Microsoft feels a need to go after Google’s Chrome OS, a growing market that sees plenty of attention these days. And the way to do that is apparently a new operating system.
Even with Windows 10 S out there in the wild, Microsoft apparently feels like it needs to have a super lightweight operating system out there to take on Google’s own efforts, and the first real details for what that might look like have surfaced courtesy of Petri. This project has been dubbed “Windows Core OS” in the past, but it’s apparently going by “Windows Lite” right now — but may be called something entirely different when Microsoft officially announces it at some point in the future:
“…there’s something a bit different about Lite that we haven’t seen from every attempt at launching this type of software in the past; it may not be called Windows. With a new name and a different UI, uses WCOS, and is going to be Microsoft’s next ‘big bet’ in the Windows space.”
This new OS will work with personal web apps (PWAs) and Microsoft’s Universal Windows Platform apps, and it’s designed specifically for these. It will reportedly strip out everything else along the way, and focus on being an always connected, instant-on OS. What’s more, it may not even be something that users can buy individually, but it will only be available from original equipment manufacturers (OEM) on their machines at launch.
This is a similar strategy that Microsoft has tried in the past, to some degree. We have seen the company try to launch “slimmer” versions of Windows, dating back to Windows RT and, more recently, Windows 10 S. However, the report indicates that Microsoft is aiming for this new effort to essentially drop the Windows badge (or baggage, if you prefer) and start things fresh. That includes a brand new UI:
“With previous versions, this ‘modern OS’ attempt looked like Windows, acted like Windows, but wasn’t Windows. By significantly changing up the UI, the name, and everything else, it should hopefully ‘feel’ like a fresh start and not a hacked-together attempt at modernizing Windows. Microsoft is removing the baggage from the OS by not naming it Windows, while a risky move, it shows that the company understands that Windows is not its future.”
There is a lot to unpack here, but we’re still missing quite a bit. We don’t know when this new operating system is going to launch, with timelines reportedly still “murky”. However, if this new OS is indeed the real deal we should see more about it at Microsoft’s BUILD conference next year, which usually takes place in May.
It will be interesting to see how this all shakes out. Microsoft obviously sees Chrome OS as a major competitor, which it is. Will a new OS help Microsoft? What do you think?
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