It seems that Microsoft is finally admitting defeat in its futile battle against Android and iOS for dominance of the mobile operating system market. The tech giant just recently released a new frequently asked questions (FAQ) page, informing Windows 10 Mobile users that they have until December 10, 2019 to receive security patches, software updates and free support from Microsoft.
Third parties and paid support programs may still provide support beyond the aforementioned date, but Microsoft itself will not publicly provide updates and patches for Windows 10 Mobile.
If you own a Lumia 640 or 640 XL, Window 10 Mobile version 1703 was the last supported version and will reach end of support on June 11, 2019. Other devices that are eligible for Windows 10 Mobile, version 1709 will receive support until the end date.
After the end of support date on December 10, creation of device backups for settings and applications will continue for three months, or until March 10, 2020. Some services such as photo uploads and restoring devices from backups may continue to work for a year after the end of support date.
So what does this mean for users of Windows 10 Mobile?
Microsoft suggests that users move to an Android or iOS device. Windows 10 Mobile devices will still continue working after December 10, 2019, but will no longer receive updates and patches, making those devices vulnerable to viruses and malware.
Microsoft previously ended support for Windows Phone 8.1 on July 11, 2017, so the impending demise of Windows 10 Mobile is not that all surprising. The software giant is now focusing its efforts on developing apps and services for Android and iOS devices, which is more profitable than maintaining a mobile OS that has less than 1% share of the market.