SAN FRANCISCO: Microsoft on Wednesday (Jun 29) said it will mark the one-year anniversary of Windows 10 with a major update to the software powering more than 350 million computing devices.
“The Anniversary Update will help people be more productive, stay safer online and, of course, have fun,” Windows and Devices Group corporate vice president Yusuf Mehdi said in a blog post.
The Windows 10 update set for release on Aug 2 promised improved security and enhanced capabilities for the Microsoft Edge browser. It also adds Microsoft Ink, which supports the use of digital pens for tasks such as writing, drawing, or working on math problems.
“Now, using a Windows 10 device, graphic designers can be more creative, musicians can write digital music, lawyers can edit documents with the power of the pen, and students can do mathematical equations and learn by writing – all with Windows Ink,” Mehdi said.
The new Windows 10 also lets virtual assistant Cortana handle more commands, and opens the door to sync with Xbox One consoles to play video games.
The anniversary update was also touted as making Windows computers easier to set-up and use in schools.
Windows 10 operating system is designed to work on laptops, desktops, smartphones, Xbox One consoles, HoloLens augmented reality headsets and more.
Microsoft has been aggressively promoting upgrades from old versions of Windows, and has made Windows 10 available as a free upgrade until the operating system turns one year old on Jul 29.
After that, it will be available pre-installed on new devices or for purchase separately, with a home computer version priced at US$119, according to the Redmond, Washington-based company.
Microsoft provoked ire by pushing people to upgrade to Windows 10 by automating the process and, for a time, modifying the red “x” in a corner of a upgrade notice pop-up box to approve the action instead of simply close the message.
Microsoft has set a goal of having the operating system in use in more than a billion devices by 2018, which would put it on par with Apple, which said this year it has one billion active devices running iOS.