It's been a while since any exciting news has come up about Windows 10. Since the Anniversary Update was released in August, Microsoft has only issued a few minor updates. But that wasn't surprising. Back in August Microsoft also announced that major updates were being put on hold until 2017.
The good news is, 2017 is almost here, and we're finally hearing rumors about Windows 10 updates again.
In a recent blog post, Dona Sarkar (a Windows software engineer) teased Windows fans with some of the upcoming features.
The update is being labeled as "Build 14986," and it looks like improvements for Cortana were a big focus for the developers. Here's a quick breakdown of everything you can expect to see soon.
1. Cortana upgrades
Cortana has rivaled Siri as a virtual assistant, but it's still just now catching on. And with these new improvements, who knows? Maybe Siri will have finally met its match. Build 14986 will include the following upgrades to Cortana:
- More control through voice commands: With this change, Cortana will let you turn your computer on and off using voice commands. You can also restart, lock or tell your device to sleep. And, when it's time to turn the volume up on a song or video, just ask Cortana to help you out.
- Better music control: Along those same lines, Cortana is also going to be better in helping you find and play the music you're in the mood for. At least, if you'd like to listen on iHeartRadio or TuneIn Radio. Just say "Play Michael Jackson's 'Billie Jean' on iHeartRadio," and soon, you'll be dancing along to the beat. You can also use commands such as Play NPR Hourly News on TuneIn; Play jazz music on TuneIn; Play 90.3 on iHeartRadio, etc. You can also ask Cortana to help you identify unknown songs by asking, "What's playing?"
- Full screen when idle: If you haven't used your computer in a little while, it might not seem like Cortana is listening. As long as your computer isn't locked, when you say, "Hey Cortana," you'll see Cortana pop up in a full-screen window. It sounds like this will be a feature you'll need to enable in the settings if you want it.
2. Cloud printing for businesses
Although this may not be for everyone, if you have a small business, you'll really love it! Have you ever needed to print something, but you're too far out of range? With this feature, it won't be a problem.
Using the Cloud, the tool will make it possible for people to find corporate printers from a directory. They can then print to any printer that's nearby. Pretty neat, right?
3. More games
The Windows 10 Anniversary Update included six full-screen games, but Build 14986 will include 19 additional games you can enjoy. Here's a list of the games that are coming soon to the Windows Game bar:
- ARMA 3
- Battlefield 1
- Civilization V
- Dark Souls III
- Fallout 4
- Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn
- Mad Max
- Mafia 2
- NBA 2K16
- Star Wars: The Old Republic
- StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm
- The Binding of Isaac
- The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
- Tom Clancy’s The Division
- Total War: WARHAMMER
- World of Tanks
4. Built-in security
This is exciting! Windows 10 already has some built-in security features that are impressive, but the new build will introduce something called the Windows Defender Dashboard. Here, you'll be able to easily control the security of your device in one place. That includes virus protection and scans, firewall and network protection, as well as parental controls and other family options.
5. Bug fixes
These may not be as exciting as the new features that are headed our way, but they will make Windows 10 work a whole lot better. Here are some of the fixes developers have promised for Build 14986:
- Improperly working keyboard monitor hotkeys that don't always adjust the screen's brightness properly.
- Fix for the "Catastrophic Error" that pops up sometimes when opening OneDrive folders.
- Fix for navigation issues in Microsoft Edge.
- Fix for delays in Cortana responses.
- More extensions for Microsoft Edge.