For years, Microsoft has been trying, unsuccessfully, to find a way to modernize Windows and the apps that run on it. Previous attempts---like Windows RT, Windows 10 S/S Mode, and Windows 10 on ARM have failed, and for the same basic reason: Customers rejected something that looked identical to “real” Windows but couldn’t run all of the classic desktop applications that they rely on and require. And that’s where Windows 10X succeeds: It provides a more modern platform while retaining compatibility with the past.
Sound familiar? It should, because that’s exactly what Microsoft accomplished with Windows NT in the mid-1990s. It created a more modern platform that, in its case, looked and worked exactly like Windows, while also offering compatibility the apps---and drivers and peripherals---that its customers expected to use. Yes, Windows NT was a bit rough at first. But once it fully met its customers' needs, NT became Windows, starting with Windows XP, in 2001.