picture are your referring to?
  • You mean the one where Panos is holding an imaginary Mango?
  • Who doesn't want more mangoes? :>
  • DRdiver is probably referring to the first pic, which is obviously a concept due to the thin bezels.
  • I think he is referring to the photo were that lady holding surface neo & panos's hand gesture.
  • Lol I wonder why
  • Come on give us a reason or admit you are just moaning for the sake of it
  • As you open more apps, the Start button will continue to move farther to the left, as all open apps will display their icon's centered on the taskbar. At some point, the Start button will end up back on the left, so why not just keep it there, in it's familiar location, to begin with?
  • I don't see a problem either way.
    Familiar is a nicer way of saying OLD.
    10X is looking to be a playground for leaving the OLD behind, as OLD is slowing down progress. Don't be an old man on the porch about it.
  • It's definitely a problem when icons move from their familiar location!
  • Yes, maybe they have an setting for to switch between left, right, or centered.
  • It's not about old or familiar, it's about breaking fundamental UX design rules. MS at times tends to break old rules for the sake of breaking rules, not improving UX. People like to keep things they use frequently to fixed places since prehistoric stone age so they know where to reach for one when they need to use one. Making the Start button position non-fixed simply means people can't intuitively reach for it at a fixed position, which goes against basic UX design rules and human nature. Oh well, a possible explanation for such a non-sensical design is that MS is still trying to make people to use gestures and get rid of the Start button altogether like they have tried and failed in Windows 8 (where they put it back in Windows 8.1). So this time instead of a sudden disappearance of the Start button, they gradually make it harder and harder to use, then maybe people will finally gave up the habit of clicking the Start button and use gestures instead.
  • Having the Start Menu move on the screen isn't intuitive, I think having it centralised is a good idea, but don't have it move, although if it is centralised it should be on the left or right edge, as that is more likely to be where your hands would be when using the device in a tablet mode.
  • Back with Android Honeycomb, the system buttons were on the left side as well. But today Android positions the system buttons on the center on tablets. So probably it has better usability or most users just prefer it this way, things centered.
  • System buttons in the center of the tablet? Could you elaborate?
  • I think he refers to the home & back & tabs buttons. It is hard to see them (I forgot how fugly Android looked) -> https://techgyomax-srjcooldude.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/03...
  • Ah, I see... Thanks! 👍 I usually think of them as navigation buttons.
  • Your welcome, yeah usually they are called navigation buttons I think.
  • Microsoft actually did tons of studies before Windows 8 (check the old Windows Blogs). It’s actually better to have everything on the horizontal edges of the screen, because that’s where users hold their devices. There’s “heat maps” available showing that. My guess is that they moved it to the middle specifically to distance it from traditional Windows, as a way to break expectations.
  • I haven't done a search for the mentioned heat maps, but how the heck is it normal to hold your device on the horizontal edge?!? I hold my phone and tablet on the vertical edges 99% of the time; I don't even know how I would operate the things holding them the other way...?
  • None of that makes sense in the first place. If you are holding your Surface or iPad, you don't hold it from either edge. You hold it with one hand and use the other to interact. It is ridiculous to think you hold something big like an iPad or Surface and only rely on the reach of your thumbs!
  • There are some circumstances. Sometimes when I commute I don't have space to fold out the keyboard and the split keyboard gives another option
  • The difference is that the navigation buttons are always at fixed places, while this new "Start button" design makes it moving to arbitrary positions as you install and pin more programs to the taskbar. Another such UX issue example is that for different Android phone vendors, some place the "Back" button at the left of the Home button, while others place it at the right, and it's a UX nightmare when you switch phones between two such vendors, always took a week or so before getting used to the "new way" to intuitively pressing "Back" correctly. Thankfully nowadays a lot of the vendors let the user to config how the navigation buttons are placed, so no more such UX nightmares when switching phones.
  • Agreed, makes sense to just dump that stuff to the left, would make it easier to reach it with a thumb too.
  • I actually, have the tray set up in the middle. At most I have 5 apps opened at once, maybe 6 if I'm editing photos. It looks cleaner and "newer" I also added power toys to it. I welcome the change, people will come around it once they try it out.
  • Honestly, that Start screen just looks like they took the MS Android launcher and slapped it on the middle of the page then called it a day. Functional? Yes. New? Not really. More interested in how it'll support legacy programs and the new update system as the UI most definitely isn't exciting.
  • Don't judge yet before you see how it actually is used. You might be right, but no point in judging based off speculation.
