Microsoft Windows 10 S will no longer be its own operating system

Microsoft has confirmed plans to convert Windows 10 S from a dedicated operating system into an optional mode for all existing versions of Windows 10.

The new Windows 10 S mode will roll out as part of the next Windows 10 update and will be a free update for Windows 10 Home, Pro and Enterprise versions.

The operating system, launched last year, is locked down to only run applications verified by Microsoft from the Microsoft store. The operating system was aimed at mass deployments for customers in education with enhanced security and features and simple log-in.

Windows 10 S was originally featured as part of the Surface Laptop, but has since been integrated in more than 20 devices from Microsoft’s OEM partners.

“Starting with the next update to Windows 10, coming soon, customers can choose to buy a new Windows 10 Home or Windows 10 Pro PC with S mode enabled, and commercial customers will be able to deploy Windows 10 Enterprise with S mode enabled,” wrote Windows vice president Joe Belfiore in a blog post.

Belfiore admitted that the operating system was confusing for some customers, and that customers will now be able to switch from S mode for no additional charge.

“We hope this new approach will simplify and make it possible for more customers to start using Windows in S mode: a familiar, productive Windows experience that is streamlined for security and performance across all our editions.”