Microsoft’s Killing Off Original Windows 10 but the World’s Ready for This

#MicrosoftWindows #Windows10 – Microsoft’s Killing Off Original Windows 10 but the World’s Ready for This : Microsoft will stop releasing updates for the original version of Windows 10 in March this year, but the majority of computer users are already ready for this, according to statistics.

As we reported to you a few days ago, Microsoft will no longer update Windows 10 version 1507 (the original version released in July 2015) starting with March 26, as the company’s Windows as a Service approach forces the transition to the latest two Current Branch of Business (CBB) versions 60 days after installation media for the latest update is released.

In other words, once Microsoft rolls out installation media for the Anniversary Update, the company will only actively service Windows 10 November Update (version 1511) and the Anniversary Update (version 1607), with support for the original release (version 1507) to be pulled.

The launch of installation media is planned for January 26, which means that on March 26, the original Windows 10 version stops getting updates.

Almost nobody using Windows 10 version 1507

And although for organizations this deadline might not be good news by any means, statistics show that the majority of users have already updated, not including here enterprises that are enrolled in the Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB).

Statistics provided by in December by AdDuplex reveals that there were only 2.6 percent of users running Windows 10 version 1507, while only 10.4 percent of them were still on November Update.

The Anniversary Update was powering 86.3 percent of the Windows 10 systems, while Windows 10 Redstone 2 (Creators Update) builds were installed on 0.7 percent of the PCs – most of them, however, are consumers who are participating in the Windows Insider program.

In other words, the March 26 deadline shouldn’t impact too many Windows 10 customers, although there’s a possibility that some companies might have to speed up their upgrade policies to make sure their systems continue to be updated.

But in the end, the Windows 10 version fragmentation barely exists, with Microsoft doing quite a good job when it comes to moving users to the latest version of the operating system whenever it becomes available.

Source : Softpedia

Microsoft Windows 10 Creators Update May Bring Baked-In Ebook Store

#MicrosoftWindows #Windows10Creators – Microsoft Windows 10 Creators Update May Bring Baked-In Ebook Store : Microsoft is apparently working on building an ebook store into Windows 10, allowing users to purchase and read books in Microsoft Edge.

The new ebook store interface could become available with the Windows 10 Creators Update, aiming to make its “Universal Store” more appealing and useful.

The news comes from MSPoweruser, which was the first to report on the addition and offer screenshots of the upcoming Windows 10 ebook store.

Microsoft Windows 10 Ebook Store

“We were today able to get an early look at the new e-books store in an internal build of Windows 10 Mobile, but the feature is also going to be available for PCs and tablets running Windows 10,” reports the Microsoft-centric publication.

As MSPoweruser points out, news of an upcoming ebook store baked into Windows 10 is not all that surprising. Microsoft added EPUB support to its Edge browser last year, as part of its Windows 10 Creators Update test builds for Insiders, so it was already signaling the addition of ebooks.

While Microsoft has yet to make it official and detail just when the new ebooks store will hit Windows 10, the prospect is nonetheless exciting and could turn out to be a great asset particularly for the education market.

Microsoft has long been trying to better position Windows devices on the education market and compete against Chromebooks, and the addition of a Windows 10 ebook store could give it a good edge.

At the same time, adding ebook support to the Windows Store would give Microsoft another potential option to make money off Windows. The company currently monetizes its OS by allowing users to buy apps, music, games, movies and TV shows through the Windows Store.

According to MSPoweruser, buying ebooks would be just like purchasing an app or a game from the Windows Store. On the downside, it’s very likely that enjoying those ebooks would be possible only on Microsoft Edge and not on other browsers.

Ebooks On Microsoft Edge

Microsoft has been struggling to make its Edge browser more appealing than ever since it first launched it with Windows 10, but it’s still trailing rivals such as Chrome, Firefox and Opera.

The company has been aggressively pushing the Microsoft Edge browser, touting that it’s safer than Chrome and Firefox, claiming that it’s the best browser for battery life, and even pushing notifications prompting Chrome users to switch to Edge.

In this context, this move to make ebooks accessible only on Microsoft Edge could have two potential outcomes. In the first scenario, it could make Edge more appealing and drive adoption. In the second, it could make the ebooks store less appealing due to limited browser compatibility.

On the other hand, the Windows Store is just one storefront part of the Universal Store Microsoft has envisioned for its ecosystem. With its Universal Store, Microsoft wants to offer the transactions and digital licensing beyond Windows Store, reaching other Windows, Xbox, mobile, web, Office and MSN content, as well as the hardware, software and services sold in physical retail stores.