  • But we have seen it used at the Surface event. It seems they are just reinventing the taskbar and Start Menu. Are those outdated though? Can you go back to the way it was after you tried to do something else with Live Tiles and the competition has made their own version? I know it's terrible to say, but maybe the Start Menu is outdated. And the icons seem to be fashioned around the Office app icons which doesn't seem appealing. Microsoft can't just make everything shiny and blurry and say "That's good, right?" I like the desktop concept presented in this article. https://www.windowscentral.com/beyond-foldables-where-microsoft-headed-w... If there is one thing I really want Microsoft to do is make the taskbar a dock by not having it "hinged" to the screen and getting rid of the empty space between apps and clock. A dock is something that several concepts have shown. There were a bunch after Windows 8 came out and people were speculating about Windows 10. Windows 8.2 (9) By Andrew Ambrosino
    https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3692/12226171385_05b5897af8_b.jpg Windows 9 By Jerry Jappinen
    https://farm8.staticflickr.com/7395/12226514973_c7dae690fd_b.jpg A Modern Desktop by Michael West
    https://uxdesign.cc/designing-a-new-windows-shell-introducing-fluid-desk... Desktop Concept by Jonas Daehnert
    https://twitter.com/PhoneDesigner/status/1181556668045369346?s=20
  • Those docks either look really similar or not so readable (the transparent one). Either way if you want a dock, why not just make the W10 taskbar transparent, you get a very similar result (the rest of the differences are minimal).
    Personally I still think W10 start menu is the best (aside from a bug that hides icons). The fact that you can resize/reshape tiles and put shortcuts in groups/clusters makes it much more handy / productive than start menu's of iOS, Android, MacOS etc. The only downside is that you have to manually organize/structure it (not that much work but people are lazy).
  • Eh, isn’t there literally DECADES of Microsoft UI design to make a very educated guess about how it will look and work? Microsoft has never, ever been known for good software design, and people are so used to the bad design, that when they actually do GOOD design (Windows Phone 7), people react to it negatively because of their expectations. Microsoft is the khakis of computer OS: there’s no such thing as designer khakis.
  • First things first, calm down! And English is not my native language. I'm signing up to this site just for trying to reply your comment. This is not about "Ugh copying Android, bla bla bla." You should consider usability. The Touchscreen panel and left/right handed people. That UI is fair enough rather than put start button on the left bottom. Judging is easy, thinking is difficult.
  • Kindly don't tell me to calm down or attempt to put words in my mouth about usability (I said nothing about how usable it is or isn't). Offering an opinion that it doesn't look fresh hardly counts as being upset. If I say it looks like the Android launcher then that's because that's what it looks like to me. Nothing more, nothing less. As you said, "judging is easy, thinking is difficult". It would be great if you took your own advice.
  • maybe that's the whole point of ms launcher. so users find it familiar when they make the switch to windows x?
  • But MS launcher is for Android phones, and we've just been told W10X won't be coming to phone-sized devices, so there's no correlation...
  • Consistency helps. If people have some familiarity with the interface (in this case especially the tablet / mobile users) they are more inclined to buy it. It is just how are brain works, we dislike to much sudden changes, makes us feel uncomfortable and we find it irritating (cause you have to relearn things).
    Hence making it similar to the MS launcher makes sense since many people use Android, so there will be some familiarity but still be somewhat MS own/modern design.
  • People who use the MS launcher on Android are Windows users that want a familiar feel on their phone; not the other way around.
    This is a parallel product to regular Windows 10 PCs, and should strive for a familiarity with regular Windows; not smartphones.
  • I don’t know what’s familiar about MS Launcher on Android. It doesn’t follow Material Design guidelines, it doesn’t follow Fluent Design guidelines, it doesn’t look or behave like typical Android launchers. And also, the Windows 10x launcher doesn’t look at all like MS Launcher. It looks like Office.com’s website.
  • Where does the claim that people who use Microsoft launcher on Android are only people who use windows come from?
  • Can you look me straight in the eyes and say you think lots of Mac and Chrome OS users want the Windows experience on their Android devices...?
  • Chrome OS and Android tablets possibly yeah, Mac Os users probably won't buy Android phones but instead Iphones (mostly for the integration).
  • Not actually true, as Microsoft Launcher feels nothing like Windows 10 Mobile or any other previous version of Windows Phone. It's a completely different experience, with tie-ins with MS services. While Windows 10 X may not come to phone sized devices, it doesn't mean that MS hasn't used the user data FROM MS Launcher to determine what people like and how they use it, in order to add features that would potentially make Windows 10 X usable on a touchscreens.
  • If you think about it, Microsoft Launcher could have been the test base for this. Getting user experience on Android phones to see how people preferred to interact with a touch based interface. It's why I'm hoping, but I believe the Duo will likely have a version of MS Launcher pre-installed. It would only make sense. Of course, users could still choose to use other launchers or stock Android UI.
  • To be fair, the MS Android Launcher is pretty dope and I'd be happy with that in Windows 10X. I just wish you could tap on one of the large letters in the app drawer to bring up the alphabet (like on Windows 10 Mobile) and then select a letter to go to (or alternatively swap the side the lettering list is on for left handed people like myself, it isn't intuitive to use my left hand to hit the right side of the screen, and the letters are too high up for thumb use).
  • Considering this is supposed to be the modern version of Windows, does the absence of live tiles mean they are going to be abandoned in the modern era of Windows? If yes, why? I think live tiles are much more informative than static icons, why not to keep it as an option?
  • Why not update them so you can at least have music controls or other "advanced" functionality?
