Windows 10 has already been confirmed as a singular unifying operating system that will work across desktops, tablets and smartphones. However, Microsoft has revealed that the Operating System (OS) will be able to morph into a full-fledged desktop OS with “Continuum,” when the Windows Phone senses it.
With Continuum for phones, we believe any phone can be your PC,” said Joe Belfiore, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of the operating systems group, on Wednesday at the company’s annual developer conference in San Francisco.
Joe has essentially offered a way to carry our entire workstation in our pockets. Smartphones are getting ever powerful and already have hardware that will put last year’s desktop computers to shame. If they are able to run a complete and full-blown version of Windows 10, it could spell the end of desktop computers and may slash the sales of laptops and tablets as well.
It may appear as though Microsoft is unconcerned about the impact on sale of hardware, but instead is solely focused on building a holistic ecosystem of devices that run on a single OS and have a singular App Store. On the contrary, the Redmond-based company’s latest announcement might just help push the sale of tablets and ultra-books.
Continuum is a basically a software tool or an instructional sub-layer that senses how you are using the device running Windows 10 and then molds the user-interface accordingly. For example, Continuum will sense when you’re using Windows 10 with a mouse and keyboard attachment or when you’ve switched to a touch interface with finger- and pen-based inputs.
Accordingly, the user-interface will alter, allowing the user to be a lot more productive with a mouse-keyboard layout and enable the user to consume more content with a touch-based interface.
Those who have used Samsung’s Galaxy Note, will realize the dynamic alteration of the user-interface is quite similar to their device, when they whip out the stylus. However, Microsoft has extended the feature to a great extent, demonstrated Joe, during Microsoft’s Build 2015 keynote.
When Joe plugged his Windows Phone into a PC monitor, the PowerPoint App realigned to become a full-blown PC Application. Joe noted the company was able to offer this feature, “because it is in fact the same code that you would see for PowerPoint on a PC.” Essentially, any “app” when opened on the phone, Continuum switched them to PC-style apps when the device was docked.
For an operating system that is touted to work across myriad hardware platforms, Continuum seems to be an ideal component in Windows 10 which might finally allow us to carry our workstation in our pocket, provided it sports some pretty powerful internals.
[Image Credit | TechCrunch, WPD]