Microsoft VP confirms move to replace short-lived Windows 10 S with 'S Mode' in 2019

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Microsoft will be moving away from offering Windows 10 S as a separate operating system release in favor of a built-in 'S Mode,' an executive has advised, confirming an earlier rumor it was looking to replace the stripped-down Windows version in favor of an option in full Windows 10 installations.




Writing in response to a Twitter query spotted by The Verge, Microsoft Vice President Joe Belfiore confirmed the shift in strategy, advising "Next year [Windows 10 S] will be a 'mode' of existing versions, not a distinct version." Belfiore also states the S mode is being provided as "an option for schools or businesses that want the 'low-hassle,' guaranteed performance version."

Reports of the plan to eliminate the Windows variant in favor of the mode surfaced in February, with rumors stating it would be included in versions of Windows 10 at some point in the future. The Belfiore post doesn't say when Windows 10 S will stop being offered, but does at least advise of when to expect S mode's formal arrival.

Windows 10 S is a stripped-down version of Windows that will only run Windows Store apps, a version of Windows initially introduced alongside the Surface Laptop in 2017. The restrictions of this Windows edition aims to reduce security risks by keeping installed apps to a pre-screened selection from the store, which also helps simplify device management for educational and enterprise customers.

We use Win10S as an option for schools or businesses that want the 'low-hassle'/ guaranteed performance version. Next year 10S will be a "mode" of existing versions, not a distinct version. SO I think it's totally fine/good that it's not mentioned.

-- Joe Belfiore (@joebelfiore)


Users are still able to upgrade from the S release to full versions, removing the restrictions and giving users the ability to install and run software from alternative sources. According to Microsoft, 60 percent of its users on third-party tablets stick with it instead of switching to the full version, with 60 percent of switchers doing so within 24 hours of owning the device.

It is rumored that the S Mode will be available for almost all versions of Windows 10, excluding releases like Core+, but the cost of switching from the S Mode to unrestricted Windows 10 will vary depending on the Windows version used. Windows 10 Home S users could end up being able to remove S Mode for free, while Windows 10 Pro S is touted to have an unlocking fee of $49.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    “S Mode”

    sounds like something Samsung cooked up for their duplicate of an existing Android feature.
    racerhomie3StrangeDayswatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 24
    robin huberrobin huber Posts: 3,252member
    Windows: Microsoft’s “Ride or Die”?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 24
    racerhomie3racerhomie3 Posts: 1,060member
    What a mess.
    What are these people serving , alphabet soup?
    edited March 2018 watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 24
    Windows S is an attempt to reduce the security footprint of Windows.  It does this through forcing installs to go though the App Store, similar to iOS.  Unfortunately it’s only suitable for some home users, and the App Store is crap.


    jbdragonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 24
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,118member
    I saw this coming as soon as S was announced. So fucking predictable and short-sighted. Microsoft, never change. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 24
    BluntBlunt Posts: 223member
    These guys have no vision.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 24
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 439member
    This represents a fundamental difference between Apple and its competitors. It’s in plain view, but many of the primary themes of peanut-gallery criticism of Apple suggest a lot of people don’t see it.

    Micrsoft’s business model with Windows is to create a single software product that is all things to all people. I have no doubt that there are utilitarian reasons under the hood for Windows to have an ‘s mode’ version built into the full installation, rather than having a separate version of the OS. Clearly the now-sunsetted ‘10 S’ was an attempt to venture into something more akin to Apple’s OS structure, but that probably became too unwieldy for them to consistently manage alongside the standard version of Windows. One could imagine that developing parallel updates to Windows and Windows 10S involved a lot of duplicative work, while actually multiplying the probable number of functional variables. That would then create higher probabilities for unanticipated bugs, even though the objective of 10S was to create a more stable experience for their Surface products. So for Microsoft, it’s probably easier to create consistency across platforms by writing one version of Windows and simply switching off some of it to run on Surface machines. 

    Meanwhile, Apple continues not to try to be all things to all people. MacOS runs on a very small number of machines, all of them made by Apple. The same goes for iOS, which is separately designed to run on touchscreen devices, all of them made by Apple. That creates orders of magnitude fewer variables that must be anticipated in the operating systems, which generally yields greater stability and fewer crashes and bugs. MacOS and iOS function differently, because the machines they run on function differently. While there are cross-platform consistencies, there are also significant differences in the user interfaces that are best designed separately.