  • MS could have done this with live tiles, if they wanted. The reason I like Live tiles better than widgets is because they are all structured within a set of given boundaries, and are scaled to fit as a tile of a given size. A few widgets can be nice, some work well, but widgets on Android can't make up for the live tiles, even if some are more functional.
  • Agree about screen space management of live tiles vs widgets. But don't you think big live tiles are big enough to provide functions as simple as music controls.
  • I prefer live tiles too partially for the screen space management aspect and I would also hope if they do bring it back that they world further advance them.
  • Yes it would work but it would also take time to implement (for MS as well as for devs) and so it probably won't happen. Just like the whole exploding live tiles, extremely cool but just not popular enough (too different).
  • The bounds were terrible. They could only randomly show images. Nothing else. It isn't very Windows like to have such locked down features. Even Apple has full functional widgets. Live Tiles sucked. Face it. Windows phones and Windows wouldn't have failed so hard if they were truly useful. Android widgets could easily replicate Live Tiles, and I am sure there are some that are very similar. Why do you think you never see Widgets replicating Live Tiles?
  • Screen Bounds were good because it allows to cage live tiles in one single vertical scrolling pane or page unlike android widgets which requires multiple pages.
    Large & extra large live tiles are good but they should offer actionable functionality as well. But I hate medium & small live tiles. They serve no purpose other than filling whole screen. They are definitely no different then icons.
  • The small and medium tiles are good to show a number (like x new emails in outlook).
  • That's why I said small tiles are not any different than icons with badge notifications.
  • True, however small tiles will match the bigger tiles better design wise than icons with badge notifications, so you might as well use small tiles than.
  • But that was also the point of live tiles. You. Yes you as the user could decide if you wanted a small, medium, or large tile. If you didn't want a small tile guess what? You didn't have to have one. Choice is good.
  • What makes you think Android can't have vertical scrolling homescreens? I am sure you can find plenty of launchers that work that way.
  • Nah, the tiles are also handy for stuff like the weather app, agenda, data usage and notes etc. Much cleaner and better looking than widgets.
  • Those too were merely images. They weren't interactive at all. Live Tiles were merely images and Microsoft still couldn't get them to work right.
  • Microsoft designed live tiles as an alternative to notification center but they failed miserably at that & ended up making separate notification center and leaving live tiles forever half baked.
    Watch this video
    https://youtu.be/u5n7vdUaQsg
    I wish they had chosen the Orange one ( 4th in the video above ) instead of current start screen. Look how well new notification pops up with those clean icons at bottom of the screen & live tiles flipping horizontally.
  • I think live tiles can fit well with notifications, they can deliver different type of info (e.g. for weather otherwise you would need to have weather widget or such). Concerning looks, I personally like the last one the most.
  • I understand advantage of large size live tiles. but as a notification center they are inferior compared to other mobile os. The main reason was lack of actionable input. eg. They can't function as quick toggles to instantly on or off your data or wifi or gps etc.
    If the user have not pinned the live tile of " x " app & misses the notification on top then the user would never knew about it. Microsoft did bring something different with live tiles idea but they failed to move it forward imo.
  • Very true, I also think MS should have automated the process more instead of forcing users to pin it themselves manually. Like that when you install an app where the dev has set live tiles for large tile (e.g. Weather app), it automatically pins a large tile a with notification to toggle off this automatic process. Plus some intelligence to organize tiles etc. Would have been great I think but perhaps they were afraid some people would find annoying at first. MS was experimenting with an exploding view option for tiles to give them more choices but they probably realized it was to late and that it would possibly asked to much of devs to implement it in their apps.
  • Strange, my live tiles updates with real times content, be it the number of messages within an app, or information pulled from that app. If by interactive you say we can't interact with the tile directly, this is true, but nothing MS could not have made if they wanted. This would have required large/wide tiles, but that real estate is also needed with the interactive widgets. The outlook widgets on the other hand, interactive as they are, are useless. They take so much space you can't really have anything else than the calendar and email on a single homescreen.
  • Why are you all talking about widgets here? Windows 10X is a full PC OS; no need for widgets, and live tiles are only marginally useful...
  • Why not if it is optional? I would like to see stuff like the weather and notes/todo at one glance.
  • Studies have shown that people find their apps based more on colour and shape than on position. Live Tiles change colour and all have the same shape. Microsoft also found that people really don’t spend much time with Start open. It would really make more sense for Microsoft to bring back Gadgets or Live Desktop and make it easier for developers to include them in their apps the way iPhone apps have Widgets built in for a lot of them.
  • Live tiles can have different shapes, it is actually how MS wanted it (judging from their ads/previews) and makes sense. The reason why people don't spend much time with start open is because most people have Windows on their laptops or pc's where looking a lot at Start does not make sense, on a tablet however (Neo) it makes more sense (and besides the Surface Go there were hardly any good Windows tablets, most were too heavy (SP line) or bulky or cheap). Granted, live tiles made the most sense on WPhone.
  • Something like Rainmeter should be a standard part of windows. Changing info on the actual desktop is super handy, and the customisation that would offer would be also great. If they are building a modular shell for windows core (10x etc), then long term this really should be their goal - to let users mix and match approved UI elements.
  • That would be ideal. Even more so, if they had not killed Groove Music on Android. But, I've found a decent player to do this.
  • Seriously, what is the obsession with... MOAR SCREENS!
  • I can't tell you how many times at work I need two screens on the go. I reference a lot of material while taking notes and this would be great. I just hope people don't trash it because they don't fit into the mold of who would use this. Let's all appreciate the advancement in hardware and software that companies do.
  • Advancement? Replacing your laptop keyboard with another screen isn't exactly what I would call advancement. This is something we could have done 10 years ago easily, there just isn't much of a point.
  • The implementation is important here however. E.g. LG already has phones with 2 screens but it looks crappy / distracting, the Neo & Duo at least have a thinner center bezel (not perfect yet but at least it is a big step in the right direction).
  • On a phone it can make sense, especially like Duo. Being able to fold the second screen away will be key. You don't need to have the awkward second screen involved unless you need it. I foresee that the majority of the time you will keep the second screen folded away until you need a second app, at which point you will fold it out. Duo might be my next phone if they price it right. With the current design they need to keep it at iPhone 11 prices. If they modernize the design, (ie remove the huge bezels so it doesn't look like a couple iPhone 4s), then they can move toward iPhone 11 pro prices.
  • I think it will make sense on the Neo too buy yeah on the Duo it will be more important. Agreed about the prices, MS tends to price their products sometimes high to not make oems angry but the Duo probably won't have clones by MS partners so perhaps it will be priced fair.
  • To your point the Neo does have a physical keyboard that magnetically attaches to it. In addition if you want to take advantage of both screens it comes off and becomes a wireless keyboard. So If you are a road warrior looking for productivity without lugging a bigger device such as a laptop around and/or want two screens I think the Neo certainly is a good option.
  • That is exactly why I might be interested in the device, I'd much rather have 2 smaller screens than one larger screen, thing is, it would need to be cheap enough to be comparable to buying a laptop and extra portable screen.
  • It is simple, more screens = more screen area = higher productivity (depending a bit on the apps you use). While still being able to keep devices portable.
  • Seriously, what is this obsession with not letting anyone have a feature that you don't want?
  • I'm really curious if WSL2 will be supported. Anyone know?
  • Now where the hell is my new Windows phone?
  • it will come from a 3rd party that has more balls than Panos.
  • 3rd parties didn't support Windows phones when it was a thing. What makes you think they will now that it isn't?
  • If they can make W10X functional on smaller screens, there
    there's now a proper use case - full PC power in a pocket-sized package.
  • HP Elite X3X incoming!
  • Wait for some Chinese brand to make one as soon as W10x becomes more popular / is released.
  • 'It features a system-wide search bar along the top, with a grid of apps below that in place of live tiles' Sounds like the Start menu in WMR, which is terrible! I don't know; it may be more functional in a regular desktop environment...
  • I hope the Search is nothing like the Windows 10 search currently, it's absolute arse.
  • Using Windows 10 x on a small pocket PC call Zach phone.
  • And what is the use of Microsoft's Fluent Design System when it will not be on Duo? I really wonder how any developer will feel motivated to to apps in UWP when they will not run on Duo. Just splendid, Microsoft. You created an impotent ecosystem.
  • How many developers will feel motivated to build UWP apps even if they run on Duo? I don't see that number climbing above 0 either way. There is no point to developing for UWP when legacy will still be compatible with many more devices.
  • I expect that we'll see more interest in UWP once a decent majority of Windows devices in the wild support it, i.e. when Windows 10 is the dominant OS by a margin. With Windows 7 and even earlier versions still being so prevalent, you really are reducing your target audience by using UWP. I'm not sure that it will ever be what Microsoft hoped - not for a long time at least - but I would expect interest to increase over time. Keep in mind that the APIs available to UWP are better than those for apps using old tech in many areas and those areas will only become more important. Also, there are many devs who won't be interested in picking up UWP over what they're used to, but new devs coming in are more likely to show interest when they're not already invested in other areas. Also keep in mind that, as Windows 10 becomes more prevalent in the enterprise space, UWP will become more attractive to those developing in-house for such enterprises. It does have various advantages, including security. To be frank, I don't think that you have looked far past your own bias to consider all the pertinent factors. Sure, UWP hasn't been the raging success that Microsoft hoped but it's not going away any time soon and it's advantages will become more and more relevant to more and more people over time.
  • Is it just me or does Panos looks photoshopped in that image? (look at his head)
  • I actually thought the same thing, it's really weird, probably something to do with lighting.
  • He probably sneezed when they took the shot so they had to get another head from somewhere.
  • Hopefully Neo is a success, then MS can switch out Android for Win10X on Duo 2 or 3. Then Duo 2 or 3 can have Android app emulation with Android apps being available on the Windows Store. Sandbox them just like Win32 apps. That would be a more secure phone.
