Windows 10 S – What Is It?

Windows 10 S – Why Have Microsoft Brought This Out?

Windows 10 S is a relatively new version of that Operating System and was released in mid 2017.  Microsoft quote: “Windows 10 S is a specific configuration of Windows 10 Pro (Professional) that offers a familiar, productive Windows experience that’s streamlined for security and performance”. Also interestingly Microsoft doesn’t know (or won’t say) what the S stands for, they do use words in their advertising such as: streamlined; simplicity; security; speed.

After that grandiose statement, you would be no doubt correct in thinking that this is far superior to any Windows 10 version that has come before, it’s faster, its more secure and it scratches your back in the bath. Unfortunately, you would be wrong. Windows 10 S brings restrictions rather than anything else, so below I will list the “new” features.

Features of Windows 10 S

  1. In Windows 10 S you can only install applications from the Windows Store. Not heard of the Windows Store? Well neither have most people. The Apple Store – yes, Google Store – yes, but Windows? Microsoft has actually rebranded it as the Microsoft Store in 2017. Just as an aside, as of January 2020 www.statista.com put the number of apps in Google Play @ 2,570,000; Apple @ 1,840,000; Windows @ 669,000 and Amazon @ 489,000.
  2. You also cannot install boxed software with CDs or DVDs on Windows 10 S.
  3. You cannot install Google Chrome and many other programs/apps that you no doubt regularly use on Windows 10 S.
  4. You cannot install software downloaded to your computer from the Internet or from a USB drive on Windows 10 S.
  5. The above is because installing anything other than software from the Windows 10 store is considered dangerous to your computer, by Microsoft.
  6. Microsoft also earns money from paid products in the Microsoft Store and for free apps, they can advertise greatly any of their products or their “sponsors”, so it’s a big money earner for Microsoft.
  7. Therefore no Firefox or other browser either, so you are forced into using Microsoft Edge and their Search Engine Bing, which is not everyone’s “cup of tea”.
  8. Microsoft announced Windows 10 S at an education event therefore presumably targeting Educational institutions. Some of these institutions, particularly overseas use Chromebooks which are as popular here in Australia as getting the flu.
  9. Strangely Windows 10 S is not available to buy it only comes with new computers.
  10. The Guardian newspaper ran an interesting article back when Windows 10 S was released so you can read it here: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/03/windows-10-s-microsoft-faster-pc-comparison

Good News Regarding Windows 10 S

There is good news however, you can convert Windows 10 S on your computer to Windows 10 Home at no cost. Download Chrome (or anything else from the Internet) try and run the downloaded file and Windows 10 S states this is not possible, but, if you follow their screen prompts you can go to the Microsoft Store and after logging in (yes, you have to have a Microsoft account here, so maybe another series of steps and a lot more time involved for some people) then you can download a file and run it, therefore turning Windows 10 S into Windows 10 Home whereby you can do what you want with YOUR computer.

Please note: Once the above file is run you cannot go back to Windows 10 S, please understand this point.

One last point I would like to make is Grandma or Grandad will not be calling you so often if you would just buy them a Windows 10 S computer. Problem Solved.

As always, these are articles are purely based on our experiences and contain our opinions and should not be read as facts.

If you need computer advice of assistance then please contact us here at Affordable Computer Repairs – we are open during the Coronavirus pandemic and practising social distancing.

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