Microsoft aims to unify all of these storefronts to streamline the experience and make the Universal Store a one-stop-shop for more platforms.

The company is not commenting at this point, other than to mention that it regularly tests various features and functionality through its Windows Insider Program. That said, there’s no guarantee that the ebook store will actually make it to the Windows 10 Creators Update, but it remains to be seen.

Source : Techtimes

Microsoft Pondering Windows 10 Price Cut to Counter Chromebook Growth

#Microsoft #Windows10 – Microsoft Pondering Windows 10 Price Cut to Counter Chromebook Growth : Microsoft is currently pondering a possible licensing fee cut for Windows 10 manufacturers, as it’s looking into ways to counter the rapid growth of Chromebook, a new report reveals.

Chromebooks continue growing at a worrying rate for Microsoft, mostly because they run Google’s Chrome OS platform, which is offered completely free to OEMs, thus contributing to a lower price when they hit the shelves.

And while Chromebooks have mostly been low-budget models whose quality was sometime questionable, manufacturers keep investing in such products with more premium features, as it’s the case of Samsung.

As a result, Microsoft is exploring new ways to reduce the price of Windows 10 devices as well, and one way to achieve this is by cutting the licensing fee for OEMs.

Digitimes writes that Microsoft will lower Windows 10 licensing fees for devices with screens smaller than 14.1 inches, and an announcement in this regard should be made on March 1. The cut will be valid for devices launching with Windows 10 Creators Update and will also take into account the notebook type, the hardware, and the market where it’s supposed to sell.

Windows 10 with Bing?

Back in the days when Windows 8.1 was Microsoft’s newest operating system, the company was also offering a Bing-branded SKU to OEMs that featured Bing as the default search engine and MSN as the home page in exchange for a lower fee or even a completely free license.

At some point before the launch of Windows 10, there were rumors that a similar strategy was planned again, but a Windows 10 with Bing SKU never made it to the market.

While there are small chances to see this version going live now, Microsoft is clearly considering its options these days, as Chromebooks continue growing despite its massive investments in Windows 10.

The Windows 10 Creators Update is due in April, so expect some more information on how exactly Microsoft plans to tackle the growth of Chromebooks to emerge in the coming months.

Source : Softpedia

Details for Microsoft Windows 10 Creators Update to be Disclosed Soon

#Windows10 #Windows10CreatorsUpdate – Details for Microsoft Windows 10 Creators Update to be Disclosed Soon : Initially, the Redmond-based tech firm has targeted March as the release date of its Windows 10 Creators Update. However, sources reveal that the launching will be moved to April. Within this context, it is likely that new elements have been included.

With Dell, HP, Lenovo, Asus and Acer integrating Windows 10 as part of their virtual reality (VR) products, Microsoft will be introducing the holographic user interface into its software. The program is vital to Windows-supported VR headsets.

One noteworthy feature of the updated system is the Paint 3D design. The application has been incorporated into the operating protocols.

It should be known that a huge part of the Windows 10 Creators Update has been made to assist people who are working in industries where the 3D model plays a significant role. Microsoft has declared that the recent app is its most sophisticated procedure.

With the surface pen in place, individuals can create designs by drawing directly on the screen. This approach provides users the opportunity to make structures freely prior to sharing the designs online.

The 3D app has also extended its functional range with the inclusion of the PowerPoint. Presentations become more convenient since users are able to transfer the forms into the slides.

In addition, 3D animation images will get a far more detailed outlook. This is made possible by combining the 2D and the 3D contents.

For gamers, the Creators Update allows a vital link that will propel their experiences on the web. The Beam video sharing system is the significant component during the process.

Meanwhile, Microsoft has also installed a connective method that allows users to communicate with their contacts. Related to this is the Windows MyPeople application which makes it possible for people to share images and data directly without the need for a medium.

A key aspect associated with this feature is the intention of Microsoft to integrate communication services like emails, Skype and Xbox live into a single app. Moreover, the Redmond-based firm will also be presenting the Shoulder Taps procedure where people can use emoticons for quick messaging.

The Windows 10 Creators Update is actually a part of an enhancement approach codenamed Redstone 2 which was launched in October last year. It is rumored that the forthcoming software release, which has been dubbed as Redstone 3, will have graphical alterations under the Neon project.

