The Fall Creators Update, Microsoft’s next major update for Windows 10 is now in development. Here’s everything we know so far.
Microsoft is now hard at work developing the next major update for Windows 10. Dubbed the “Fall Creators Update,” it is expected to launch in early Fall 2017 and will focus on a whole bunch of new improvements for Windows 10 users.
Of course, if a feature is coming in the Fall Creators Update, Insiders will likely have the chance to play with it before the official launch in October/November. So, what do we expect to see show up in the Fall Creators Update for PC?
Originally planned for the Creators Update, My People is a new social feature being built into the Fall Creators Update that will allow you to pin your favorite contacts to your taskbar for easy access recent conversations, emails, contact details and more. You’ll be able to share files directly to a contact on your taskbar, collaborate in documents and keep in touch no matter where you are in the operating system.
My People allows for up to three contacts to be pinned on the taskbar at one time.
Hands-on with the My People in the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update
Fluent Design System
We exclusively revealed last year that Microsoft was working on a new design language that would give Windows more flair and fluidity, something that it seemingly lacks currently. Microsoft confirmed at Build 2017 that its new design language, now known as the Fluent Design System, will begin showing up throughout Windows 10 with the Fall Creators Update.
The Fluent Design System is already available in several of Microsoft’s first party apps, including Groove Music, Maps and more. With the Fall Creators Update, we’ll see the Fluent Design System in more system areas, including Start, Action Center, Taskbar and more. The Fluent Design System will show up in more and more areas of the OS over time, and the Fall Creators Update is the first update where we’ll see it system-wide.
Windows 10 ARM
Microsoft announced last year that Windows 10 would be coming to ARM-based processors, with full Win32 emulation support. We believe Windows 10 on ARM based laptops/tablets will be ready with the Fall Creators Update in, well the fall. It’s unlikely that we’ll see full Windows 10 running on phones in the fall, however, so don’t be holding your breath for that.
Full Windows 10 coming to ARM-based laptops and tablets is significant, mainly because of the Win32 emulation support. Unlike Windows RT, Windows 10 on ARM-powered laptops and tablets will be able to run your normal Win32 programs, meaning it won’t be locked to the Windows Store. Microsoft has a separate edition of Windows 10 for that called Windows 10 S.
OneDrive Placeholders On-Demand Sync
It’s a feature that Insiders have been asking for ever since OneDrive placeholders were removed from Windows 10 two years ago. Microsoft confirmed at Build 2017 that OneDrive Placeholders are returning under a new name — On-Demand Sync — and will be better implemented throughout the operating system.
In fact, this feature is already available for Insiders. If you’re running build 16215 or newer, you can check out On-Demand Sync now. It hooks up directly with the File Explorer, and gives you a status column where you can see if a file or folder is in the cloud, local or saved. It’s a much smarter system for cloud-based file syncing, and means users won’t have to download their synced files anymore.
Microsoft will be introducing a new cloud-enabled clipboard with the Fall Creators Update, that will allow users to copy/paste items across devices thanks to the cloud. Microsoft has been working on a solution like this for some time now, with its original name being called OneClip. It appears with the Fall Creators Update however, this functionality will be baked into the operating system.
It’s unclear when we’ll see this feature show up for Insiders. As it currently stands, it’s still not in testing yet. It is scheduled for the Fall Creators Update however, which is coming in October.
Cortana Speaker Devices
Harman/Kardon and many more 3rd party hardware makers will begin launching new Cortana-enabled speakers this fall alongside the Fall Creators Update. Microsoft already demoed how this will work at Build 2017, with a Harman/Kardon speaker powered by Cortana. We’ve already gone hands-on with the setup process, so work is ongoing for this feature.
HP and other OEMs have also announced Cortana-based speakers, all of which will be able to hook up to Windows 10 PCs running the Fall Creators Update. We’ll learn more about Cortana speakers over the coming weeks and months.
Bye Bye HomeGroup
wait… when did Microsoft ever announce they were going to sunset Homegroup (in RS3?)? @maryjofoley @zacbowden @bdsams @thurrott pic.twitter.com/23oayJkbsZ
— Tony (@win10fan) 22 April 2017
It appears, according to a support page on Microsoft’s own website, that HomeGroup will be “sunset” in the next feature update for Windows 10, which just happens to be the Fall Creators Update. HomeGroup provides rudimentary file and printer sharing between home networks.
We’re not entirely sure how popular the HomeGroup feature is, which has been in Windows for quite a few years at this point, but beware that it appears it’ll be going away soon.
Incoming call notifications
Starting with the Fall Creators Update, if you use an Android device with Cortana, Windows 10 will inform you whenever there’s an incoming call on your Android device, allowing you to ignore the call or text them back, directly from your desktop.
This is a feature that Windows phone users are already accustomed to, so it’s good to see the feature coming to Android users too.
Photos Story Remix
The Fall Creators Update will include an update to the Photos app that allows you to create short clips using photos and video from your local or OneDrive library. You can add effects, music, and different editing styles super easily and conveniently.
Story Remix is a sister app to Paint 3D, as both allow you to create content. Paint 3D allows you to create 2D or 3D drawings and objects, whereas Story Remix allows you to mix together photos and video clips to create short, creative videos to share with family and friends.
Battery Life Improvements
The Fall Creators Update will also introduce improvements to battery life behind the scenes. For example, devices with the Fall Creators Update will have a battery slider which will allow the user to easily switch between several different preset modes to help save battery life. By default, it will remain on “Recommended”, but the user is free to change that to “Power Saver”, which will save battery as much as possible, “Better Performance” which will favour performance over battery, and “Best Performance” that won’t factor in battery life at all.
While Microsoft were unable to commit to a release timeframe for the Fall Creators Update, Microsoft recently announced that Windows 10 was moving to a two-per-year upgrade schedule, where Windows 10 updates are scheduled to launch in March/April and September/October every year. Considering we already had our March/April release for 2017 with the Creators Update, it makes sense to assume the Fall Creators Update will be launching in September/October.
If we had to put money on it, we’d say October is when the Fall Creators Update will be released. We suspect Microsoft will sign off on the Fall Creators Update sometime in September allowing Insiders to test the final bits for a couple of weeks before beginning a public rollout in October.
What do you think?
That’s our list for what looks to be in the works for the Fall Creators Update. Of course, at any point Microsoft can cancel or delay a feature, so keep that in mind. In the meantime, tell us what you’re most hoping for with Windows 10 Fall Creators Update in the fall.