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Top 13 Windows 10 Updates for December 2016

This month, Microsoft releases its Windows 10 Preview Build 14986, and it is packed with new cool features.

Microsoft launches 13 major updates for Windows 10 users just in time for the holidays to make the experience just a little merrier. The Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14986 comes packed with multiple new updates that improve Cortana’s functionality, support options, improved interfaces, and more. Windows 10 will be getting the following improvements:

Cortana Gets More Capable

Microsoft’s voice-activated helper can handle more commands than ever before, giving you the ability to lock, restart, put to sleep, or turn your PC off as well as use the volume control through Cortana’s voice activation capabilities. She can also now go fullscreen when your PC is in idle mode and unlocked for better visibility at a distance.

Cortana can also now control music playback on your PC through your favorite music apps; Microsoft has achieved natural language compatibility with the iHeartRadio and TuneIn apps for integration of the popular apps. You can ask Cortana what song is currently playing as well as command her to play a particular genre.

Lastly, Cortana allows you to sign in using a work or student account through Azure Active Directory (AAD) instead of your Microsoft account. This feature is available in Cortana’s Notebook under “About Me,” and provides most of Cortana’s core features upon sign-in.

Enterprise Cloud Printers

*backend services not yet available for this feature, so please continue to use traditional UI printer discovery until such services become available.

Enterprise Cloud Printers is a pending feature that will be accessible under Settings > Devices > Printers & Scanners; this feature allows users in a corporate environment to discover corporate-level printers through Microsoft’s Azure Active Directory that are also connected to the local AAD network.

Full-Screen Support for Windows Game Bar

Windows 10 Preview Build 14986 has added support for 19 more games in addition to the six from the Windows 10 Anniversary Update in full-screen mode in the Windows Game bar. Here is a list of the newly supported games:

  • ARMA 3
  • Battlefield 1
  • Civilization V
  • Dark Souls III
  • Fallout 4
  • Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn
  • Mad Max
  • Mafia 2
  • NBA 2K16
  • Overwatch
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic
  • StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm
  • The Binding of Isaac
  • The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
  • Terraria
  • Tom Clancy’s The Division
  • Total War: WARHAMMER
  • Warframe
  • World of Tanks

For quick access to the Game bar, press Windows key + G.

New Windows Ink Experience

Ahead of the Creators Update, this build is announcing some impressive new features for Windows Ink, the intuitive drawing program. If you have ever been frustrated by accidentally losing your Screen Sketch, you will now have the ability to resume a sketch you had previously worked on. The Windows Ink pencil, pen, and highlighter flyouts will now be able to give a preview of the currently selected tool, color, and width size. The ruler in Windows Ink has been optimized to rotate in sub-degree increments when moved by touch for more precise alignments. Finally, the cursor is no longer visible when working in Windows Ink for a more immersive experience.

Added Extensions for Microsoft Edge

Some of the new extensions for Windows 10 users include the following:

Better Rendering Technology

Rendering has been updated to use the Windows.UI.Composition API to accommodate many types of UWP app content for XAML UWP app and shell rendering.

New Narrator Features

Narrator has added new features to improve its functionality, including things like:

  • Press Caps Lock + F to get additional information regarding colors, fonts, line spacing, margins, and other features; continue to press Caps Lock + F to cycle through different information
  • Context Awareness is now set to a default level of 2; you will receive additional contextual information as you move around the page, and you can press Alt + Caps Lock + / to cycle through the several options available
  • Press Caps Lock + F in Narrator to access to advanced information about an item with focus

New Windows Defender Interface

A new, more intuitive dashboard for Windows Defender will be available with the Windows 10 Creators Update. Using the new interface will make navigating and controlling the security features of your PC or tablet much easier. Simply search for “Windows Defender” and click on “Windows Defender/Trusted Windows Store app” to access the dashboard.

Improved Registry Editor

File Explorer keyboard shortcut navigation options have been added to Registry Editor; these shortcuts include moving up (Alt + Up Arrow), Left (Alt + Left arrow), or Right (Alt + Right arrow) while using the registry. You are also able to customize the Registry Editor font utilized in the View menu.

USB Audio 2 Class Driver Changes

This change is a temporary one coming from Microsoft in which Windows 10 machines will prefer Microsoft class drivers overall third-party drivers to further vet out any bugs in the system.   

Updating On Your Schedule

Microsoft has realized that the time your machine chooses to update is not always the most convenient for you. Instead of forcing an update, you will have three options to choose from: Restart Now (apply the update), Schedule (arrange for a later time to update), or Remind me later (repeat these options again later).   

Better High DPI support for Desktop Apps

For Windows 10 users that have devices capable of high DPI displays such as Surface Books, text that has typically appeared more blurry in certain desktop apps will show up crisper and clearer than before.

New View 3D Preview App

This new innovative app allows users to view 3D models digitally in Windows. Open 3D Preview and find a 3D object that has been saved on your computer; once open, you will be able to view, rotate, and zoom in and out on the digital object. This app currently supports ‘.fbx’ and ‘.3mf’ files.

Get Windows 10 Now

If you have not yet upgraded to Windows 10, My Choice Software offers all versions at competitive prices and will help you to install the software to ensure everything is working correctly. You can find our Windows 10 products here:

For all other inquiries, contact us at (800) 318-1439 or to see how Windows 10 can work for you.

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