Source : enstarz

Windows 10 Mobile build 15007: What's been fixed and what hasn't

#Windows10 #Windows10Mobile – Windows 10 Mobile build 15007: What’s been fixed and what hasn’t : Insiders with Windows 10 Mobile devices may have felt a bit left out of all the excitement lately – after all, the last Insider Preview for phones in the Fast ring came over a month ago, while PCs have had two Fast ring builds this week alone.

Today, though, Microsoft rolled out Windows 10 Insider Preview build 15007 for both PCs and phones, including a whole bunch of new features for both sets of devices, as well as some new features specifically for phones. But along with those additions, build 15007 also brings its share of fixes and known issues – you can find information on those for PCs here.

Let’s first take a look at the fixes for Windows 10 Mobile devices in this new build:

  • In response to your feedback, alarm sounds will start at a slightly higher volume level. (They will then ramp up to full volume, as before).
  • We fixed an issue Insiders with certain devices, such as the Lumia 950, may have experienced where their phone sometimes took an unexpectedly long time to show up after connecting to their PC.
  • We fixed an issue where System related notification toasts (e.g. Bluetooth, USB/Autoplay, etc.) didn’t work.
  • We’ve updated the experience when using Cortana to receive incoming SMS messages over Bluetooth to make it more reliable. To enable this feature if it is not already, open Cortana settings and make sure one of the following Bluetooth options is on: “Bluetooth and wired headsets” or “Bluetooth only”.
  • We fixed an issue where video recorded in portrait mode might not playback with the correct aspect ratio.
  • We fixed an issue on recent Insider builds resulting in the Skype Preview tile not updating with an alert badge when a new message had been received.
  • We fixed an issue where certain websites pinned to Start from Microsoft Edge when tapped would perform a web search rather than opening to that page.
  • We fixed an issue where the SIM Pin dialog would display truncated text in certain languages.
  • We fixed an issue that could result in the phone getting stuck at the Goodbye screen when rebooting if Bluetooth was enabled.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in the Outlook Calendar sometimes displaying the wrong date on its live tile after a new day has begun.
  • We fixed a bug that was preventing Notification Listener apps (like wearable apps) from accessing notifications on recent builds.

And before you install build 15007, make sure that you have a good look through the list of known issues – especially if you’re mad enough to install Fast ring builds on your primary, everyday handset (not recommended!!):

  • The Windows Hello greeting is missing from the lock screen. Showing the animation and user name is important for letting you know we have securely identified you. Of course, we also recognize the essential purpose of the Windows Hello feature is getting you to your Start screen without delay. We’re working hard to make sign-in as quick as possible across all Windows Hello scenarios.
  • AAD Identity Settings Sync: You may not see your Favorites or Reading List roam down in Microsoft Edge if you try to immediately open these tabs after opening Microsoft Edge. You can open Microsoft Edge, wait 30 seconds, and then open favorites and Reading List to see content.
  • AAD Identity Settings Sync: Microsoft Edge does not sync Reading List from PC to phone unless there is a restart.
  • AAD Identity Settings Sync: Microsoft Edge is syncing passwords on phone but not showing them in “saved passwords” in Microsoft Edge settings.
  • When you receive a new email notification and tap on it to open the message, it doesn’t open the Mail app or message.
  • New option to pause updates contains text referencing PC-only Windows Defender.
  • Insiders with certain devices, such as the Lumia 635 and 636, may not be able to manually change the brightness. The brightness will still automatically adjust if it is set to do so, so please use that for the time being while we investigate.
  • The ninja cat emoji display in two characters on the keyboard instead of the expected one.
  • Adding a new card / paying with an existing card will not work in Microsoft Wallet.

Since this is the first build for Windows 10 Mobile devices in six weeks, expectations will no doubt be high among Insiders. If you’re installing it today, let us know what you think of Insider Preview build 15007 in the comments below.

Source: Neowin

Windows 10 Creator Update News: Microsoft Chief Says 'Data Collection Reduced To Basic Level'

#Windows10 #Windows10Creator – Windows 10 Creator Update News: Microsoft Chief Says ‘Data Collection Reduced To Basic Level’ : Microsoft Windows 10 has been in the news for quite a long time now due to its security issues and privacy concerns in recent months. The company has responded to some of them but recently the Electronic Frontier Foundation has filed some allegation against the company. The company has accused the software maker of taking an unparalleled amount of private data from the user with Windows 10.

What Can Be Expected Further From Microsoft?

Microsoft has now been taking steps to make several changes in the upcoming Windows 10 Creators upgrade. They are trying to simplify the diagnostic data collection levels, so that reports can maintain on what kind of data is being sent to companies server. For now, the tech giant is planning to introduce three levels but in the new upgrade one can switch between basic and full data collection levels. “We’ve further reduced the data collected at the Basic level,” said Terry Myerson, Microsoft’s Windows and Devices Group Executive VP.

