New updates for Windows Ink, Cortana, Xbox, and more…
The Windows 10 Anniversary Update, launched August 2nd, is currently taking the world by storm. With advanced updates in security, productivity, and entertainment features, Windows 10 is proving to be the best Windows yet.
Windows Ink* has improved the capabilities of the Microsoft Surface Book stylus. With the Windows 10 Anniversary Update you can now write on your Windows 10 device just by clicking the top of your pen. You can turn actions into reminders by hand-writing notes. If you write a note, such as ‘Call Mum tomorrow,’ you can highlight the word ‘tomorrow’ and add it to your calendar. Then, when the day comes, Cortana** clocks on and speaks up, just so you won’t forget anything.
What’s new with Windows Ink?
- Quickly and easily take a note, sketch on a screenshot, or draw an idea
- Use Smart Sticky Notes to help you remember common tasks, such as flight times or offering directions using Maps
- Use Key apps with ink-specific features; including handwriting in Office, ink annotations in Microsoft Edge, or drawing custom routes in Maps
Additional Security Features
The new Windows 10 Anniversary Update has advanced security features to ensure your device is protected at all times, from Windows Hello, to Windows Defender.
Windows Hello works to unlock your device with a built-in iris reader. If the iris reader doesn’t recognise you, it simply tells you that you’re not recognised and doesn’t let you into the device.
With the Anniversary Update, Windows Hello is now available for use with apps and websites, enabling you to sign into websites quicker and more securely. Websites and apps will no longer ask for passwords, making it harder for hackers to get into your device and online accounts.
Windows Defender is the free anti-malware service from Windows. With Windows 10 there’s option to automatically schedule periodic quick scans of your PC, as well as offering notifications and summaries when scans are complete and threats are found. Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection (WDATP) detects, investigates, and responds to advanced malicious attacks on networks by providing a more comprehensive threat detection and action. Windows says that this service is informed by the world’s largest array of sensors and expert advanced threat protection, including a team of security researchers at Microsoft leveraging in-house and security partner intelligence.
The Windows 10 Anniversary Update also comes equipped with Windows Information Protection, to help protect users from data leaks. Formerly known as ‘enterprise data protection,’ Windows Information Protection allows you to separate personal information from business information, keeping your data safe wherever it goes.
Increased Power Efficiency & Accessibility with Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Edge is the Windows 10 browser. The Windows 10 Anniversary update comes with new extensions, including AdBlock and AdBlock Plus, LastPass, Microsoft Translate, and more. Through the Windows Store, you can customise your Microsoft Edge browser how you want to.
The Anniversary Update is designed to consume less memory, provide more power-saving improvements, and minimize the impact of background activity and peripheral content. Webpage structure and content is now exposed more clearly, with the visual presentation of web pages improved for better viewing. Also, form entry when using keyboard navigation and screen readers has improved, making the browsing experience better for people of all different abilities.
More Productive Cortana
With the Anniversary Update, Cortana** will be available above your lock screen so you can ask Cortana to do things without unlocking your device; perfect for playing music or setting reminders. Cortana can also save and recall key information across your devices, from birthdays, to where you’ve parked your car. You can also add photos to make your reminders visual.
New Cortana updates in Windows Ink (see ‘Windows Ink’ above) makes hand-written notes more personal. Cortana, your personal assistant, makes sure you don’t forget anything in your calendar. She also works well with Xbox (see below ‘Gaming with Windows 10′).
Gaming with Windows 10
According to the Windows Team, there’s been over 19 billion hours of gameplay on Windows 10.
It’s a common notion amongst gamers that experiences differ from PC, to console, to mobile. But Microsoft has changed certain features of Xbox (including the introduction of the new XboxOne), the Xbox app, and Windows 10 for more continuity for players. You will also see changes in Xbox Live with the Anniversary Update, for better connectivity to your device and to your friends.
Xbox One & Windows 10:
- ‘Xbox Play Anywhere’ games will be offered within the new unified Windows Store on both Windows 10 and Xbox One. You’ll be able to find the content you want faster and purchase game and app bundles, pre-orders, pre-downloads and subscriptions such as Xbox Live Gold.
- On Xbox One, gamers will be able to use Cortana commands to find great new games, see what your friends are up to, do common tasks and turn on your Xbox One by saying “Hey Cortana, Xbox On”.
- Top fan requested features for Xbox One, such as Language Region Independence (allowing gamers to choose any supported language, regardless of their location) and support for background music, will come with the Anniversary Update.
With Cortana now available on Xbox One (US & UK), gamers can expect more from voice commands; there’s greater accuracy with natural language and text dictation. You can also talk to Cortana through a headset and Kinect.
If you already have Windows 10 pre-installed, the Windows 10 Anniversary Update should be free! If not, you can always purchase Windows 10 here and get your Anniversary Update after installation!
*Hardware requirements apply.
**Cortana available in select markets.