Third time's a charm

Windows Lite could be the new answer to Chrome OS

Microsoft is building a new lightweight OS to compete with Chrome OS. It's known as "Windows Lite," but final product may not use the "Windows" name. It'll run only the Store apps, and it'll have a different UI.

Colorful Microsoft logo

Microsoft appears to be building a completely new operating system to go against the increasingly popular Chrome OS. According to a new report from Petri, the software giant is working on a new version of its operating system dubbed “Windows Lite,” but the final product may not even carry the “Windows” name.

Although this might actually be something different, the idea to have a light version of the desktop operating system to compete with Chromebook isn’t new. Microsoft has already tried multiple times with Windows RT, which ended up being very confusing for consumers, and then, the company also tried with Windows 10 S, a restricted version of the operating system, which pretty much everyone switched to the full version almost immediately.

The report also reveals that Windows Lite will only be able to run Progressive Web apps (PWAs) and Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps limiting users to only apps from the Microsoft Store and stripping everything else.

Also, it seems that this won’t be a version that will be able to buy or run on an enterprise or on small office environments as the report suggests that only manufacturers will be able to install Windows Lite on devices.

The plan with Windows Lite is to make the operating system lightweight and connected with the ability to run on any processor.

The most interesting information with Windows Lite is that the final product may not even use the word “Windows,” and it’ll use a different user interface to avoid confusion with Windows 10.

If the plan moves forward, we might see “Windows Lite” on a new device form factor currently known as Project Centaurus, which it’s rumored to be the foldable device that may see the light in 2019.

At this time there isn’t a lot of details other than rumors and several references of “Lite” in the latest Windows Insider preview builds and SDKs for the Windows 10 19H1 development. However, Build 2019 is just a few months away, and we can only expect to hear more about this project during the event.