A version of Windows 10X has been leaked close to the version Microsoft plans to release later this year. With the lightweight operating system, Microsoft wants to bring low-cost hardware to the market to compete with Google’s Chromebooks.
The Verge has shared several details about the new operating system. Like ChromeOS, it is fairly limited in functionality to emphasise the internet browser and cloud storage.
Windows 10X it will no longer allow its users to determine the size of a window. Users have the choice to maximise an application or let it fill or half the screen. As a consequence, the maximise button in the top right corner of an application has disappeared.
The taskbar has also received a serious makeover. The start button and pinned applications have been moved to the middle of the bar. The start menu has been completely changed, with a list of frequently used or pinned files and applications and a search bar at the top. The search bar can search both the computer and the internet.
Windows Explorer has also been overhauled. The interface has been greatly simplified and is mainly designed to explore files within OneDrive. Local files and USB sticks can also be explored.
Windows 10X will clearly be a lot simpler than the full version of Windows 10. When it comes releases, traditional applications will not run on it; users will have to make do with applications from the Windows Store and web apps. However, rumours indicate that Microsoft is working on getting desktop applications to run in virtual machines and having Android apps running on Windows 10X as well.
It is not yet known when Windows 10X will be launched, but it probably won’t be long. Users will not be able to install it on their own computers; instead, the operating system will come pre-installed on new laptops and other devices. No announcements have yet been made as to which companies will be offering these devices.