    This seems to frustrate the people who continually pipe up with lamentations that Apple doesn’t write a single, cross-platform OS, or create touchscreen MacBooks, or run MacOS on iPads, or make it easy to swap out or add on third party components to Macs and MacBooks, or simply open up MacOS to other manufacturers. All those complaints are based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Apple’s core model that has existed from the beginning of the company. By creating the OS and the hardware exclusively in-house, Apple will never be all things to all people, but they will be very good at creating devices that some people will want to buy and enjoy with great consistency. 
    pscooter63jony0d_2watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 24
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 4,527member
    Microsoft, I have an ideal, how about one version which just works for everyone.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 24
    dachardachar Posts: 330member
    Yet another example to an ever growing list of reasons why l am so happy l moved from Windows to Apple computers, iPhones and iPads. You.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 24
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 31,005member
    I can think of at least one four-letter word starting with the letter “S” which might apply here.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 24
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 1,715member
    Windows S is an attempt to reduce the security footprint of Windows.  It does this through forcing installs to go though the App Store, similar to iOS.  Unfortunately it’s only suitable for some home users, and the App Store is crap.


    It’s something they should have done 10 years ago.   I hate all the tiles on windows.  Too Annoying .
  • Reply 12 of 24
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,310member
    It’s unclear from this story what an S mode is. So not following this. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 24
    k2kwk2kw Posts: 1,715member

    AppleZulu said:
    This represents a fundamental difference between Apple and its competitors. It’s in plain view, but many of the primary themes of peanut-gallery criticism of Apple suggest a lot of people don’t see it.

    Micrsoft’s business model with Windows is to create a single software product that is all things to all people. I have no doubt that there are utilitarian reasons under the hood for Windows to have an ‘s mode’ version built into the full installation, rather than having a separate version of the OS. Clearly the now-sunsetted ‘10 S’ was an attempt to venture into something more akin to Apple’s OS structure, but that probably became too unwieldy for them to consistently manage alongside the standard version of Windows. One could imagine that developing parallel updates to Windows and Windows 10S involved a lot of duplicative work, while actually multiplying the probable number of functional variables. That would then create higher probabilities for unanticipated bugs, even though the objective of 10S was to create a more stable experience for their Surface products. So for Microsoft, it’s probably easier to create consistency across platforms by writing one version of Windows and simply switching off some of it to run on Surface machines. 

    Meanwhile, Apple continues not to try to be all things to all people. MacOS runs on a very small number of machines, all of them made by Apple. The same goes for iOS, which is separately designed to run on touchscreen devices, all of them made by Apple. That creates orders of magnitude fewer variables that must be anticipated in the operating systems, which generally yields greater stability and fewer crashes and bugs. MacOS and iOS function differently, because the machines they run on function differently. While there are cross-platform consistencies, there are also significant differences in the user interfaces that are best designed separately.

    This seems to frustrate the people who continually pipe up with lamentations that Apple doesn’t write a single, cross-platform OS, or create touchscreen MacBooks, or run MacOS on iPads, or make it easy to swap out or add on third party components to Macs and MacBooks, or simply open up MacOS to other manufacturers. All those complaints are based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Apple’s core model that has existed from the beginning of the company. By creating the OS and the hardware exclusively in-house, Apple will never be all things to all people, but they will be very good at creating devices that some people will want to buy and enjoy with great consistency. 
    My understanding is that Apple has said it will take at least 10 years to get to a single OS for iPads and computers.

    I think they could do it in less time in steps.   First step is adding multi user(family) support to iOS for iPad, appleTV , and HomePod.

    Second step is creating iOS based laptop with mouse support to replace MacBookAir.   This should run on an A12X chip so that Apple could begin dumping Intel.

  • Reply 14 of 24
    mike1mike1 Posts: 1,870member
    It’s unclear from this story what an S mode is. So not following this. 
    I believe it is designed primarily for institutional and enterprise use where the owners (schools/companies) can better manage security and control which apps are on the machine and from where they're downloaded/installed.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 24
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,544member
    I use Windows on my Macs every day (as virtual machines) and I cringe every time I have to use it.  It's crap solutions like this "S" version is why Microsoft is the poster-child for everything that's wrong with PC's nowadays.  

    They just don't get it.
    dewmewatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 24
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 439member
    k2kw said:

    AppleZulu said:
    This represents a fundamental difference between Apple and its competitors. It’s in plain view, but many of the primary themes of peanut-gallery criticism of Apple suggest a lot of people don’t see it.

