Published: Sat, May 13, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Ellis Neal

Microsoft Windows 10 Fall Creators Update Makes iOS, Android Operating Systems Better

Microsoft Windows 10 Fall Creators Update Makes iOS, Android Operating Systems Better

Aside from some new additions to the Windows Store and future VR headsets, Microsoft also detailed its next big feature update for Windows 10.

At their recent developer conference, Microsoft surprised everyone by announcing they're making iTunes available in their app store by the end of the year.

Created to ensure that "experiences flow seamlessly between Windows, iOS and Android devices, Fluent Design and Microsoft Graph will add a variety of new capabilities via the Fall Creators Update".

Some of the upcoming tools represent another step in Microsoft's attempt to catch up with two of its biggest rivals, Apple and Google.

The update would be optimal if Microsoft had a pervasive mobile operating system, but the USA technology giant saw Windows smartphones eclipsed by Apple and Android devices, the analyst noted. Both those companies have helped undercut the popularity of PCs running on Windows. Similarly, a feature called Timeline is created to let you jump back into files you were using a few hours or days ago as if you'd never left, regardless of the device. It's similar to what Apple already offers with Universal Clipboard in iPhones, iPads and Mac computers.

A companion Pick Up Where You Left Off feature will let you continue what you're doing on another device, much like Apple's Handoff feature.

Also in the works is the Microsoft Fluent Design system, aimed at helping developers create applications that work well across a range of devices and input types.

The Fall Creators Update will also bring new capabilities for mixed-reality experiences. A preview for early testers was released Thursday.

One scenario posed by Terry Myerson, executive vice president of the Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft, is the ability to resume a task from where the user left off after switching from a PC to a phone. Microsoft is also introducing a brand new design language called Fluent Design System, which was codenamed Project Neon. It can recognise people and objects in photos and videos, which means you can "anchor" text or other objects to them, and watch it follow the person or that object irrespective of camera movement. The equipment, to be made by Acer, will sell as a package for $399.

"A customer who pairs a Windows Mixed Reality headset with motion controllers will have a rich and immersive experience across creativity tools, productivity, games, and entertainment", Myerson said. That development will be particularly helpful for students using a streamlined version of Windows designed for classrooms.

That strategy never got off the ground, as few smartphone users comfortable with Google's Android and Apple's iOS considered the Windows Phone.

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