A few weeks ago, Microsoft unveiled its education-focused platform called Windows 10 S. The new operating system has a lot of things going for it. However, there are certain limitations, especially if you want to run Win32 applications, which requires Windows 10 Pro.
However, Microsoft is offering paths to upgrade to Windows 10 Pro for free. This is not available to anyone, and indeed the company wants Windows 10 S to be a success without the need for Pro. However, while students and educators might want a lighter OS, some other may need full functionality.
For example, users with assistive technologies on their PCs may need classic Win32 apps. With that in mind, Microsoft has today announced it will let assistive tech users upgrade to Windows 10 Pro for free.
In its announcement, Microsoft says that it is committed to bringing more assistive solutions to the Windows Store. In other words, the company wants to make Windows 10 S more viable to users who use such technology.
“We are also working closely with assistive technology partners to continue to improve their experiences with Windows 10 and to support deploying more assistive technology apps in the Microsoft Store.”
Some of those Windows 10 improvements for accessibility will come in the Fall Creators Update. However, the company does not say whether these will be compatible with the Windows Store.
Windows 10 S
Of course, it is worth mentioning that Windows 10 S is not meant to be a replacement for Windows 10 Pro. Instead, it is a lightweight version of the platform that should appeal to educators and students.
For anyone else, there is little interest to want Windows 10 S other than to get one of the affordable laptops that will ship with the OS. Even in this case, Microsoft has already said customers buying the hardware get a free upgrade to Windows 10 Pro.
Windows 10 S was developed as a rival to Google's Chrome OS. However, it has several advantages over Chrome. Chief among them is that Microsoft's platform does not rely on the cloud. Chrome can be severely limited by a lack of connectivity, while Windows 10 S is not hampered and is fully functional without Wi-Fi.