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Microsoft plans to switch to cloud-based Windows

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In an internal presentation unveiled during the ongoing FTC vs. Microsoft hearing, the software giant reveals its plans to bring Windows to the cloud for consumers.

The presentation titled “Windows 365: Enabling a Cloud-Streamed Windows OS for Any Device” outlines Microsoft’s strategy to leverage the power of the cloud to provide a full Windows operating system experience on various devices, reported The Verge.

While Windows 365 is predominantly available to commercial customers, Microsoft has been actively integrating it into Windows 11. In a future update, the introduction of Windows 365 Boot will enable Windows 11 devices to directly log into a Cloud PC instance during boot, bypassing the local version of Windows. Furthermore, Windows 365 Switch is set to be integrated into Windows 11’s Task View, enhancing the integration of Cloud PCs into the virtual desktops feature.

The transition of Windows to the cloud for consumers aligns with Microsoft’s focus on its ‘Modern Life’ consumer space, aiming to deliver improved AI-based services and seamless roaming of users’ digital experience. By capitalising on cloud and client computing capabilities, Microsoft envisions a future where users can access a full Windows operating system on any device, revolutionizing the way they interact with technology.

In addition to the cloud-streamed Windows vision, the presentation highlights Microsoft’s emphasis on custom silicon partnerships. The company has been exploring collaborations for ARM-powered devices like the Surface Pro X, and there are indications that Microsoft may design its own ARM-based processors for servers and potentially Surface devices.

Photo by CC Photo Labs /
Microsoft planning a cloud-based Windows OS can be seen as a strategy to counter Chromebooks’ popularity. | Photo by CC Photo Labs /

Furthermore, recent reports suggest Microsoft’s interest in developing its own AI chips, signalling a broader commitment to advancing artificial intelligence capabilities.

The internal presentation also underlines Microsoft’s commitment to strengthening the commercial value of Windows and responding to the threat posed by Chromebooks. Cloud PCs with Windows 365 are identified as a long-term opportunity for commercial use, indicating Microsoft’s intention to expand the adoption of cloud-based computing in enterprise environments.

Microsoft has announced Windows Copilot, an AI-powered assistant for Windows 11, as part of its broader AI push. Currently being tested internally, this feature can summarize and rewrite app content while providing explanations. Microsoft aims to release Windows Copilot to testers in June before making it available to all Windows 11 users.

Integrating AI into Windows is part of Microsoft’s larger strategy to enhance the capabilities of its operating system. Collaborations with AMD and Intel are underway to enable more Windows features on next-generation CPUs, and both companies have hinted at the possibility of a future Windows 12 release.

Microsoft’s Windows chief, Panos Panay, has expressed his belief that AI will transform how users interact with Windows, hinting at the significant role AI will play in the future of the operating systems.

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Kumar Hemant

Kumar Hemant

Deputy Editor at Candid.Technology. Hemant writes at the intersection of tech and culture and has a keen interest in science, social issues and international relations. You can contact him here: