We're also waiting to hear what this means for antivirus and security apps, which will reportedly also run in S Mode, despite being Win32.exe files.
Microsoft has confirmed today that it's going to discontinue Windows 10 S as a separate iteration of its platform and instead offer it as a new "S Mode" in existing Windows 10 versions starting next year. Windows 10 S works only with the UWP apps Microsoft itself provides from the app store.
Earlier reports have indicated that Windows 10 Home users will be able to disable S Mode for free, but Windows 10 Pro users with S Mode enabled on their device will have to pay $49 to disable it. In a rather freaky development, however, it turns out that the Windows 10 S was actually hiding the full version of Windows 10 - a feature that could be unlocked on the majority of operating systems for a $50 fee.
The disappointment of Windows RT might explain why Microsoft has been so quick to change its approach with Windows 10 S, which has so far been available on only a handful of Surface tablets and other devices.
Belfiore, a corporate vice president in the Operating System Group within Windows, tweeted his statement in response to a PCWorld reporter's own comment that Microsoft had neglected to mention Windows 10 S in a recent blog post touting the success of Windows devices in schools.
Microsoft is touting that this platform will provide apps with low-latency processing by using local capabilities to deliver real-time results. "Next year 10S will be a "mode" of existing versions, not a distinct version". Hopefully in a few more years up updates we'll just get a global "OFF" switch.