Also adding more to the upcoming Creators version Microsoft would add clearer options for disabling certain options like location, speech recognition, recommendations and relevant ads.

Microsoft’s Future Plans For Windows 10

Microsoft has also planned to introduce a new web based privacy dashboard. It would allow user to see any activity in their Microsoft account like location, search, browsing and Cortana data in a single view. The user can clear all the history location data from the new privacy dashboard which is available now. Furthermore, the company would be adding more features over time to the new windows upgrade.

As seen, the company has completely focused on fixing all the issues that the users are facing regarding the privacy matters and have promised to fix all the errors this year soon and provide a much better security focused product and would once again win over the Microsoft users around the globe.

Source : iTechpost

Microsoft announced new Windows 10 privacy features after investigation by Swiss regulators

#Microsoft #Windows10 – Microsoft announced new Windows 10 privacy features after investigation by Swiss regulators : Earlier this week, Microsoft announced new privacy tools for its users, including the launch of a web-based privacy dashboard, along with a new set-up experience for Windows 10, offering greater control for users over the data that is collected and shared with the company.

Microsoft said that its decision to introduce these new features was “based on [user] feedback”, but it appears that it was also influenced by concerns raised by Swiss regulators about its data collection in Windows 10. As Reuters reports, Microsoft had been under investigation since 2015 by Switzerland’s Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC), which said that “data processing in connection with Windows 10 did not conform in every respect with the [country’s] data protection legislation”.

Specifically, the FDPIC said that the default ‘Express settings’ option – presented on the ‘Get going fast’ page during the Windows 10 setup experience – activated extensive collection of users’ data. This included location data, browser and search history, keyboard inputs, and more – and all of this data was automatically sent to Microsoft without the user being made clearly aware.

Further concerns were raised over the transparency and clarity of information presented in some settings, particularly with regards to the type of data being collected, and for how long it would be stored.

Microsoft cooperated with the FDPIC’s investigation, and made a series of proposals to authorities to address their concerns. As a result of Microsoft’s proposals, and after the company agreed to adopt them with additional recommendations, the FDPIC said that there was “no need for court proceedings”, and confirmed that it had closed its investigation.

“The technical implementation of the modifications requested by the FDPIC will be carried out worldwide as part of the two Windows 10 software releases planned for 2017,” the FDPIC explained.

Microsoft said on Tuesday that its new OS setup experience will be introduced as part of the Windows 10 Creators Update, the first of its two major updates to the OS this year. Given the FDPIC’s statement, it seems that we can expect further privacy improvements in the second of those updates, currently known as Redstone 3, when it arrives in the second half of 2017.

Source: Reuters

Microsoft's Windows 10 Creators Update To Come With Privacy Control Changes To Address Criticism

#Microsoft #Windows10 – Microsoft’s Windows 10 Creators Update To Come With Privacy Control Changes To Address Criticism : Part of the reason some users avoided the Windows 10 update (to no avail) is the way Microsoft has been arbitrarily collecting tons of usage data. Critics have also mercilessly savaged Redmond for this and the company seemed to have noted all the backlash.

According to Microsoft, the upcoming Creators Update will include changes to the Windows 10 privacy controls.

Windows 10 Telemetry

When the Windows 10 was released, Microsoft outfitted it with a mechanism that can collect what the company calls as diagnostic information or telemetry. This is currently in effect.

While observers believe that data collection practice is not entirely intrusive or illegal, the excessive nature practiced in Windows 10 has alarmed users, consumer groups, and even regulatory agencies.

The latest criticism coming from the Electronic Frontier Foundation effectively summed up all the stakeholders’ concerns.

“While users can disable some of these settings, it is not a guarantee that your computer will stop talking to Microsoft’s servers,” EFF wrote. “A significant issue is the telemetry data the company receives. While Microsoft insists that it aggregates and anonymizes this data, it hasn’t explained just how it does so.”

EFF further attacked Microsoft’s argument that it will not be able to provide security for users who are opting to use the lowest level of usage data collection. It pointed out that such policy is effectively creating a platform where consumers are given no other choice.

New Data Collection Levels, Privacy Controls

The Creators Update will purportedly simplify the data collection levels so that users will understand what information are sent to Microsoft.

This largely came as the diagnostic data collection levels have been whittled down from three to two, Basic and Full.

