UPDATED: Windows 10 Creators Update is now out for everyone to download but what does it bring? Silicon checks out
After developers got their hands on the software development kit (SDK) for its Windows 10 Creators Update last week, Microsoft is rolling out the update to users around the world.
Windows 10 Creators Update brings a wide-range of nips and tucks to the operating system, along with news features such as faster app downloads, integration with third-party services, and new ways for apps to connect to Cortana.
Full roll out of the Creators Update, the third major update for Windows 10, will begin April 11 and will target the 400 million users of Microsoft’s most- recent operating system.
We have already discussed some of the new features the Creators Update will usher in, but Microsoft invited Silicon to take a closer look at the next and consumer-focused version of Windows 10 ahead of its launch.
To the Edge
Most significantly for enterprise users, Microsoft is has tweaked the Windows 10 native Edge browser, adding the ability to better manage tabs via a drop down bar equipped with thumbnails to make navigating multiple browser tabs an easier process.
Microsoft also championed better security for Edge in defending against phishing attacks and malware, as well as more support for third-party browser extensions and improved Cortana virtual assistant capabilities.
The Creators Update also ushers in a simplified way for users to control their privacy, from selecting what data they share with Microsoft, as well as display more information around the security and health of a user’s computer.
“We’re making changes by simplifying the privacy settings themselves and improving the way we present them to you. The Creators Update introduces a new set up experience for you to choose the settings that are right for you, simplifies Diagnostic data collection from three levels to two: Basic and Full, and further reduces the data collected at the Basic level,” said Microsoft.
Microsoft also outlined how it is adding more capabilities to its Windows Ink feature designed to work on touchscreens with the Redmond company’s Surface Pen stylus. This includes navigation of the new Paint 3D app, annotations on photos and videos, and interactions with the Edge browser.
But one of the most interesting new capabilities, ideal for arranging meetings in news places, is the ability to annotate and draw lines within the Windows 10 Maps app to easily convey information to anyone the map has been shared with and plot routes by drawing on a map, where the app will intelligently calculate the distance even if the route is not a known one.
Microsoft’s Xbox gaming app has also been more tightly integrated into Windows 10, with it now offering a ‘Game Mode’ which ensures background tasks and operations not needed for the gaming task at hand are shut down to ensure maximum performance is directed at the gaming experience.
While this may not be an enterprise feature, it shows there scope for games developers to tap into more features and capabilities being baked into Windows 10 via the Creators Update.
Windows has always been a platform for others to build upon or run applications from. But with the Creators Update, Microsoft is championing this position more and more.
With new Edge, Windows Ink, security and gaming features, Windows 10 is offering a more featured operating system with open application programming interfaces (APIs) that developers can tap into to create their own feature rich Windows 10 apps.
The road to Windows 10 may not have always been the smoothest, but the Creators Update is ushering in a versions of Windows 10 that appears to encapsulate Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s vision of empowering users with data and the tools they need to succeed in work and play.