Microsoft is said to be preparing a new lightweight version of Windows for Dual-screen devices and Chromebook competitors. According to a new report, the company is said to be working on stripping back its Windows user interface with dual screens in mind. This new hardware could launch as early as later this year, depending on chip and PC maker readiness.
Internally, the project is codenamed ‘Windows Lite.’ Microsoft wants Windows to be ready for PC makers to take advantage of it. Off late, Microsoft has been creating a new composable Shell (C-Shell) and Windows Core OS, a more modular version of the existing Windows Shell that powers many parts of Windows 10. The Windows Lite interface will be similar to current Windows, but it will be a blend of what Microsoft does with its Surface Hub shell and the limited functionality of its Windows Phone Continuum user interface.
Microsoft is using the “Santorini” codename as part of Windows Lite. Santorini is part of the shell work that Microsoft is building to make it different from the current Windows 10. Other reports suggest that Microsoft could ship a dual-screen laptop-like device with or without Windows Lite.
Microsoft might be targeting dual-screen devices initially, but the longer plan is for Windows Lite to help the company better compete against Chromebooks. Microsoft previously tried restricting Windows 10 with an S Mode but is now looking to ship something a lot more basic with Windows Lite. At this moment, it is not clear when Microsoft will ship Windows Lite or what it will eventually be named. Microsoft is holding its Build conference in Seattle in early May, and this would be an ideal opportunity to start revealing Windows Lite strategy.