Mind = blown! Microsoft announced Windows 11 earlier this month, then followed up really quick with the release of a preview version for Insiders that is currently available in the Dev channel.
In theory, since the testing has just begun, with the OS set for launch later this year, you could be forgiven for thinking that Windows 11 is still in its early days. An RTM version would likely be readied closer to when the operating system is set to see daylight.
But according to some voices, this isn’t necessarily the case.
TIL that Windows 11 Insider build is actually the RTM’d core OS for hardware partners. All the UX stuff they’ve kept in hiding, and Android support, will be added via software updates & Store updates. Benefit of decoupling your app platform from your OS, I guess 👀 https://t.co/qUhLV4M0dr
— Steve Troughton-Smith (@stroughtonsmith) June 30, 2021
According to the developer, the preview build that Microsoft shipped to Insiders is actually an RTM build of the operating system. And if this sounds odd, then that is because the company is going with a different approach for the operating system.
RTM refers to “Release to Manufacturing”, which is a classic concept where a version of Windows reached the final stage of development, and was ready to be sent to hardware partners.
But this time around, Redmond is doing things different. The base of Windows 11 is done, and the core OS that Microsoft sends to hardware partners to load onto new devices is already compiled months ahead.
The focus now will be on the user interface, trying to polish the experience for users before the public rollout begins, and adding in stuff that they have kept hidden — like Android support.
This is the benefit of decoupling the app platform from the operating system. Microsoft is now in a position to update elements of Windows like Edge, via software and store updates, without messing with the core of the OS.
Now, why didn’t someone think of this before!