THE Microsoft confirmed the existence of Windows 10Xwhen it announced the Surface Neo with two screens: the operating system has a different interface for the Start menu and the taskbar, and is capable of running classic Win32 programs. An internal company document reveals more details: it will also be present on notebooks and tablets, will have a faster login experience, and will come with a renewed Windows Explorer.
The Microsoft document was found by the account WalkingCat from Twitter and stayed online for some time until it was taken down. He mentions that Windows 10X will not only run on dual screen devices: the system will be on tablets, with buttons centered on the taskbar; and on laptops, with these buttons aligned to the left (just like in traditional Windows 10).
The Start menu is now called “Launcher”: it has a search bar at the top, and a grid with applications, websites and recommendations. It will be possible to drag and drop the icons to rearrange them and create folders; or select the “Show all” option to expand the grid and see everything that is installed.
By default, the Launcher will show recently installed programs; frequently used apps, files and websites; and “up to 10 highly trusted recommendations”. The search will be integrated with the web and the user’s files.
Windows 10X will have new file explorer
Microsoft also mentions a “modern File Explorer”, but there are no images of it. Windows Explorer has undergone some visual changes over the years, but it has never fully embraced the Metro design of Windows 8, nor the Fluent Design of Windows 10 – it seems that this moment is finally coming.
The login experience promises to be faster: “when the screen is turned on, you are immediately taken to an authentication state; unlike Windows 10, where you first need to slide the lock screen before authenticating, ”explains Microsoft.
Windows 10X will be able to run traditional Win32 programs; Microsoft probably noticed with Windows RT and Windows 10 S that this is an essential feature. It is even prioritizing the Win32 and web versions of the Office suite; universal applications (UWP) developed suspended in 2018.
Other manufacturers are preparing Windows 10X devices, in addition to Microsoft itself. The system is expected to launch alongside Surface Neo, which is scheduled for the end of 2020.