The company wants to take on Google's Chrome OS / Twitter/Windows

'Streamlined for simplicity'

Microsoft has just launched a radically different version of its Windows operating system.

It's being lined up as a direct competitor to Chrome OS – a simple, web-focused desktop operating system created by Google.

The device runs Windows 10 S, a new version of Windows 10. In previous leaks, it’s been called Windows 10 Cloud OS.

“Streamlined for simplicity,” said Terry Myerson, the executive vice president of the Windows and devices group, who went on to describe it as “the soul of today’s Windows.”

Windows 10 S runs on the full range of Windows 10 hardware, including high-end models like the Surface Book, and has a slightly different default desktop image to Windows 10. 

Like Chrome OS, it’s lightweight and streamlined, designed for teachers, students and customers who only require access to certain core programs, such as the Edge browser and educational apps.

It's also designed to boot up quickly, making it ideal for the classroom.

Everything that runs on Windows 10 S has to be downloaded from the Windows Store, which will suggest alternatives to any programs it doesn't offer.

Windows 10 S will be available this summer, ahead of the start of the next academic year.

Microsoft also unveiled the stunning new Surface Laptop alongside it.

“Talent is everywhere but opportunity is not,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, whose main slogan at the launch event was 'democratising educational opportunity'.

The company last month released the Windows 10 Creators Update, but recently warned customers not to download it manually, due to “issues” that could damage certain computers.

Newer, high-end machines, such as Microsoft’s Surface Book, will automatically receive the update ahead of others, as they should be better-equipped to deal with potential bugs.