  • I wouldn't mind it running Android, but you dock it in a dock and up boots Windows 10X. I know people **** on Android, I myself do sometimes, but running Android apps in emulation probably won't end well. I remember doing that on my Blackberry Passport, until Android updated where their version in emulation was no longer compatible with the apps.
  • t
    folks the Microsoft Surface "Neo" is an intriguing design design to me. I hope it does not cost
    so much that Student cannot afford one. this device allows students to view a page from their
    text book on one screen and take notes or hand draw objects on the the other screen. it allows
    folks to view a machines operations on one screen & control it on the other screen. the new
    Windows 10X software will be ready I think for the Neo and the devices Microsoft's OEM partners
    will make because some of them are bringing out their devices next year also
  • Are you a spammer? You sound like a f*cking robot. It's like either you use Google Translate or just stupid. I notice your out of place weirdly structured comments not only here, but also on mspoweruser, so again, are you a spammer?
  • So we can use that device with the digital keyboard instead of the physical one if we want to? Now I am interested this device!
  • Wouldn't be as satisfying as using a physical keyboard but certainly more economical for people who don't do much typing.
  • Welp...Microsoft effed me in my @ss with the 1903 update on my Sony Vaio Tap 11. I did a reset of my Tap to renew it and was concerned about all the proprietary drivers I'd have to install for it after the reset. But to my amazement, the fresh Windows 10 install had it working like a new Surface computer. Everything, including graphics and Bluetooth was working...no proprietary driver or software needed be installed. OUTSTANDING! I was thrilled! Then Windows 10-1903 update happened! No more Bluetooth. And no way to get Bluetooth working again...even after installing the Sony proprietary drivers and software. Thank you, Microsoft, for effing me.
  • Welp? What does that mean?
  • Look man. It's a 7 year old device with proprietary drivers. At some point it becomes obsolete whether we like it or not. Doesn't mean Microsoft ****** you over. Have you tried rolling back? Did you have a recovery file?
  • "By default, apps on Windows 10X operate in full-screen and cannot be manipulated as traditional windows." This would be a mistake, it sounds like a Windows 8 where apps were forced to run full screen and we all know how that turned out. In my opinion the app should launch windowed and then a tap+hold then flick up should cause it launch full screen. tap+hold flick down should close the app.
  • Well yes it was a mistake with windows 8 because the OS was still used on regular PC's/laptops. Windows 10x, theoretically at least, is going to be on only newer/different form factors. You wouldn't see this on a traditional laptop or desktop computer. But even if there was a form factor with multiple input methods including mouse and keyboard, then the OS would be modified for that (I don't know whether or not that would still be called windows 10x or some other name).
  • So, why was 't the Surface X introduced with 10X ? these devices will surely be ARM ?
  • Windows 10X doesn't support ARM at present. Note that Surface Neo runs an Intel chip. Presumably they will be looking at ARM support at some stage - hopefully very soon - but not at launch. Quite possibly we'd see a Surface Pro X 2 running Windows 10X.
  • Big mistake imo. 10X should have been developed with ARM in mind from the beginning. They had the opportunity of clean slate and they screwed it once again, typical Microsoft
  • We might see it is a big mistake, but honestly ARM just isn't there yet for app compatibility. I love my Surface Pro X, but their goal with 10X is to give you everything Windows can in a nicer, more-lightweight UI. In order to do that you need to release a product that isn't limited by apps. I know they are working on ARM support for x86-64bit applications, but again that isn't ready either. So with their time frame for releasing Windows 10X it has to be on a system that uses Intel. Also nobody complains about app compatibility on MacOS. For the life of me I don't understand how everyone ***** on Microsoft so much for trying to appease to all who use their devices, which I might add, is a wide ranging group of people. We finally see Microsoft starting to innovate again and all we do is **** on them for not putting it on all the architectures, or releasing it to all devices already.
