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Microsoft announces Windows 11 SE, Surface Laptop SE is the first laptop to run it

Windows 11 SE is Microsoft's latest effort to beat Chromebooks and ChromeOS
By Sanuj Bhatia November 10, 2021, 2:40 am
Windows 11 Wallpaper

Microsoft, yesterday, announced Windows 11 SE — a special version of Windows 11 designed for education. The new OS is destined for running on low-end hardware and is built to take on ChromeOS and Chromebooks. Microsoft says that Windows 11 SE (Student Edition?) will be available on low-cost laptops built for K-8 classrooms.

With Windows 10, Microsoft announced Windows 10 S. It's a stripped-down version of Windows 10 that allowed downloading apps only via the Microsoft Store and had some other limitations as well. However, the software didn't take off as much as Microsoft would've wanted. And, on the other hand, Chromebooks continue to flourish in the education department. The company is now making another effort to take on low-cost devices with Windows 11 SE.


Unlike Windows 10 S, Windows 11 SE allows users to install third-party apps like Zoom and Chrome. Paige Johnson, head of Microsoft’s education marketing, on Windows 11 SE supporting third-party apps said, “Windows 11 SE also supports third-party apps, including Zoom and Chrome because we want to give schools the choice to use what works best for them." He says that IT admins will remain in charge of what apps can be installed on the Windows 11 SE devices of a school, and the devices can also be silently updated outside of class time.

windows 11 se simplified snap layouts Source: Microsoft

Moreover, Windows 11 SE won't come with Microsoft Store pre-installed. Instead, the IT department of a school will a list of apps that will come pre-installed on the devices. The list only includes Chrome and Zoom for now, but Microsoft is yet to share a final list of approved apps.

Windows 11 SE also lacks one of the most interesting features of Windows 11 features — Snap Layouts. Instead, there's only a single mode that lets you place apps side by side. Microsoft has also apps like Teams, Office, OneNote, Minecraft for Education, and Flipgrid for the new Windows version. And yes, there’s also a new wallpaper.

microsoft surface se that runs on Windows 11 se Source: Microsoft

Microsoft's own Surface SE is the first commercially available device that'll run on Windows 11 SE. It is priced at $249 in the United States and comes with 4GB RAM and 64GB of eMMC storage. It's an Intel Celeron chip inside and an 11.6-inch (1366 x 768) display. There's a 1MP 720p camera in the front for Teams. On the I/O front, Microsoft Surface SE has a single USB-A port, one USB-C port, one DC connector, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. There's also an 8GB RAM/128GB variant which will be available for $329.

Microsoft says that a full range of Windows 11 SE laptops will also be available from companies like Acer, Asus, Dell, Dynabook, Fujitsu, HP, JK-IP, Lenovo, and Positivo.

Via: The Verge


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