The rumors have turned out to be true and the student-focused edition of Windows 11 has been officially announced by the name of Windows 11 SE. The approach is similar to what we initially expected from the now-defunct Windows 10X OS that was intended for dual-screen devices like the Surface Neo.
Microsoft revealed during its event that Windows 11 SE will power low-cost laptops catering to the K-8 classrooms putting it directly in competition with Google Chromebooks. Moving one step further, the company has also announced the new Surface Laptop SE that will run the lightweight operating system.
This also means that Windows 11 SE will not be available for general users. However, in addition to Microsoft Store apps, it will offer support for traditional apps like Google Chrome and Zoom. In terms of the overall UI and appearance, the OS doesn’t feel much different from the regular Windows 11 we are running on our supported devices.
With that said, there are now three education-focused editions of Windows: Windows 11 SE, Windows 11 Education, and Windows 11 Pro Education. Here, SE takes the cloud-first approach and it will leverage online services as its priority.
Speaking of the Surface Laptop SE, it will come at a price tag of $249 making it the cheap device in the Surface computer lineup. The low-cost machine will pack an Intel Celeron CPU, 64GB eMMC storage, 4GB RAM, and an 11-inch 1366 x 768 display. It will also have a 720p HD webcam, stereo speakers, and up to 16 hours of battery life.
Not just Surface, there will be Windows 11 SE laptops from leading OEMs, including Acer, ASUS, Dell, Dynabook, Fujitsu, HP, JK-IP, Lenovo, etc. Most of these devices will be up for grabs later this year and in 2022, Microsoft said.