Windows 10 Cloud Build Leaks

    The rumors were true and the UWP app restrictions are in place.

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    Last week it was reported that Microsoft is planning to launch another version of Windows called Windows 10 Cloud. Although Microsoft refused to comment, the rumors pointed to a heavily restricted version of the operating system aimed at competing with Chromebooks at the low-end of the market.

    A build of Windows 10 Cloud was then leaked by Twitter user adguard, and it confirms the predictions: Microsoft is creating a restricted version of Windows 10.

    Downloading and installing the leaked ISO of Windows 10 Cloud isn’t something I’d advise you do, but MSPoweruser went ahead and installed it as a virtual machine to get an idea of what Microsoft is planning.

    Windows 10 Cloud does limit software installations to Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps available through the Windows Store. If the software you want to use isn’t on the Windows Store, then it can’t be used on Windows 10 Cloud. Attempting to install a non-UWP app brings up a “The app you’re trying to run isn’t designed for this version of Windows” error.

    That’s not quite as bad as my suggestion last week that Microsoft would go so far as to limit the experience to its own cloud services, but these are restrictions you have to keep in mind. There’s also a question mark over whether Microsoft will allow Windows 10 Cloud to be upgraded to Windows 10 Home as a way of unlocking more functionality.

    A restricted version of Windows 10 means cheaper licenses for laptop manufacturers, or even no license fee. That in turn suggests even cheaper low-end laptops running Windows and also the possibility this will be the first version of Windows 10 to run on ARM processors in the second half of 2017.