How to Determine if a Windows 10 IoT Enterprise License Is Right for Your Project

IoT Licensing

When you’re building an IoT solution, it’s important to consider what is included in your operating system license. For instance, does it cover internal devices in your company, or only apply to individual physical devices? What applications are included? Can the license be resold? The ideal license will look different depending on your business, but if you’re looking for an operating system for fixed-purpose IoT devices, the Windows 10 IoT Enterprise license is a good choice for you.

We understand that deciding on the right operating system license is an important decision. We will highlight several aspects to consider during the buying process, as well as why Windows 10 IoT Enterprise is the best fit. For more insights, explore how Bsquare can help you get started with Windows 10 IoT.

Looking for information about the upcoming Windows 10 IoT Enterprise 2021 LTSC release, also known as vNext? We’re tracking the latest.

1. Look for a license that supports device resales

The resale value of an operating system is a vital aspect of licensing, especially as not all operating systems provide the ability to resell devices. For example, the Windows 10 Enterprise license applies to internal use within a specific business, meaning it cannot be resold to entities outside the business. On the other hand, the Windows 10 IoT Enterprise operating system is licensed to specific physical devices, which means each device can be resold. This is especially helpful for businesses manufacturing fixed-purpose IoT devices intended for external sale.

2. Find a license that includes robust applications

When it comes to deciding which license is best for your business, you should consider everything you might need from an operating system, including:

  • Ability to connect to older devices
  • Familiar applications for easy deployment
  • Built-in security tools

A bare-bones operating system license might have a lower initial price, but if you need to augment it with additional licenses to ensure your devices work, it’s probably not worth it. One thing that sets Windows 10 IoT Enterprise apart is the fact it’s a complete platform. Because the operating system comes with so many applications and tools included —as well as integration with Azure IoT—there’s no need for you to worry about finding and licensing additional solutions. This also allows you to scale your business with confidence.

That said, even the best license is only as good as the operating system it supports. Here are a few key aspects of the operating system itself that are also worth considering:

Ease of deployment

One aspect you should consider when finding an operating system for your product is how easy it is to set up on your devices. If you’re looking to accelerate this process, it’s important to factor in how much effort it will take to deploy a new operating system.

Because Windows 10 IoT Enterprise comes equipped with all the same Windows applications as Windows 10 Enterprise, you can create solutions faster as you work with familiar applications, tools, and frameworks. By design, Windows 10 IoT Enterprise is also integrated with Azure IoT, so you can quickly harness the power of the intelligent cloud. And Windows 10 IoT Enterprise is designed to be compatible with a variety of devices, making it easy to deploy.

Available security features

Whether the devices you’re trying to secure are mission-critical or basic, advanced security and lockdown features are important aspects of your operating system. Because security is an ongoing issue, you should be prepared not only to build devices on a strong security foundation, but also provide up-to-date support that changes alongside potential threats. With Windows 10 IoT Enterprise, you can deploy embedded IoT devices with greater confidence, knowing you’re equipped with many enterprise-level security features.

If you’re interested in the specific security features included in the operating system—like Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection, Unified Write Filter (UWF), AppLocker, and Device and Credential Guard—explore  Windows 10 IoT Enterprise security.

Device customization and advanced configuration

We know that not all businesses have the same needs or priorities. In fact, your priorities might even change down the line, which is why it’s important to invest in an operating system that can be customized. With Windows 10 IoT Enterprise, you can build fixed-purpose devices that support enterprise-grade IoT solutions and deliver exactly what you need through advanced embedded device configuration capabilities. Because it runs on the same CPUs as Windows 10 Enterprise, you can tailor your hardware to your needs with a broad range of supported devices.

With the power to enact advanced configuration, you don’t have to make compromises or purchase license keys for additional solutions. By avoiding the need to search—and pay—for another solution, you can save your business valuable time and money.

3. Choose a license with a long-term support option

Finally, technology is always evolving, so support options available for keeping systems up to date can be a useful aspect of your operating system. Whether you want long- or short-term support, the Windows 10 IoT Enterprise license offers flexible support solutions to fit your needs.

Windows 10 IoT Enterprise comes with a 10-year support cycle, including a minimum of five years of Mainstream Support followed by five years of Extended Support. Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) also provides optional releases every 2-3 years. Alternatively, there is support for the Semi-Annual Channel (SAC), which provides 18 months of support and non-security fixes, as well as feature releases twice a year. Visit Microsoft to get an in-depth look at various Windows support lifecycles.

Next steps for getting started with a Windows 10 IoT Enterprise license

When it comes to an operating system for fixed-purpose IoT devices, Windows 10 IoT Enterprise provides a fast, safe, and smart solution that you can scale to fit your exact needs.

Interested in learning more about a Windows 10 IoT Enterprise license or how your business can implement it? As a Microsoft IoT partner, we can answer your licensing questions and help you craft a fixed-purpose IoT strategy tailor-made for your business. Contact an experienced advisor to learn more.