Last week at Microsoft's Inspire worldwide partner conference, company executives gave resellers and OEMs updated guidance around how best to sell Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 S devices.
"Windows 10 Pro means business," as one marketing manager told show attendees. This is the variant of Windows 10 that Microsoft suggests its PC maker partners bundle on premium devices.
For its fiscal 2018, which kicked off on July 1, Microsoft is advising its reseller partners to think just beyond the operating system. Partners should try to upsell business users on Microsoft 365 Business, which bundles together Windows 10, Office 365 Business Premium, data protection, and administration/management controls, officials said.
The edition of Windows 10 that is included in Microsoft 365 Business is called "Windows 10 Business." There was some speculation earlier this year that Windows 10 Business might be a entirely new version of Windows 10 coming some time this year, but this is not the case.
Windows 10 Business -- which only is available as an integrated part of Microsoft 365 Business -- includes everything in Win 10 Pro plus Windows Defender Security Controls, Windows AutoPilot, as well as hooks for Automatic Office apps deployment, explained company officials in an Inspire session (the recorded version of which is available here).
Microsoft is advising partners to "light up services" rather than just sell Windows 10 Pro devices. Premium devices, premium experiences are the watchwords.
Microsoft's positioning around Windows 10 S also got a refresh.
Windows 10 S is the flavor of Windows 10 that ships preloaded on Microsoft's new Surface Laptops, and soon, on other PC-maker devices. It is locked down so it can only run Windows Store apps, in the name of security and performance. It can be upgraded to Windows 10 Pro for free this year and for $49 for non-education users starting next year.
At Inspire, Microsoft officials described Windows 10 S as a "mode" of Windows 10 that runs on top of Windows 10 Pro.