Windows 365 lets you use the Windows operating system from any device, anywhere

Windows 365 lets you use the Windows operating system from any device, anywhere
Microsoft Windows 365Microsoft
  • Microsoft has announced Windows 365, aimed at organisations of all sizes.
  • It will allow users to access Windows 10 – or Windows 11 later this year – from all kinds of devices, including Android, Mac, iPad or Linux.
  • Users will be able to stream the Windows operating system and continue where they left off on the previous device.
Cloud computing has existed for a while now, but Microsoft has given it a new twist by allowing you to stream Windows 11 from any device, anywhere. The company announced the launch of Windows 365 at its Inspire conference for partners.

Making the announcement, Satya Nadella, chairman and chief executive officer of Microsoft, said, “With Windows 365, we’re creating a new category: the Cloud PC. Just like applications were brought to the cloud with SaaS, we are now bringing the operating system to the cloud, providing organizations with greater flexibility and a secure way to empower their workforce to be more productive and connected, regardless of location.”

Put simply, Windows 365 will allow you to access Windows 10 – or Windows 11, when it becomes available – right inside your web browser. While virtualization and remote desktop have existed for a long time now, this is the first full-fledged first-party offering.

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Windows 365 lets you use the Windows operating system from any device, anywhere
Microsoft Windows 365Microsoft

Windows 365 can be accessed from an Android device, Mac, iPad or even Linux. All you will need is a modern browser or an app. Users will be able to access their data, apps, tools and other features that would normally be available on a desktop or a laptop running the Windows operating system.

Given the fact that the operating system is located in the cloud, you will be able to enjoy the same experience regardless of the browser or device you are accessing Windows 365 from.

For clarity, Microsoft currently offers Azure Virtual Desktop that lets you access the Windows operating system from the cloud – aimed at enterprise customers – but Windows 365 is designed to not require dedicated IT support.

How does this benefit organisations?

The most apparent benefit of Windows 365 is that it won’t require organisations – and their IT departments – to maintain dedicated teams to manage hardware and the issues arising out of it. This eliminates the maintenance cost and the manpower expenses incurred in the process.

IT admins will still be able to deploy Windows and tools that they need in the same way it is done for physical computers, offering them the same level of control.

“Windows 365 is really going to make a huge difference for organisations that wanted to try virtualisation for various reasons but could not — maybe it was too costly, too complex or they didn't have the expertise in house to do it,” said Wangui McKlevey, General Manager of Microsoft 365.

With the COVID-19 pandemic acting as a catalyst for the adoption of remote work, Windows 365 will allow IT admins to retain control over the hardware and employees will not have to worry about troubleshooting or making space for computers in their homes. All they will need is a monitor, at most, along with a keyboard and a mouse.

Windows 365 availability and pricing

Windows 365 will be available to organisations of all sizes starting August 2. It will come in two variants – Business and Enterprise.

Microsoft is yet to announce the pricing details, though.


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