  • "Also nobody complains about app compatibility on MacOS. For the life of me I don't understand how everyone ***** on Microsoft so much for trying to appease to all who use their devices, which I might add, is a wide ranging group of people. We finally see Microsoft starting to innovate again and all we do is **** on them for not putting it on all the architectures, or releasing it to all devices already." The reason nobody (really) complains about it on macOS is (1) that the major apps are always updated to the latest OS and (2) Apple always provides a few years worth of backwards compatibility (68K > PPC, Classic > Mac OS X, PPC to Intel) to allow stragglers to get on board or its customers to alter their workflow. Apple would also provide tools to transition software from one architecture to another (the transition from PPC to Intel was fairly painless). Crucially, when Apple made these architectural transitions it barely changed the interface (only the transition from Classic to Mac OS X involved a substantial interface change but even that was mostly window dressing). The Mac interface has changed only incrementally since 1984. The same cannot be said for Windows with Microsoft subjecting us users to a never-ending array of experiments (98, ME, Vista, 8, 10S), most of which end badly. Every time Microsoft tried to change the architecture they decided to throw the baby out with the bathwater and make a whole new user "experience" to highlight the change (of course, they were starting from a lower quality and highly inconsistent interface than Mac so it's understandable they would want to improve that too). Windows 8 was decent architecturally but was awful in terms of interface. Windows 10 was a reversion to Windows 7 after the debacle of Windows 8 but the whole UWP mess left a sour taste in our mouths and the Windows 10 interface is not that much better than Windows 7 (it's essentially Windows 7 with a few bug fixes and a new skin). With Windows 10 Microsoft's biggest failure has been UWP and it destroyed both the Windows Phone and Windows 10S. Microsoft chose to exclude competitors (most famously Google Chrome) from UWP and from the Windows Store, thereby turning the technology and the store into albatrosses. By intentionally banning Chrome (and any other browser not prepared to use Microsoft's own rendering engine) they sent a clear message to developers that Windows 10 was not a welcoming place: you could only develop for Windows 10 and take advantage of the Windows Store (or whatever it's called) if you did not compete with Microsoft. Sure, this succeeded in keeping Chrome out of the Windows Store, but, it also succeeded in scaring away developers from the Windows platform. When's the last time you saw interesting, great new apps coming out for Windows? Windows is now a "mature" operating system with its app developers supporting their apps primarily in 'maintenance mode'. Developers with any sense of creativity are first and foremost on iOS, with Android as a secondary platform. They only bring applications to Windows as an afterthought. PS I dread the day that Microsoft takes away my trusty Snip tool and replaces it with the garbage UWP version that they've been trying to get me to use with their 'friendly' warnings that Snip will be replaced.
  • "With Windows 10 Microsoft's biggest failure has been UWP and it destroyed both the Windows Phone and Windows 10S." UWP is not a failure but a technical marvel in terms of concept nor did it destroy Windows Phone or Windows 10s. The failure is with the mismanagement. Mismanagement of the mobile space by killing the entire mobile division along with several other idiotic mishaps. 1) Windows Phone did not have an notification centre; that arrived a few months after the launch of Wp 8. 2) Windows phone did not have a file picker again this came a few months after Wp 8. Which made attaching documents in the email app impossible as it defaulted to the photo hub. 3) No coherrent tap to pay solution, it relied on secure sims from carrier and they only had one partner... which is Orange in France at launch. Think about that... The US aspect was even more stupid, Microsoft surrenderred too much control the carriers. The carriers intern created a consortium, issued secure sims and for tap to pay to work it required their specific app along with other restrictions. Yes, you are reading the name of the consortium correctly and it's not a late April fools joke either. https://www.pcworld.com/article/2063391/hands-on-isis-tap-and-pay-phone-... and so on. As some one who has used WM 6.x, Wp 8.x and WM 10.x for actually working I can go on forever about the potential and flaws of each iteration. I'd probably end up typing a tolkien length novel of a comment.
  • The Surface Pro X isn't Foldable.
  • Good summary.
    Not sure how I feel about resources for dynamic wall papers or removing cortana from oob. She was there for acessability. And it felt very much a part of cortana everywhere. Seems like all the ducks are in a row for late 2020 for the company with one ecception. What the hell is going on with cortana.
  • Cortana is no longer being seriously pursued by Microsoft. I thought they announced not too long ago that they are just keeping it around for experimenting with, but I can't seem to find the article.
  • Dynamic Wallpapers will be optional. It's no different than Live Tiles.
  • Let's hope the new Windows 10X design elements make their way to Windows 10. It badly needs modernising.
  • Except the Start menu, I rather keep my live tiles than static icons...
  • Dynamic wallpapers sound cool, hope they implement that feature to full Windows 10 as well!
  • Dynamic wallpapers does not sound cool to me. It reminds me of Windows Vista with all the clocks and bells making it slow.
  • Here is Microsoft shooting itself in the foot again. They are investing a lot into Windows X and they refuse to promote UWP. Instead they are letting UWP die a slow death. So, what is left for Windows X? Slower running containerized Win32 (Legacy Programs). Not sure they will get the same success when you can just get a Windows 10 computer with the same processor and better performance. Just now second screen.
  • Yes. Here they are, about to release a whole new OS with UWAs front and center, and yet the platform doesn’t evolve. It didn’t work in 2015, so they just let it be.
  • Will it still have the system registry? Geez, I hate that thing.
  • As Apple once said - "It's still Windows" lol
  • Because plist steaming pile is so much better. We get it. You like macs better. You probably think politicians have your best interest at heart as well.
  • How's that Windows 10 S-Mode doing, now?
  • haha haha what?
  • Windows 10X will hopefully be the Windows we’ve always wanted.
  • That was Windows 7. It’s been downhill since.
  • and one day, early in the morning, one idiot from MS like Joe Belfiore, over Twitter write no more then 140 characters, this is joke, everything is dead.
    No more.
  • W7 is overrated. Everything is better with W10.
  • Windows 10 is better except the look, Aero Glass FTW !
  • The Ferarri Testarossa was an amazing car as well. Very fast....in 1989. Today's Ferarri's can do far more, far faster than that old thing. Windows 7 was great in it's day. It's a new day. Time to stop living in the past.
  • Windows 8.1 was probably the best version of Windows for tablets and would have worked well on dual screen devices too. Not sure this appears to match or surpass that.
