Technology

Microsoft announces Windows 11 SE, a new Chrome OS competitor

Microsoft has created a new version of Windows 11 designed for college kids and faculties. Windows 11 SE will ship solely on low-cost laptops which might be constructed for Ok-8 lecture rooms, and it marks one other try by Microsoft to tackle Google’s vary of Chromebooks and their recognition in US faculties.

Microsoft has struggled to grasp why faculties and college students have flocked to Chromebooks. The corporate tried an S Mode beforehand that basically locked Windows 10 all the way down to apps from the Microsoft Retailer. The restriction was extra of an irritation for finish customers and faculties, as there weren’t sufficient apps obtainable within the Microsoft Retailer for it to make sense.

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Windows 11 SE comes with all the important thing Microsoft 365 apps preinstalled.

Picture: Microsoft

Windows 11 SE takes a completely different method to a Windows version for faculties, and it’s a related course the place Microsoft was initially heading with Windows 10X earlier than its cancelation. Windows 11 SE will solely be obtainable on new low-cost gadgets and just for faculties and schooling clients. Whereas Windows 11 SE is, naturally, optimized for Microsoft Edge, Workplace, and Microsoft’s cloud-based providers, it’s not restricted to simply Microsoft apps.

“Windows 11 SE additionally helps third-party apps, together with Zoom and Chrome, as a result of we wish to give faculties the selection to make use of what works greatest for them,” says Paige Johnson, head of Microsoft’s schooling advertising and marketing. IT admins might be answerable for what apps get put in, and gadgets might be managed to silently replace outdoors of sophistication time.

A lot of the Windows 11 SE adjustments are pretty minor, although. Microsoft has spent the previous 18 months speaking to academics and college students to get suggestions on its efforts thus far on low-cost Windows laptops. That suggestions has led to apps all the time launching in fullscreen mode on Windows 11 SE, and Microsoft has eliminated the a number of Snap Layouts on this version in favor of a single mode that allows you to place apps facet by facet.

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Microsoft has simplified Snap Layouts in Windows 11 SE.

Picture: Microsoft

The new Widgets part of Windows 11 has additionally been eliminated in SE, as Microsoft discovered it’s distracting in a classroom surroundings. Microsoft Edge will even be configured to simply accept Chrome extensions, which is turned off by default on Windows 11. Many colleges within the US depend on Chrome extensions as a part of their Chrome OS utilization, so this alteration is a clear recognition of that. Windows 11 SE additionally backs up paperwork to OneDrive by default, with offline help to make it simpler for college kids to make use of these Windows 11 SE laptops past simply the classroom.

Windows 11 SE will even ship with a new colourful Bloom wallpaper by default and a few adjustments to the way in which apps are bundled. Whilst you would possibly expertise having two completely different variations of OneNote or Groups in Windows 11, Microsoft is cleansing this up in Windows 11 SE so solely a single model is put in.

(*11*)Windows 11 SE will solely be obtainable on low-cost laptops which might be offered to colleges. Acer, Asus, Dell, Dynabook, Fujitsu, HP, JK-IP, Lenovo, and Positivo are all creating Windows 11 SE laptops within the coming months. Microsoft even has its personal $249 Floor Laptop computer SE, which units the stage for Windows 11 SE. The bottom mannequin ships with an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of eMMC storage, and an 11.6-inch (1366 x 768) show. You possibly can learn all concerning the Floor Laptop computer SE proper right here.

The Floor Laptop computer SE specs reveal the kind of low-cost gadgets that may ship with Windows 11 SE. Microsoft tells us it has made a lot of efficiency enhancements tuned in the direction of 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage gadgets, so hopefully Windows 11 SE holds up properly on these low-cost laptops.

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The $249 Floor Laptop computer SE ships with Windows 11 SE.

Picture: Microsoft

Windows 11 SE, which in line with Microsoft isn’t meant to be brief for something, can also be a large a part of the corporate’s total efforts to compete with Chrome OS. Microsoft has typically ignored what makes Chrome OS really easy to make use of and handle for IT admins and faculties, and Windows 11 SE laptops will now be prepared to speak to Microsoft Intune right away for setup functions.

That makes it simpler for IT admins to provision these gadgets with a extra simplified backend administration console for schooling. Microsoft can also be bundling apps like Groups, Workplace, OneNote, Minecraft for Schooling, and Flipgrid in Windows 11 SE so IT admins don’t have to put in them individually. This could make it simpler for college kids to easily open up a Windows 11 SE laptop computer, kind their login data, and immediately get entry to their apps and cloud paperwork.

Microsoft is anticipating Windows 11 SE laptops to reach in schooling channels later this 12 months and into 2022, simply because the schooling shopping for season begins.

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