During Microsoft’s BUILD 2016 conference, the company announced that Windows 10 will receive a new, free update this summer called Anniversary Update. This “upgrade” will be rolled out to PCs, tablets, smartphones, the Xbox One console, Microsoft HoloLens, and Internet of Things (IoT) devices. It will make its debut on August 2, just days after Windows 10 celebrates its first birthday and after Microsoft pulls the plug on its free Windows 10 upgrade program.
So what’s in this Anniversary Update? If you missed the conference and the related news, we’ve rounded up what Microsoft officially announced thus far, which spans Cortana, Microsoft Edge, the Windows Store, and more. Some of the update’s ingredients weren’t announced during the initial keynote, so we’ll briefly touch base on the features found in the Windows 10 Anniversary SDK as well.
Previous rumors suggested that Microsoft would make Windows 10 more friendly to pen users with touch screens, and the company is delivering just that with additional support for Windows Ink. While this feature is already provided in first-party apps like Microsoft Edge, Office, and Maps, developers will be able to inject this tool within their app solutions by adding as little as two lines of code. Thus, end-users will have the ability to jot notes directly onto the screen, scribble a little doodle to share with friends, and more by using a supported digital pen stylus for Windows 10.
Windows Ink will offer cool tools like an eraser, pen tips, and a virtual ruler, the latter of which allows users to draw straight lines right on the screen. In Maps, you can draw a line directly onto the screen and the app will determine the actual distance. It will also convert that line into an actual path that will stay glued to the landscape when the terrain is viewed in 3D. Windows Ink can even delete whole paragraphs of text in Word and straighten crooked text highlighting. Adobe Illustrator CC will include support for this expanded feature.
Microsoft’s built-in personal assistant for Windows 10 will receive a big upgrade in the intelligence department. Cortana will provide suggestions throughout the day based on your actions and stored information, such as suggesting to order lunch at noon. Cortana will also be made available on the lock screen so that users can seek out information and ask questions without having to unlock the PC or device. For example, during the BUILD 2016 keynote, Cortana was asked about the amount of time it would take to reach Sausalito, which was immediately answered right on the lock screen.
Cortana will also be added to Skype, located in the upper-right-hand corner of the app. In a demonstration during BUILD 2016, Cortana private messaged the demo presenter to find out if it was okay to provide her address to a third-party supplier who was trying to ship a batch of cupcakes. This user was also capable of reserving a block of space for a trip on the Calendar app thanks to Cortana support within Skype. Afterwards, the virtual assistant suggested a visit to a friend while traveling to Dublin based on previous Skype chats.
The Windows Hello service is already built into Windows 10, allowing users to log into the platform with a their face, retina, or fingerprint, throwing out the need for a pesky password or PIN number. This is especially handy in enterprise environments where data is sensitive and passwords aren’t the best security to utilize. With the Windows 10 Anniversary Edition update, that security measure extends out to Windows 10 apps and supporting websites loaded up in the Windows Edge browser.
On the enterprise front, Anniversary Update will add the Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection service for detecting, investigating, and responding to malicious attacks on networks. Windows Information Protection will be added in the update too, a service that will separate personal data from business data no matter where the Windows 10 device goes.
With Anniversary Update, Xbox One console owners will see Cortana finally crashing the gaming scene, helping players find new games, offer tips and tricks, start a party, check up on friends, and more. According to Microsoft, Xbox One owners will be able to simply say “Hey Cortana, Xbox On” to simply activate the console.
Extensions are coming to Windows 10’s fresh new browser, and will be offered within the Windows Store once Anniversary Update goes live. Microsoft Translator, Reddit Enhancement Suite, and Mouse Gestures are already supported in preview builds offered in the Insider Program, but the likes of AdBlock, AdBlock Plus, Amazon (Assistant), Evernote, LastPass, and Pinterest (Pin It Button) are also slated to provide extensions.
According to Microsoft, Edge will offer even more power-saving improvements than before. The browser will consume less memory and require fewer CPU cycles, meaning your Windows 10 device will have more available resources for the content customers want to consume. The browser even lasts three hours longer than Google Chrome in recent tests conducted by Microsoft, which caused an online war of words between the company and Opera Software.
More info: http://www.digitaltrends.com