Microsoft said Tuesday that it has decided to discontinue Windows 10X, its slimmed-down alternative to Windows 10, and will take some of the Windows 10X technology and incorporate it into Windows 10 as a whole. The announcement was made on the same day that the latest major Windows 10 upgrade released.
Earlier this month, reports circulated that Microsoft had postponed Windows 10X, potentially as a consequence of the pandemic and competitive pressures. On Tuesday, Microsoft positioned the cancellation of Windows 10X as the result of customer feedback.
“Following a year-long exploration and engaging in conversations with customers, we realized that the technology of Windows 10X could be useful in more ways and serve more customers than we originally imagined,” John Cable, Microsoft’s vice president of program management, Windows servicing and delivery, wrote in a blog post. “We concluded that the 10X technology shouldn’t just be confined to a subset of customers.
“Instead of bringing a product called Windows 10X to market in 2021 like we originally intended, we are leveraging learnings from our journey thus far and accelerating the integration of key foundational 10X technology into other parts of Windows and products at the company,” Cable added.
Cable said that some of the Windows 10X technology had already been migrated to Windows 10, specifically the Windows Insider beta builds. These include a new app container technology being integrated into Microsoft Defender Application Guard, an enhanced Voice Typing experience, and a new, modernized touch keyboard.
“Our teams continue to invest in areas where the 10X technology will help meet our customer needs as well as evaluate technology experiences both in software and hardware that will be useful to our customers in the future,” Cable added.
Now, the thinking is that some of these Windows 10X elements will be added to “Sun Valley,” a larger Windows 10 21H2 refresh expected to debut this fall. It’s a good repurposing of Microsoft’s technology, though still a disappointment who were hoping from something different from Microsoft.
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As PCWorld's senior editor, Mark focuses on Microsoft news and chip technology, among other beats. He has formerly written for PCMag, BYTE, Slashdot, eWEEK, and ReadWrite.
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