After months of promises, Microsoft has finally announced that the latest major update of Windows 10 will be rolled out starting April 11.
The update has been christened the Creators Update – thanks to its emphasis on creativity and creators – and will be available for free to the hundreds of millions of computers running on the latest generation of the 30-year-old Windows line of operating systems.
Microsoft announced the news on a blog post published on March 29, elucidating on what the update entailed and giving a sneak peak of some of the features.
“We designed Windows 10 to rouse the creator in all of us,” reads the blog post. “To us that means that everybody has the power to dream big, whether that means starting a company, inventing a product, developing a lesson plan, broadcasting or developing games, or visualizing a whole new world in Minecraft or mixed reality.”
Seemingly, Bill Gates and co have shifted their focus to games, virtual reality, and mixed reality – plausibly in response to the overwhelming augmentation of the said spaces in the past couple of years.
Some of the features highlighted in the blog include increased access to 3D tools by enabling the creation of 3D objects using the Paint app, which has been dubbed Paint 3D in the update.
Windows has expressed its desire to stay in sync with the 3D industry, which they have projected to have grown by at least 62% by 2020.
In regards gaming, the tech giant has – besides refining Windows to eliminate slowness and lagging – introduced Beam, which will enable gamers using Windows 10 and the Xbox One console to interact with community and stream gameplay in real time without additional log-ins.
Also, screen time limits parental controls have been extended across both Xbox One and Windows 10, and a functionality to generate weekly reviews of gaming and computer activity has been introduced.
The Edge browser too has seen some improvements, with Microsoft hyping it as the most companionable browser for Windows 10, and even a better battery saver than Google Chrome.
The blog shreds Chrome further by claiming that Edge blocks 13% more malware and 9% more phishing sites, and offers 1.5 more hours streaming than Chrome.
What’s more, the browser will allow users to play Netflix videos and in 4K Ultra HD resolution.
Finally, there is the Windows Hello feature that will allow users to pair their PC with their iPhone, Windows Phone, or Android smartphone and have the computer or tablet automatically lock itself once the paired smartphone is moved away.
According to Windows General Manager Aaron Woodman, who spoke to Techcrunch early last month, Creators Update is an addendum into a supposed recent effort to take Microsoft and Windows back to their roots.
He views Windows Mixed Reality (formerly Windows Holographic), the new gaming capabilities, and the Edge browser update as the major highlights of the OS update.
It is evident that Windows isn’t the choice mobile operating system in a market filled with user-friendly iOS and Android devices, but its market share in the desktop PC market worldwide still remains at a staggering 90 percent.
What’s perhaps worrying the company’s management is the fact that more than half of Windows users are still using Windows 7, an almost 8-year old release.
The company had initially offered all Windows 7 and 8.1 users free Windows 10 upgrades, raising the percentage of desktops worldwide running on Windows ten to an impressive 25.
Regardless of the success, however, the company is seeking to consolidate its status as the market leader by going ahead of its rivals with usable upgrades on its applications and increasing penetration in the West.
It is worth noting that just because the roll-out is scheduled to start on April 11 doesn’t mean that every user will receive it then.
Past Windows 10 roll outs have taken up to months to reach users, and this should be a point to bear in mind if you are pining for the update.