Microsoft announces its planned list of Windows 10 editions
Microsoft is up to a great deal of changes when it comes to the future of Windows 10. We’ve already heard that the company no longer wants to change the name, as it’ll now focus on making Windows 10 a service that updates constantly over the next few years. One of our biggest questions was how many versions of Windows 10 would be announced during the final launch this summer, but it seems we get final details today.
Microsoft has just announced that Windows 10 will launch in six different versions, and even though most of the operating system elements will be shared, each one will have its fair share of differences. The amount of features that you’re getting highly depends on which version you’ll either upgrade to, or acquire, though obviously it’s a very different case for Windows 10 Mobile, which is also on the list. The statement segregates them with very detailed explanations:
Windows 10 Home: The consumer-focused desktop edition. This will include the core Windows 10 features, such as the Edge browser, Continuum tablet-mode for touch-capable devices; Cortana integration; free Photos, Maps, Mail, Calendar; Music and Video apps; and Windows Hello face-recognition/iris/fingerprint log-in for devices that support those technologies. On devices with screen sizes of 10.1 inches or less, users also will get Universal Office apps for free, once these become available.
Windows 10 Mobile: This is the SKU for Windows Phones and small Intel- and ARM-based tablets. This SKU will include the core Windows 10 features; free Universal Office apps once they are available; and support for Continuum for Phone, allowing customers to use phones as PCs connected to larger screens (but only on new devices supporting certain screen resolutions).
Windows 10 Mobile Enterprise: This is a version of Windows 10 Mobile for volume licensing customers only. According to the blog post, this SKU incorporates the latest security and feature updates to Windows 10 once they are available. There’s no word if users will be able to delay these updates in order to test/stagger their delivery, which is offered under Windows Update for Business.
Windows 10 Pro: A desktop version of Windows 10 for mobile workers, tech enthusiasts and other power users. This version is one of at least two — the other being Windows 10 Enterprise — that will allow users to opt for Windows Update for Business. Windows Update for Business will allow admins to opt to not receive all feature and security updates from Microsoft immediately after they are available.
Windows 10 Enterprise: This is the Enterprise version of Windows 10 that is available to volume-licensing customers. This version is not part of Microsoft’s first-year-free upgrade offer, but those with volume-licensing Software Assurance customers will be able to move to this version as part of their licensing terms. The Enterprise version customers get access to the Long Term Servicing Branch of Windows 10 — which allows them to opt to receive security fixes only and no new features as Microsoft rolls them out.
Windows 10 Education: This is the version for staff, administrators, students and teachers, and will be available through academic Volume Licensing. Microsoft officials say there will be paths for schools and students to upgrade from Windows 10 Home and Pro, but don’t yet provide details on that front.
We’re not sure if all these versions of Windows will be launched at the same time during the summer, or if all the mentioned services will be available for use as well, but we should learn more as additional Windows 10 previews arrive.