Microsoft launched and positioned the Windows 10X operating system as the one made for powering only dual-screen PCs and other foldable devices. But later a major leak revealed many details about Windows 10X including the possibility of Microsoft making it available for traditional laptops too.
In this article we take a look at top new features, UI changes and probable release date for Windows 10X as revealed in various leaks so far.
Windows 10X release date:
Microsoft may be planning to release Windows 10X in Q3 2020 just before making its dual-screen devices Surface Neo available to the market.
Windows 10X New features/UI changes:
Windows 10X new launcher experience:
The following screenshot explains the anatomy of Windows 10X. One notworthy thing is that Microsoft refers to the Windows 10X UI layer as the “launcher” akin to Android launchers.
New Taskbar experience:
Microsoft has equipped Windows 10X with a new Taskbar experience that will be same across both clamshells and foldables.
For both clamshells and foldables, the taskbar will be the same base model with a series of “levers” which can be pulled to create some alternatives in the model. We want to build these levers to address the deltas between the two experiences, while still building off the same initial model. Levers include:
• Centered vs. Left-aligned Taskbar content • Number of pins • Number of recents • Order of recents (recency vs. reverse recency) • Divider vs. no divider • Task View icon at far right vs. next to Start
New search experience:
Windows 10X search will show your apps, websites and it will reccomended things that you may be using frequently or need to do next.
Now some details about how search is getting enhanced in Windows 10X.
Find what you need on the web, or look for apps and files on your device. A single entry point to Search across your device is simple and effortless.
• Zero input suggestions
• Active input and search results
• Supports touch, keyboard, and voice input
New screen-share (casting) UI & features:
Windows 10X comes with a new screen-share (casting) UI and an interesting new casting feature that allows the device to remain hidden without disconnecting while sharing its screen to an external display.
Music Control UI:
Windows 10X has a new music control UI as screenshot posted by those who were able to port it suggest.
New OOBE boot-up experience:
Check the demo of the new Windows 10X OOBE boot-up experience in the video below.
Apps and Websites experience, Default apps:
You can drag and drop to re-arrange your apps and websites so your favorites are sitting at the top of the list. To get to all your other apps, simply expand the grid to “Show all.” You can include your favorite websites by first installing it as an app, from the Edge browser.
• Inbox default apps include:
Edge, Mail, Calendar, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Mail, Calendar, Teams, Whiteboard, To Do, Photos, Store, File Explorer, Spotify, Netflix, Camera, Solitaire, Calculator, Alarms & Clock, Movies & TV, Office, Sticky Notes, Paint, Learning Hub, Settings, Weather, Snip & Sketch, Voice Recorder, Groove Music, People, Notepad, Feedback Hub, Media Plans, Messaging, and up to 4 OEM apps.
• Create folders and groups by stacking apps together
• Remove apps from the grid to remove them from your device
Microsoft envisions that apps reccomendations will help you to “jump back into your flow” thereby expediting what you want to do with Windows 10X.
Jump back into your flow with recently installed apps; frequently used apps, files, and websites.
• Up to 10 high-confidence recommendations are visible at a time
• If you can’t find what you’re looking for, tap “Show more” to expand more items inline or,
• “Open the file location” from one of the recommended files to explore related files
The leaked lock-screen screenshot gives an idea about how the locking and unlocking UI will look like.
Recent rumors suggest that Windows 10X may bring dynamic wallpapers that changes its appearence throughout the day. For example it may change and show various contents based on time of the day representing morning, evening, night. It may even change appearence based on the weather changes.
Do things Faster:
Windows 10X aims to be the “Faster” Windows 10 with many basic changes and improvemnts over the Windows 10 that we know and use now. The recently leaked documents reveal that Windows 10X will inroduce the concept of “Launcher”, new enhanced search and dynamic app and content reccomendations to speed up how you work with windows.
Microsoft has described how these three changes will let you do your tasks quickly in Windows 10X.
Launcher helps users start and resume tasks quickly. Search is seamlessly integrated with web results, available apps, and specific files on your device. Next up in the hierarchy of content is your default app grid, which can be customized and re-arranged to meet individual needs and preferences. This relatively static set of apps drives predictable views each time Launcher is opened and further assists in accelerating users with the use of muscle memory over time. And lastly, Recommended content is dynamically updated based on your most frequently and recently used apps, files, and wesbites. Jump back into your personal workflow without having to start from scratch.