Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Is Microsoft overcomplicating the Surface Laptop proposition?

Microsoft’s Surface Laptop was announced as the flagship device for its new, lightweight, closed-walled Windows 10 S operating system.

The device would represent the pinnacle of Microsoft’s fledgling efforts to take on Google’s Chromebooks in the education market, with more affordable devices following from the likes of HP and ASUS.

Except then Microsoft revealed users could upgrade to the full Windows 10 Pro operating system, offering an opportunity when folks attempted to download apps from outside the Windows Store.

Related: Windows 10 S

Now Microsoft has opened up a path from Windows 10 S to Windows 10 Pro and back again.

However, as The Verge points out, it isn’t easy. While switching from S to Pro takes under a minute, the path back is less simple.

Microsoft is offering restore images to get back to Windows 10 S, but that involves wiping the entire machine and starting from scratch.

The initial upgrade might be tempting to folks who’ve shelled out close to £1,000 for the Surface Laptop, once they realise the only way to install apps is through the Windows Store.

Microsoft is offering the upgrade free on Windows 10 S laptops costing over $799.

There are some reasons users might want to go back, for example, if they’re passing the laptop on to a younger family member and want the security of Store-only downloads.

Whether this is a smart policy remains to be seen. While it’s advantageous for users who decide Windows 10 S isn’t suitable for their needs, what kind of message does that send about the suitability of the new OS in general?

Are you intrigued by the prospect of Windows 10 S? Or is it full fat Windows all the way for you? Drop us a line in the comments section below.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2003, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.

Trusted Reviews Logo

Sign up to our newsletter

Get the best of Trusted Reviews delivered right to your inbox.

This is a test error message with some extra words