  • 8.1 forces you into legacy menus and old interfaces. It was a terrible experience outside of a couple cool gestures.
  • No it didn't force you into anything. You obviously didn't use it.
  • @Pak
    You are 100% correct. 8.1 was the absolute best for tablets. But I'm bias, I Ioved it on my big screen desktop computer too. Nothing like looking at live tiles providing quick information.
  • You can still have similar experience with Start Screen option. Though it still don't behave as it was on Windows 8.X where it auto-open or essentially it acts as your desktop and will show up when all windows/apps are minimized or closed.
  • It only just dawned on me... why is Windows 10X not the default OS for the Surface Pro X?
  • Because Windows 10X doesn't exist yet, as a commercial product. It was originally pitched as being for dual-screen devices t- it was supposed to debut on the Surface Neo. Neo was delayed though, and 10X was placed on the backburner for a while. It has now been refocused for conventional devices. I think that we can assume that 10X and WoA will converge at some point but they were both big changes and doing them both at the same time would have meant the Pro X might not even have been released yet but certainly not as soon as it was. The isolation of Win32 in 10X and the emulation in WoA are not the same thing.
  • So basically... A... Microsoft version of... ChromeOS?
  • It seems more focused on entreprise though, where as ChromeOS seems more focused on schools etc.
  • In many ways, yes. But for Microsoft and for enterprise, this should be more attractive since this may integrate well with other Microsoft enterprise solutions such as Active Directory, Group Policy, Office 365, etc. So this has a better compatibility with existing Windows environment. Though other than that, not much really to see yet. Heck it even lacks several Windows features such as Live Tiles including other things like folders and groupings, Timeline, Virtual Desktop, several File Explorer features, Windows Ink Workspace, File History, Game Bar, etc.
  • does it still feature SWIPW DOWN to close an app, thats one gesture that i really love abd miss on tablet chromebooks.
  • I suspect gestures are either similar to W10 (but improved upon) or similar to Surface Duo os.
  • Do MS never give up or they never learn a lesson from previous failure ?
  • Are they never to try anything new?
  • If they give up, then they never improve. So at least they are trying. The important thing is they learn their lesson.
  • Everyone's a critic 🙄
  • No email and calendar apps by default because users are expected to use Outlook Web? So, the logic is to present users with an intuitive new interface and then force them to use a web browser to read emails and calendars? Newsflash: Browser-based software sucks in every way.
  • The apps are available in the Store so who cares. If anything, this is only good to give people less bloat on their devices if they use other email programs.
  • With the lack of Win32 support, will you be able to do a Zoom meeting since Zoom does install a small plugin? Will Zoom work with Windows Virtual Desktop (or the Windows 10X equivalent)?
  • Isn't Zoom has a web client though? So it should work even on the browsers, though not sure what features may be missing. Windows 10X seems like it will get same exact Microsoft Edge we use for desktop, but the lack of Win32 support and new Edge is Chromium based which is a Win32 app, not sure how this will pans out.
  • MS should improve their UWP APPS First !!!
    and then... they could offer something like this.
  • I will have to try this OS on a spare computer.
  • Like Windows on ARM it'll only be available to PC OEMs.
  • will be available in torrent soon.
  • i love how people are commenting "ThEY DoNT HAv WIn32 aT laUNcH" when they said that there will be Win32 support by the time it gets released to consumers. Read the article before making comments!
  • It's a strange point anyway. It's clearly a light and mobile first platform. You've already got Windows 10 laptops for Win32 apps.
  • Those are the same people that said "LaPtOpS aRe AlReAdY fOlDaBlEs" 🤣 We need innovation, besides change is a constant. Whether good or bad, it's gonna happen, so might as well be ready for it,
  • I've never got why Windows Home as all the same legacy components as Windows Pro. Consumers don't need it. It would make Windows so much better too.
  • Now it'll be on clamshell laptops it'll be a hard sell. ChromeOS is already a proven platform and that had both Web apps and Android apps. Windows 10X will only have Web apps and the few UWP apps people actually use. Chrome looks the much stronger platform.
  • Once Win32 support comes, and Office support with it, I could see it being better that Chrome. I tried to use a Chromebook for a while, but I just can't go without having the full desktop version of the Office suite.
  • Education and Enterprise tells you everything you need to know. Tech comments are full of negativity towards Chromebooks but the reality is in education and enterprise they've been a hit for years. IT departments not wanting the heavy overheard that comes with Windows. Light, mobile, cloud computing offering Gmail, Google Workspace etc... ChromeOS can connect to Remote Desktop or Citrix without issue. For sure the same will be the case here. It's not for you and I, the consumer. Not yet. We're a harder sell.
  • Microsoft is leading when it comes to Enterprise and Education market, and with Win32 support coming Chrome OS will disappear from the market. Tho I'm looking forward to receive Fuchsia OS.
  • The UI is a blatant ChromeOS ripoff. No doubt to reduce the learning curve though.
