A Few More Details About Windows 10 S for Firstline Workers

Posted on September 25, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10 with 26 Comments

Earlier today, I wrote about Microsoft’s efforts to bring Windows 10 S to the enterprise, in part via some new third-party PCs. At the time, I didn’t know too much about those PCs, but now we have a bit more information.

First, be sure to review Windows 10 S Moves Tentatively Into the Enterprise for the basics: These PCs will be made by Fujitsu, HP, and Lenovo, and prices start at $275. Since then, we’ve learned that Acer is also part of this group.

These new PCs specifically target a new sub-market within the enterprise for so-called firstline workers, which Microsoft is also hitting with a new version of Microsoft 365. These are the users who “are first to engage customers, represent a company’s brand, and see products and services in action,” Microsoft says.

So there are four new PCs coming from three of those PC makers. (It’s not clear what’s up with Fujitsu.) They are:

Acer Aspire 1. A 14-inch ultraslim laptop that ships in Q4 2017, with prices starting at $299.

Acer Swift 1. A 14-inch ultraslim laptop that ships in Q4 2017, with prices starting at $349.

HP Stream 14 Pro. A 14-inch ultraslim laptop that ships in October for $275 and up.

Lenovo V330. A 14-inch ultraslim laptop that ships in February 2018 and will cost $349 and up.

So the screen size is interesting. Unlike the education-focused Windows 10 S PCs that launched earlier this year with 11-inch screens, these new firstline worker PCs all have 14-inch displays. That’s good news for actual adults, though I still question the viability of Windows 10 S, of course.

Additionally, Microsoft is expanding the Windows 10 product family yet again with something called Windows 10 Enterprise in S mode. It’s exactly what it sounds like: Where “normal” Windows 10 S is basically Windows 10 Pro with a few missing features, Windows 10 Enterprise in S mode is the same, but for Windows 10 Enterprise. It will be offered through Microsoft 365.

“With the new Windows 10 Enterprise in S mode, customers will be able to experience Windows 10 Enterprise with all the benefits of Windows 10 S – streamlined for security and low total cost of ownership,” Microsoft notes.

Windows 10 Enterprise in S mode will be available in “a future update,” which I assume is Windows 10 version 1803.

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