As predicted, Microsoft unveiled a number of next-gen Surface devices which included the dual-screen device previously codenamed Centaurus, now officially called Surface Neo and Surface Duo. However, what’s even more interesting than the foldable multifaceted and powerful device, is the operating system that will power the same.
Microsoft Windows 10X, which was earlier rumored to be called Windows Lite or Windows Core OS (WCOS) is a sub-variant of the full-fledged Windows 10 OS, which has been specifically customized and optimized to run on dual-screen foldable devices. While launching the latest Surface portfolio of hardware, Microsoft briefly explained why it chose to develop Windows 10X, and what the tweaked and optimized version of Windows 10 OS is capable of doing or achieving.
Windows 10X Strictly for Dual-Screen, Foldable Devices That Need Better Battery Backup Without Compromising Performance:
The current generation of the Windows 10 operating system offers a complete desktop experience. Hence Microsoft has been adding several features and functionalities. However, that means the Windows 10 installation goes larger with every update. Moreover, there is intrinsic and native support to run multiple different applications, apps, and platforms. This invariably makes Windows 10 a highly complex operating system with many interdependencies.
Microsoft Windows 10X is clearly an attempt to develop a lightweight, yet versatile, the operating system that can offer a cohesive and seamless experience on a dual-screen, foldable and portable computing device that is considerably smaller and lighter than a traditional laptop or two-in-one device. Incidentally, the traditional Windows 10 installation can easily accommodate two displays, but the way it handles multiple displays is rather restricted to a desktop with a dual monitor setup.
This is Surface Neo, and this is my first look at this new dual-screen device. It runs Windows 10X with some new software tweaks, an intriguing WonderBar feature, and a really cool magnetic keyboard. All the details and video right here: https://t.co/I9TUzvGhYb pic.twitter.com/knDvcEOMY7
— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) October 2, 2019
Windows 10X, on the other hand, will power a device that houses two displays within a single enclosure. The apps and other platforms will have to dynamically readjust their layout, User Interface (UI), and even the basic functionalities, depending on the way the screens are being operated. A patent filing had indicated how Microsoft plans to manipulate the operating systems and the applications on a sleek dual-screen and foldable device.
Windows 10X is fundamentally based on Windows 10 OS, and hence it brings with it the same UI, and the user experience while adding features optimized for dual-screen. Moreover, it is apparently a ‘modular’ OS. In other words, Microsoft has hand-picked particular or specific features from Windows 10 to be incorporated in Windows 10X.
holy fuck Microsoft is resurrecting the never released but highly anticipated courier!!!!
Surface Neo is coming holiday 2020 and I am fucking stoked pic.twitter.com/IECvuAFT38
— Sam Sheffer (@samsheffer) October 2, 2019
The most ideal example of the modular functionality is the inclusion of a virtual container that will allow users to run Win32 or 32-bit applications. Moreover, Microsoft may have gutted out several core libraries that would allow applications to run natively. In other words, computers or laptops running Windows 10X could be expected to be always connected to the internet and run cloud-based applications, including productivity suites like Microsoft 365. Incidentally, several applications that once required a dedicated installation on a Windows OS machine, now run directly from the internet.
Microsoft Windows 10X Not Just for Surface Neo, Confirms Company:
Windows 10X will reportedly offer multiple sensor support and posture awareness. In other words, buyers can expect to operate the device using pen, voice, touch, even gaze. Moreover, as reported earlier, all Windows 10X devices will be Intel-based. Additionally, existing Windows 10 OS users, no matter the version, will be able to install the operating system on their own machines. In other words, existing Windows OS users won’t have the opportunity to bring an existing device over to X mode, noted Microsoft,
“Windows 10X is designed for new dual-screen PCs and not as an OS upgrade if you already own a PC. We are also continuously investing in improving the Windows 10 experience on desktops and laptops, while Windows 10X will enable a new class of PCs that will complement and co-exist with today’s Windows 10 PCs.”
The Microsoft Surface Neo is the ideal example of a Surface-branded dual-screen foldable device that needs an optimized version of Windows 10. However, with Windows 10X, Microsoft is thinking beyond the latest line of Surface-branded portable computing devices. In fact, Windows 10X, which is reportedly based on Windows Core OS, is expected to power a number of new dual-screen, foldable computers or laptops.
Microsoft expects other manufacturers like Dell, HP, and others to develop their own line of powerful dual-screen portable computing devices. Since an operating system supporting a dual-screen device already exists, these manufacturers won’t have to invest time and resources to tweak an OS for their custom needs.
— CNET (@CNET) October 2, 2019
Windows 10X will be available on dual-screen devices starting in the fall of 2020. It is quite likely that along with Microsoft Surface Neo, quite a few other third-party manufacturers may also launch their own devices running Windows 10X OS.