Microsoft is revamping Windows 10 S, its version of Windows 10 customized for students, from a standalone operating system to a version of Windows 10. Its new incarnation will be called “S Mode,” and will roll out next year.
The mode will restrict Windows 10 to only run certain apps from the Microsoft store. These include Office 365, which has a version designed for students and teachers.
While rumors of S Mode dropped last month, Microsoft corporate vice president of operating systems Joe Belfiore confirmed them in a tweet on Tuesday.
We use Win10S as an option for schools or businesses that want the ‘low-hassle’/ guaranteed performance version. Next year 10S will be a “mode” of existing versions, not a distinct version. SO … I think it’s totally fine/good that it’s not mentioned.
— Joe Belfiore (@joebelfiore) March 7, 2018
Earlier reports have indicated that Windows 10 Home users will be able to disable S Mode for free, but Windows 10 Pro users with S Mode enabled on their device will have to pay $49 to disable it. These details have not been confirmed.
Whether S Mode is enabled on a given device may be up to PC manufacturers, as is the case with 10 S’s main competitor, Chrome OS.
Windows 10 S was released last May, in response to the rising popularity of sub-$300 Chromebooks. Microsoft has claimed that 10 S will not only simplify your browsing experience, but also improve your system’s performance and battery life. It also defaults to saving all documents to the cloud, which is ideal for affordable systems with less storage such as the Surface Laptop.
However, there’s one catch: You’re stuck with Microsoft Edge as your default browser. So if you’re a student, just keep that in mind.