What to Expect from the Windows 10 April 2018 Update
Microsoft is pushing out its Windows 10 Spring Update this month. Also known as the April 2018 Update, the rollout brings a heap of new features and fixes to the already great computing experience with Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system. Chief among the changes made through the update are improvements with Microsoft Edge, productivity functionalities, and a better integration of Microsoft’s Fluent Design language.
Here’s what to expect from the upcoming Windows 10 Spring Update.
The biggest change on Windows 10 is called “Timeline”, a time-based search function embedded to the Windows Task View. In it, users can find a particular activity they did on their Windows device, pluck that said activity, and pick up where they left off. For example, I’m due to send in a sales report that I’ve started two weeks ago on my Surface Book. I can search it using my PC’s Timeline feature, pick the Presentation file, and finish the report.
See it in action:
Windows Nearby Share
O.K., say you’re familiar with AirDrop. