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  • Farewell, Neo, we hardly knew ye

    Posted on April 9th, 2020 at 07:36 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    (Now-nixed Neo on the right; Duo on the left. Thx for the correction WildBill!)

    Those of you waiting with bated breath for the arrival of Microsoft’s announced Surface Neo will have to bate a little longer.

    Mary Jo Foley at ZDNet has the inside scoop:

    My contacts say that Chief Product Officer Panos Panay informed some of his team internally today, April 8, that Microsoft wouldn’t be delivering its own Surface Neo dual-screen 10X devices this calendar year.

    So if you’ve been setting aside the shekels for a new dual-screen Windows machine around Christmas time, you can use the money for something else. I, for one, will hardly notice the difference.

    There’s something larger afoot here, besides the postponement of a device that I think about 0.00001% of the Windows universe will actually use. Microsoft’s stopped using the absurd smoke screen about Windows 10X (nee Windows Lite) being for dual-screen devices only. We may get a Windows-based Chromebook competitor sooner rather than later if Win10X isn’t locked into the concept of dual-screen.

    I use the term “competitor” lightly, of course. It’ll take years for MS to make a little Windows that actually, you know, works.

  • Mary Branscombe: A deeper dive into Windows 10X

    Posted on February 28th, 2020 at 08:06 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    TechRepublic just published an excellent article by Mary Branscombe (@marypcbuk on Twitter) that digs into the internals of (what we know about) Windows 10X:

    Windows 10X is designed for security and isolation, running all traditional Win32 apps in a container (actually a lightweight VM), separating the state of apps and drivers from the OS itself (with all the system files, registry keys and other data for an app written to an app data folder in the Win32 container rather than into the OS), and making the OS read-only. That speeds up updates, and means you don’t need as much anti-malware scanning — which again improves performance.

    Windows Core OS. What might appear in the second 2020 update to Win10 (20H2) and the first update in 2021 (21H1). Small and large cores. Krypton Containers. WinUI 3.0. Updates to user interface controls that don’t require changes to the operating system. Good stuff.

    If you thought Win10X was just for Neo and Duo, arriving around Christmas time, this article should be a real eye-opener.

    (TechRepublic is a ZDNet property. Like ZDNet, it’s owned by CBS.)

  • Windows 10X: Future fireworks or another dud?

    Posted on February 24th, 2020 at 01:15 Tracey Capen Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    WOODY’S WINDOWS WATCH

    By Woody Leonhard

    Last week, Microsoft took the wraps off its next, next, next version of Windows, the long-anticipated Windows Lite – er, Windows 10X.

    Billed as the dual-screen version of Windows, and expected to ship around Christmas time with the two-screen folding Surface Neo and Surface Duo, Windows 10X seems positioned to become the next version of the last version of Windows.

    I’m skeptical — as usual.

    Read the full story in AskWoody Plus Newsletter 17.8.0 (2020-02-24).

  • Surface Neo and Duo – coming a year from now

    Posted on October 2nd, 2019 at 10:46 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    I just finished watching the Surface presentation. Most of it was ho-hum, well anticipated (thanks, Evan!), and kind of repetitive. The Surface Pro X (with an ARM chip) is moderately interesting. Mary Jo Foley has details, availability and pricing on ZDNet.

    But then the presentation ended with a bang. Microsoft is finally bringing out the almost-decade-old concept of a mobile machine with side-by-side screens, called Andromeda, er, Surface Neo. Along with Surface Neo, we’ll also get a tweaked version of Win10 called Windows 10 Lite, er, Windows Core OS, uh, Windows 10 X, that supports two interacting side-by-side screens with a hinge in the middle.

    Details are scarce, but Paul Thurrott has a speculative article about Win10X (paywalled). No, Win10X isn’t the son of Win10 in S Mode. (No, Windows 10 X does not run on Surface Pro X. What, you expected any different? UPDATE: The Surface Pro X also isn’t compatible with TypeCovers.)

    That’s kind of cool, albeit a year out. What’s really interesting is the Android phone that Microsoft’s going to deliver in about a year: the Surface Duo. Yes, that’s right: It’s an Android phone, er, device with two side-by-side, interacting and folding screens with a hinge in the middle. Details in Wired.

    As folks get their hands on working prototypes, we’ll have lots more coverage. For now, sit tight. We’ll have lots to discuss as the details hit the fan.