Microsoft’s next major Windows 10 release for 2017, the Fall Creators Update, doesn’t make any great noticable change. But you might have gathered that from its name alone. In many ways, it’s a continuation of what the company started with this spring’s Creators Update, which added Paint 3D, game mode and a slew of improvements focused on making things, be it art or a simple spreadsheet. (I’ve heard the word “creation” so many times this year from Microsoft reps, it’s beginning to sound like a cultish chant.)
With its latest OS, available today, Microsoft is preparing for the arrival of virtual-reality headsets. At the same time, it’s delivering some genuinely useful quality-of-life improvements for Windows 10 users.
Here are some of the new features:
- The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update includes new features for developers and security upgrades.
- Support for Microsoft-certified virtual-reality headsets.
- Windows 10 can now relay Android phone notifications to your PC.
- The Fall Creators Update utilizes Microsoft’s first use of its new design theme.
- Windows 10 works better — and has new features for — stylus users.
- Windows 10 is following in Snapchat’s and Facebook’s footsteps, adding augmented-reality stickers.
- You can now pin contact information for your favorite people to the task bar.
- A new feature frees up space by allowing you to store seldom-used files in Microsoft’s cloud.
- Remix the new Photos app can now automatically create video slideshows from photo albums.
- The update adds some handy browser updates, including the ability to pin websites to the task bar.
- OneDrive on-demand
Setting up OneDrive syncing on Windows has always been a hassle and somewhat confusing. With the new Files On-demand feature, though, those worries are may be a thing of the past. OneDrive now lets you see all of the files and folders in your OneDrive without having to manually synchronize them. They simply show up in Windows Explorer. When you need a file, you just have to double-click to download it. Sure, it could lead to some confusion if you work offline a lot, but for many always-connected users, it could end up saving some valuable hard-drive space. Just be sure to still perform regular backups. OneDrive is not a substitute for data backups.