Windows 10 S Moves Tentatively Into the Enterprise

Posted on September 25, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10 with 6 Comments

Windows 10 S Moves Tentatively Into the Enterprise

Microsoft is now expanding the reach of Windows 10 S beyond education to include so-called “front-line workers” in the enterprise.

There’s not a lot of information about this initiative yet. But here’s what I know so far.

First, three PC makers—Fujitsu, HP, and Lenovo—have agreed to sell inexpensive, Windows 10-based PCs to businesses. Prices start at $275. These PCs will be just as low-end as the education-based Windows 10 PCs that various PC makers announced in the spring. But more expensive and more capable versions will be offered too, closing the gap with Microsoft’s expensive Surface Laptop.

Microsoft refers to these PCs as being “Microsoft 365-powered,” suggesting that those businesses that subscribe to Microsoft 365 F1, which is likewise aimed at front-line workers, will be able to use Windows 10 S instead of Windows 10 Business or Enterprise, as has been the case so far.

The front-line worker bit is interesting. Obviously, Windows 10 S is not acceptable to most IT workers, so limiting the audience in this way makes sense.

And while it’s unclear if this announcement is tied to Windows 10 S, it appears that new Windows 10 capabilities around remote PC deployment and management will, in fact, support Windows 10 S too. Meaning that Microsoft is doing work to make this offering more acceptable to IT.

I’ve not seen any of these new PCs yet, but this is one of the Ignite announcements that I’ll be examining further this week


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Comments (6)

6 responses to “Windows 10 S Moves Tentatively Into the Enterprise”

  1. ben55124

    If the pro upgrade continues to be $50 for Win S, that may be cheaper way to get to Pro than the $100 Win Home upgrade.

  2. MikeGalos

    Not sure whether to go with the headline where Windows 10 S is moving into the enterprise or the body of the article where it may or may not be but in either case it makes sense.

    Windows 10 S makes a lot of sense in any managed environment, be it school or office or factory, where what's on the PC and how it's used are controlled for specific uses.

    Corporations do this now without the added benefits of Windows 10 S and this would both cut costs and make IT management and support easier.

    • chrisrut

      In reply to MikeGalos: I agree Mike. We live by HIPAA, so control is mandatory, and not always easy to achieve. Security is the opposite of convenience.

      Realistically, there is no need for 80% of my users to have all the power of a workstation at their disposal - and many security reasons they shouldn't. A few commercial bits like maps and pdf readers, O365, web apps, and custom W32 LOB apps define their tool needs. The limiting factor with W10S seems to be administrator-friendly ways to package those existing custom LOB apps for publication in the Store (developer time is at a premium). This same need also limits the ability of products such as Chromebooks (Wait. Chromedesks? Surely they're working on Chromedesks...) to replace Windows workstations.

      Sure, sooner or later all the old apps will be replaced by newer and hopefully better stuff - but that same "it'll get done someday" attitude let Y2K creep up and wrap around our necks. It ignores the reality that companies are built around the framework of policy and procedure that's embedded in their apps. So changing app means changing workflows - to a greater or lesser degree reorganizing the company if you will... which gets complicated and expensive. Aye, what a tangled web we weave...

  3. AlexKven

    That picture is from Seattle University!! I graduated from there.

  4. Win74ever

    A joke, next.