“We’ve further reduced the data collected at the Basic level. This includes data that is vital to the operation of Windows,” Microsoft explained in a statement.

Said data are also used by the company to keep Windows and apps secure, up-to-date, and running properly. The Basic option also still includes error reporting.

Privacy Dashboard

Microsoft has also introduced the so-called web-based privacy dashboard. It is now accessible through a user’s Microsoft account, where he or she can delete browser and search history, along with other data that document interactions with any of its devices, applications, and services such as the Xbox, Skype, and Office apps.

Some sectors will still probably treat the latest Microsoft pronouncement with a grain of salt. Previously, choices and options it embedded in the system have been deceptive. For, instance, clicking the X in the window prompting an update was interpreted as consent rather than a rejection.

Source : techtimes

Windows 10 Build 15002 Now Available for Download

#Windows10 #WindowsUpdate – Windows 10 Build 15002 Now Available for Download : Windows 10 build 15002 got leaked a few days ago, and now Microsoft is making it available for insiders enrolled in the Fast ring as well.

Build 15002 is one of the most important releases so far and comes with a lot of changes, many of which we’ve already spotted in the last couple of builds that got leaked.

For example, there are several Microsoft Edge browser updates, including a new tab preview bar and options to set tabs aside, both of which were part of build 14997 that was leaked in December. There is also a jump list for Microsoft Edge to quickly open a new window or an InPrivate window, but also support for web payments and Flash click-to-run behavior.

Windows 10 build 15002 also features tile folders in Start, which should come in super handy to those who use a lot of universal apps. Folders work in a similar way to those on Windows phones, and you can easily organize them using drag and drop.

The same build introduces an updated share UI, which is likely to cause some controversy, and now includes a new flyout that changes based on your usage.

Microsoft also improves high DPI support for desktop apps and offers a smoother window resize to offer a similar experience for both Win32 programs and universal apps.

So many more improvements

Connecting to VPN is also faster now thanks to an improved flyout, and the taskbar also includes a Lunar Calendar for Chinese users.

There are plenty of Cortana improvements as well, including a new WIN + C keyboard shortcut for invoking the digital assistant, more recurrence options for reminders, as well as suggested commands for apps that support this feature.

Accessibility and Windows Defender have also been improved with this build, and so has been the Settings app, which now features more information for each screen.

There’s also the eagerly-anticipated Lower Blue Light, which automatically lowers the amount of blue light from your PC at night to make it easier to use without daylight.

There are many other improvements in this build and it is definitely worth a try, so go ahead and get it right now if you’re in the Fast ring to see if it was worth the wait.

Source : Softpedia

Microsoft Is Bringing Back Part of Aero Glass in Windows 10

#Microsoft #Windows10 – Microsoft Is Bringing Back Part of Aero Glass in Windows 10 : Last week, it emerged that Microsoft was planning a series of improvements to the Windows 10 user interface, including a blur effect for universal apps that would be first integrated into Redmond’s own apps and then available for the rest of the developers as well.

Early previews already look good and confirm that Windows’ user interface is evolving, but at the same time, it’s more interesting to note that some of the improvements that the company is planning for future Windows OS updates is based on requests from the user community.

The blur visual effect was an essential feature of Aero Glass in Windows 7 and its removal was highly controversial in Windows 8, which was the first operating system that marked Microsoft’s migration towards a flat user interface.

But with future Windows 10 updates, Microsoft will bring back one of the features that users liked the most in older versions of the operating system and which continues to be highly requested these days.

Thousands of votes for bringing back Aero in modern Windows

Back in the days when UserVoice was the feedback platform of choice for Windows, a suggestion to bring back Aero Glass had more than 43,000 votes from users who wanted this feature to return in Windows 8. The request gained more votes with the release of Windows 10, and continues to be popular these days.

In the Feedback Hub alone, there are tens of requests for Aero effects in Windows 10, including the blur effect, with Microsoft providing the following answer:

“Thanks for your enthusiasm for Aero Glass. As we mentioned in the Made by You article about Shell improvements, as a result of your feedback many of our features now support transparency. This can be enabled by turning on Settings > Personalization > Colors > ‘Make Start, taskbar, and action center transparent’.  If you would like to see this transparency light up for more features and have a preference, please log or +1 requests feedback for the specific feature you’d like to see support it.”

For what it’s worth, the blur effect in Windows 10 is projected to see daylight with the release of the Redstone 3 update in the fall, but since work on this is still in its early days, a lot could change in the meantime, so just don’t hold your breath waiting for this feature.

Source : Softpedia