Difference between IoT Core and IoT Enterprise

August 1st, 2019 by

Windows 10 IoT is an evolution/ upgrade of Windows Embedded; a previous Windows edition. Microsoft offers two version of Windows 10 IoT; IoT enterprise and IoT core.

IoT Enterprise

IoT enterprise is similar to Windows 10 enterprise only that it offers extra lock-down controls. With the extra lock-down controls, it becomes possible to trigger Windows to display one kiosk app. As such, Windows runs on the background but the additional services are made inaccessible to average users. If you have been to a check out kiosk when the check-in app has crashed and noticed Windows 10 in view, you have encountered IoT Enterprise. IoT Enterprise licenses are available in stores since Microsoft distributes its licenses to their resale partners and OEM agreements. Being a full Windows version, users enjoy all features that come with it. However, IoT enterprise does not run on ARM processors; this is the only con.


IoT Core

Unlike IoT enterprise, IoT core is a stripped down version where users do not enjoy all Windows shell features. The IoT core operating system only runs background processes and single UWP (Universal Windows Program) app. But, IoT core runs effectively on ARM processors. Therefore, it would be the ideal choice to run simple programs that do not require a lot of direct user interactions. Additionally, the ARM processor capability means that IoT core can be run on simple boards such as; Raspberry Pi. This makes IoT core the perfect choice for one off personal projects or quick prototypes mainly required by manufacturers. Microsoft went a step further to demonstrate the Raspberry Pi-powered robot that utilizes Windows IoT and interacts with holograms as well. The combination provides the required resources for downloading personal use IoT core using a free license.Also, IoT core on Minnow-board or Raspberry can be paired with sensors and other mechanisms such as; PIR sensors, temperature sensors, servos, and cameras for diverse use. Hence, Windows 10 can communicate gathered data with the sensors which is the main premise for the Internet of Things. IoT Core is excellent for solo programs, sensors and simple boards because it is designed to run without a graphical interface. However, it connects to a Windows 10 machine for feedback and programming.


The average user may not require IoT core but this does not mean that they will never encounter it. IoT core could be powering the food restaurant or kiosk you visit daily. In addition, it is the ideal option for people who find Linux complicated or time consuming.


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