At the Surface event on October 2, Microsoft shared more details about Windows 10X, which is a part of the Windows Core OS / Windows Lite OS family. It is the next version of Windows designed from the ground up for dual-screen devices and other form factors.
Windows 10X is for dual-screen and foldable devices like Surface Neo, at least for now. At the moment, Microsoft has no plans to bring Windows 10X to the traditional desktops and existing devices, but that could change in the future.
“Windows 10 is not an upgrade if you already own a PC,” Microsoft said. For the time being, Windows 10X is being developed for new form-factors only and Microsoft will continue to invest in improving the current Windows 10 experience on desktops and laptops.
Windows 10X comes with a modern Start menu that has recent apps and AI-powered apps suggestions. Live tile is gone in favour of standard apps icons, which is similar to Android and iOS.
It also comes with a redesigned Taskbar where Start menu and apps are aligned centre. The other Windows elements including Action Center and Settings have been modernized in Windows 10X as well.
While Microsoft says Windows 10X is built on top of traditional Windows 10 operating system, the OS actually runs on top of long-rumoured Windows Core OS and it is also a part of shared technologies called “one core”.
It’s likely that the new UI elements that are currently being developed for Windows 10X will eventually find their way to Windows 10. If this happens, you can expect a new Start Menu, Action Center, improved Windows Update experience and more in the coming years.
Windows 10X bits should start showing up Windows 10 preview builds when Microsoft starts testing Windows 10 Fall 2020 Update codenamed ‘Manganese’. Microsoft is expected to start testing Windows 10 Manganese update preview builds in Spring or Summer of 2020.