Windows 10X: A Developer’s Sandbox

Windows 10X: Play With The Building Blocks Of Windows 10

Windows 10X is something many people are unfamiliar with. It is a new version of Windows 10 that will essentially be customizable for developers to use on different devices. This base version will allow for many devices to use a “full” version of Windows instead of, for instance, a lite version used for a tablet.

A few months ago, there was a hands-on display for a first ever look at Windows 10X in action. As of today,  Microsoft has announced plans to focus Windows 10 X development efforts on single-screen devices. They still have intentions of releasing a dual-screen version eventually.

People familiar with Windows 10 should have no issue jumping right in. It is very similar, and the differences aren’t too jarring.

Light and dark themes are available, just like the full version of Windows 10. The Start Menu will look different to many. The live tiles from Windows 8 and Windows 10 are gone. A more standard view of applications are shown. The search feature will still allow you to find apps and documents, and includes the integrated web search Windows 10 had introduced.

Another difference is not something that will disappoint me one bit. Windows 10X does not include Cortana. While voice search is available, Cortana was not present, not even in the settings as a feature that can be enabled.

Additionally, applications in Windows 10X won’t fully float around the screen like in Windows 10. The apps open on one screen. On dual-screen devices, you can drag the app to use it across both screens, like one large screen. There are many other changes, too. File Explorer has been replaced with a modern version that will support device file transfers, which is a great built-in feature.

The new Wonder bar will allow for easy use of gifs, emojis, and other types of files. This gives the device a nice balance between the ease of a mobile device, but full functionality of a Windows 10 machine.

In the end, Windows 10X as demonstrated is still a basic version of what it can be. However, developers ability to make customizations to the operating system will really open the doors for great creativity and likely some of the best user features ever seen in a Microsoft operating system.

(Image credit: iCLIPART)