Microsoft: Windows 10 was never meant to be ‘the last version of Windows’ because the OS shouldn’t be ‘stagnant’, says executive

Exclusive: ‘Years ago people were really just fitting the PC into their lives” Panos Panay told The Independent, ‘and I think today … we’re fitting our lives into the PC it’s like the exact opposite’

Adam Smith
Friday 25 June 2021 20:48 BST
Introducing Windows 11
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Windows 10 was never supposed to be the ‘last version of Windows’ because the operating system is not supposed to be ‘stagnant’, chief product officer for Windows Panos Panay told The Independent.

In 2015, with the launch of Windows 10, developer evangelist Jerry Nixon said that it was to be the “last version of Windows” – something that sparked interest when Microsoft launched its new operating system this week, bringing with it a new user interface and start menu, better integration with Xbox games, and other features.

When asked by The Independent why Microsoft’s attitude to the operating system changed, Mr Panay said that there are “couple of ways to think about it. And … I was actually asked that question earlier this morning and I had no idea.”

He continued: “Windows was always meant to be innovation for customers, like always, it’s never meant to be stagnant. You know when the when you design a product, you have to think: What do your customers need? What do they need next? What are the big shifts happening?

“You can imagine the shift over the last 18 months and even before, with the creative economy growing and different things that were happening in the world.

“Windows 11, I believe, is probably coming at the right time for folks … Years ago people were really just fitting the PC into their lives. When you needed, how you needed it. And I think today … we’re fitting our lives into the PC it’s like the exact opposite. And you think about that and the design principles around it and what we’re trying to do, to empower people to produce and inspire … that that led to this, you know, major shift, I think, in Windows.”

Although Windows 11 might be a “major shift” in the company’s operating system, it’s one that might not come to a huge number of users. The free upgrade from Windows 10 requires a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) chip, which protect passwords and encryption keys, but one that many devices are unlikely to have.

Windows 11 also only supports eighth generation and newer Intel Core processors, Apollo Lake, and newer Pentium and Celeron processors.

Such a huge change will cut out a fair number of existing devices, including most of the company’s Surface Pro tablets, the Surface Hub, and the Surface studio.

Microsoft did not respond to The Independent’s questions about the decision prior to publication.

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