    Micrsoft’s business model with Windows is to create a single software product that is all things to all people. I have no doubt that there are utilitarian reasons under the hood for Windows to have an ‘s mode’ version built into the full installation, rather than having a separate version of the OS. Clearly the now-sunsetted ‘10 S’ was an attempt to venture into something more akin to Apple’s OS structure, but that probably became too unwieldy for them to consistently manage alongside the standard version of Windows. One could imagine that developing parallel updates to Windows and Windows 10S involved a lot of duplicative work, while actually multiplying the probable number of functional variables. That would then create higher probabilities for unanticipated bugs, even though the objective of 10S was to create a more stable experience for their Surface products. So for Microsoft, it’s probably easier to create consistency across platforms by writing one version of Windows and simply switching off some of it to run on Surface machines. 

    Meanwhile, Apple continues not to try to be all things to all people. MacOS runs on a very small number of machines, all of them made by Apple. The same goes for iOS, which is separately designed to run on touchscreen devices, all of them made by Apple. That creates orders of magnitude fewer variables that must be anticipated in the operating systems, which generally yields greater stability and fewer crashes and bugs. MacOS and iOS function differently, because the machines they run on function differently. While there are cross-platform consistencies, there are also significant differences in the user interfaces that are best designed separately.

    This seems to frustrate the people who continually pipe up with lamentations that Apple doesn’t write a single, cross-platform OS, or create touchscreen MacBooks, or run MacOS on iPads, or make it easy to swap out or add on third party components to Macs and MacBooks, or simply open up MacOS to other manufacturers. All those complaints are based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Apple’s core model that has existed from the beginning of the company. By creating the OS and the hardware exclusively in-house, Apple will never be all things to all people, but they will be very good at creating devices that some people will want to buy and enjoy with great consistency. 
    My understanding is that Apple has said it will take at least 10 years to get to a single OS for iPads and computers.

    I think they could do it in less time in steps.   First step is adding multi user(family) support to iOS for iPad, appleTV , and HomePod.

    Second step is creating iOS based laptop with mouse support to replace MacBookAir.   This should run on an A12X chip so that Apple could begin dumping Intel.

    My understanding is that they’ve looked at it, and it’s fairly unlikely that the two will be combined anytime soon. The user interfaces are fundamentally different. Using a mouse or trackpad to interface with iOS would be unintuitive and unsatisfying, and that’s even more the case going in the other direction by trying to make a touchscreen work for the MacOS interface. This is literally what I was trying to get at in my previous post. It is central to Apple’s ethos to not try to jam different things together just to satisfy some irrational need to be all things for everyone. 

    Things can and do change over time, but unless there’s a specific functional and business case identified for merging those things, there’s really no reason to do it. Windows has continually tried to do this sort of thing, and it’s not proven to be all that great. While I’m sure some people like them, Surface devices have not become bestselling category killers. Why on earth would Apple try that? I can think of a lot of functional and business reasons not to merge apple operating systems and devices, but very few reasons to do so, other than to fulfill poorly conceived fantasy crossover narratives. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 24
    dewmedewme Posts: 2,022member
    Microsoft had its time in the sun. That time has long passed. How they can continue to charge money for their operating system defies logic and reason. Unless someone is paying me to use Windows or if I have no other choice to run a particular application, I have no interest in Windows at all. It's about as exciting as a Pontiac Aztek or Honda Element. Once you've been using a Mac for a while and then go back to Windows you immediately see the ridiculous amount of inane claptrap that Microsoft inflicts upon its poor customers. For the average home user who cannot make the transition to a Mac for one reason or another and who doesn't have a hard dependency on a Windows app, free Linux desktop distributions like Ubuntu and Manjaro are much more compelling. It's sad that so many folks who just need a stable platform for web browsing, email, word processing, social media, etc., get suckered into paying for Windows and Windows apps when the free Linux equivalents will fully satisfy the needs of at least 95% of these users. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 24
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,828member
    maestro64 said:
    Microsoft, I have an ideal, how about one version which just works for everyone.
    Yes, I still to this day don't understand why Microsoft thinks that need to have 50 different versions of Windows. Why not just make a client version and a server version? Then you can focus on one thing and do it really well instead of trying to nickel and dime customers. Plus, it would seem like it would make it far easier to manage a single OS in the end rather than a few. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 24
    danvmdanvm Posts: 740member
    AppleZulu said:
    k2kw said:

    AppleZulu said:
    This represents a fundamental difference between Apple and its competitors. It’s in plain view, but many of the primary themes of peanut-gallery criticism of Apple suggest a lot of people don’t see it.

    Micrsoft’s business model with Windows is to create a single software product that is all things to all people. I have no doubt that there are utilitarian reasons under the hood for Windows to have an ‘s mode’ version built into the full installation, rather than having a separate version of the OS. Clearly the now-sunsetted ‘10 S’ was an attempt to venture into something more akin to Apple’s OS structure, but that probably became too unwieldy for them to consistently manage alongside the standard version of Windows. One could imagine that developing parallel updates to Windows and Windows 10S involved a lot of duplicative work, while actually multiplying the probable number of functional variables. That would then create higher probabilities for unanticipated bugs, even though the objective of 10S was to create a more stable experience for their Surface products. So for Microsoft, it’s probably easier to create consistency across platforms by writing one version of Windows and simply switching off some of it to run on Surface machines. 

    Meanwhile, Apple continues not to try to be all things to all people. MacOS runs on a very small number of machines, all of them made by Apple. The same goes for iOS, which is separately designed to run on touchscreen devices, all of them made by Apple. That creates orders of magnitude fewer variables that must be anticipated in the operating systems, which generally yields greater stability and fewer crashes and bugs. MacOS and iOS function differently, because the machines they run on function differently. While there are cross-platform consistencies, there are also significant differences in the user interfaces that are best designed separately.

    This seems to frustrate the people who continually pipe up with lamentations that Apple doesn’t write a single, cross-platform OS, or create touchscreen MacBooks, or run MacOS on iPads, or make it easy to swap out or add on third party components to Macs and MacBooks, or simply open up MacOS to other manufacturers. All those complaints are based on a fundamental misunderstanding of Apple’s core model that has existed from the beginning of the company. By creating the OS and the hardware exclusively in-house, Apple will never be all things to all people, but they will be very good at creating devices that some people will want to buy and enjoy with great consistency. 
    My understanding is that Apple has said it will take at least 10 years to get to a single OS for iPads and computers.

    I think they could do it in less time in steps.   First step is adding multi user(family) support to iOS for iPad, appleTV , and HomePod.

    Second step is creating iOS based laptop with mouse support to replace MacBookAir.   This should run on an A12X chip so that Apple could begin dumping Intel.

    My understanding is that they’ve looked at it, and it’s fairly unlikely that the two will be combined anytime soon. The user interfaces are fundamentally different. Using a mouse or trackpad to interface with iOS would be unintuitive and unsatisfying, and that’s even more the case going in the other direction by trying to make a touchscreen work for the MacOS interface. This is literally what I was trying to get at in my previous post. It is central to Apple’s ethos to not try to jam different things together just to satisfy some irrational need to be all things for everyone. 


    It's true that Apple don't try to merge iOS and macOS, but that doesn't means it's for the better.  As an example, they pushed the iPad Pro with Smart Keyboard as a desktop replacement, even though is not the best thing from an ergonomic POV.  SJ was very clear that the experience of touchscreen notebooks wasn't the best, and that's the same experience an iPad + keyboard offers.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/steve-jobs-touch-screen-mac-2010-10

    Compare that to a Surface Pro, where you are working in tablet mode, and when you need it, you switch the UI to desktop mode with a keyboard that includes a trackpad.  IMO, that makes more sense than forcing you to use a touch UI as iOS with a keyboard without trackpad as a desktop replacement.
    Things can and do change over time, but unless there’s a specific functional and business case identified for merging those things, there’s really no reason to do it. Windows has continually tried to do this sort of thing, and it’s not proven to be all that great. While I’m sure some people like them, Surface devices have not become bestselling category killers. Why on earth would Apple try that? I can think of a lot of functional and business reasons not to merge apple operating systems and devices, but very few reasons to do so, other than to fulfill poorly conceived fantasy crossover narratives.

    Last year, Surface Pro consumer satisfaction was a bit higher than iPad.

    http://appleinsider.com/articles/17/04/07/jd-power-2017-tablet-buyers-report-outstanding-satisfaction-ready-to-spend-money-on-premium-brands

    Maybe this is proof that Surface devices turn out to be great devices.  If MS made it possible, don't you think that Apple can do something similar or better than an iPad w/ keyboard or even better than the Surface Pro?


  • Reply 20 of 24
    danvmdanvm Posts: 740member
    macxpress said:
    maestro64 said:
    Microsoft, I have an ideal, how about one version which just works for everyone.
    Yes, I still to this day don't understand why Microsoft thinks that need to have 50 different versions of Windows. Why not just make a client version and a server version? Then you can focus on one thing and do it really well instead of trying to nickel and dime customers.
    Considering MS is a software company, maybe it makes sense for them to price Windows based in the customer.  Most of them will only see two versions, Home and Pro.  IMO, that's not complicated at all.  Same as Enterprise and Education, which are included with the agreement for business and academic institutions.

    Plus, it would seem like it would make it far easier to manage a single OS in the end rather than a few.

    Windows 10 is a single OS, even though there are different SKU. 

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