It appears that Microsoft is working to bring cellular connectivity and improvements to power management with Windows 10 version 1803 (Redstone 4) scheduled to roll out sometime in Spring of 2018.
During the WinHEC Fall 2017 Workshop, the software giant made a presentation where Intel and ARM-based devices can include eSIM technology to stay always connected to cellular networks. Recently, we’ve also seen Microsoft and various hardware partners showing off some of these always connected devices featuring Qualcomm processors.
Today, a number of devices running Windows 10, such as Surface Pro, can connect to LTE networks, but using a SIM card that is set up at the point of sale.
However, as reported by ZDNet, it seems that the Redstone 4 update will introduce an easier way to connect to cellular networks. According to the WinHEC presentation, users will be able to enroll their PCs to data plans by downloading an eSIM profile from their mobile operator. Removing the need to go to a store to configure the device.
Microsoft may also start testing an Enterprise eSIM feature, where enterprises will be able to buy data plans subscription in bulk from mobile operators and deploy using the mobile device management built into Microsoft Intune.
Alongside making it simple for users and businesses to keep devices always connected to the internet, Microsoft is also working to improve the power managements on these device, which is another important part of always connected PCs.
Windows 10 already offers “Modern Standby,” which is an evolution of Connected Standby, and it’s responsible to manage background activities and specific wake scenarios which are no longer available on legacy power modes.
Modern Standby can already be found on mobile devices, but Microsoft and Intel will be working together to bring the same features to desktops. In addition, we may also see Wake-on Remote Desktop coming to Windows 10 thanks to Modern Standby, which is a compliment to Wake-on Voice and Wake-on Fingerprint reader.
Microsoft has yet to announce when these features will be available, but seeing that always connected PCs running on ARM processors coming next year, along with those always connected Intel-based devices, it’s likely that these PCs would be the first to incorporate the new features.