  • This is the worst Windows ever. Where are the innovations that you had back in 2012? Why did you remove the useful Start screen with live tiles. Why try to copy other OSes instead of preserving your uniqueness? Why don't you support 16 million desktop apps?
  • Win32 support will come later as the article said. It was there even on the Windows 10X Emulator. But due to complexity and they will release Win10X on ARM as well, where these Win32 containers seems challenging to implement stacking multiple virtualizations on top of each other, thus has been delayed. Though yeah other than that, the lack of Live Tiles for example is disappointing. Considering even Apple considers it and now made widgets as part of their homescreen. MacOS already have widget system and might get similar treatment, but iPadOS will get that new homescreen UX first. Windows 10X looks lean, but also seems too lean with features as well. File Explorer is remain to be seen what is the final shipping features, but at the moment its too barebones even from the level of Gnome3 File Manager.
  • @aXross hopefully we can test these new 10X images soon. Over the christmas holidays I'm going to see if the issue of nested VMs has sorted for AMD Ryzen CPUs.
  • Haven't even tried the new OS and already calling it a failure? Take a chill pill man. This fanatical fanboyism over products is what stifles the products themselves. You don't give it a chance and in doing so doom the product. If you where a true fan you would give it a go, and try it out. Change in technology breeds innovation. This like when the fanboys started saying laptops are "already foldables" like burh..NO!. If you don't like it, don't buy the product, and switch to another platform or keep on using the old stuff. You're more than welcome to do that. In the end everything changes good or bad, we can either adapt or get left in the dust.
  • im glad that live tile monstrosity will finally go away. its not just useless to grab a little bit information in the quickly changing cards in a small box, i cannot find application, because i cannot see its logo
  • @NevzatAydin it's only a monstrosity because you are not using it effectively lol. If you use the small tile you can see the apps icons and you can expand that to see more information (medium, wide, large tiles). Plus, the apps name is on the tile itself.... 🤦‍♂️
  • The reason is very simple: ChromeOS is taking marketshare.
    Windows10X would have given it direct competition.
  • So Windows 10X on ARM, a bit of a mouthful but I'm down with it. I can only imagine how it'll be with foldables and the like. Maybe someone can try putting 10X on a Surface Duo? 🤔 Wouldn't that be something.
  • As the article states. This is an enterprise-focused OS. Thus the IT department needs a secure device to deploy and service to a group of people that can not, will not and should not deal with computer problems, updates, or installations. I don't know how many unit sales would be in a typical year. Once they get this OS up and running at a level to secure the ecosystem, then more options will be released to the market. For now, Windows 10 will be used by most people for the next 10 years. Do I buy a new computer in 2 or 3 years that has Windows 10X? Maybe. I guess I would buy a new Surface Pro in 2 to 3 years. But probably a new Go in 1 to 2 years. A new phone? 6 to 12 months--my $200 moto phone that replaced my crushed OnePlus is a bit weak for what I require.
  • now that Chrome Os is going to be officially supported for existing older devices including those which run Windows, is Microsoft missing a trick here in providing an upgrade path for existing machines too?
  • I hope they do provide an upgrade path as they can easily create a tool like the media creation tool that allows users to create a bootable usb. Plus given external storage and usb storage has come down drastically in price, it's doable especially for the devices with very low EMMC storage. The upgrade wizard would back up the data to the usb or external storage drive and sure, it will take time but it is still doable never the less. 10X makes a alot of sense on low end devices with limited storage which already have gimped CPUs anyway due to OEMs cutting corners were they can but still charging the same i.e. in retail outlets a Laptop with a pentium CPU + 32 gig EMMC costs the same as an full fledge core i processor and 1tb 2.5" hdd a few years ago.
  • No Tiles, no deal.
  • Amen to that. They're so in love with Android/iOS it sucks.
  • Centered start menu and taskbar.
    10 minutes.
  • Cool for dynamic wallpapers.
  • If Windows 10X is as secure as MSFT claims, then I can see government buying a ton of these machines to avoid hacking from enemy governments. But I don't know where hacks originate and how they impact a government network of computers.
  • There's nothing to know, it's dead. Why has this article made it's way to the top?
  • "this article remains as a look-back at some of the new experiences and changes Microsoft had pioneered with Windows 10X."
    Though I do agree with you that necro-ing this post is confusing.
    I'm still sad that they shelved it. My unit could easily move to ChromeOS and drastically reduce the amount of IT overhead required to manage devices, but the folks at the top are still towing the Microsoft cart and refuse to let us set up Google Admin Console. (without which, ChromeOS devices aren't nearly as useful in the workplace). So I was really hoping to have something comparable from Microsoft this year.
  • Slow news day?
  • The first sentence is a false statement.
    "Microsoft has cancelled Windows 10X".
    There's a clear difference between "cancelled" and "postponed". Also, once the best visual features from 10X have been ported over to 10, and gained widespread acceptance, they can easily release 10X without much noticeable difference in UI for the consumers. The under-the-hood lightweight Core OS is a necessity and that's why 10X will most likely live on.
    Porting the UI from 10X to 10 is simply not enough.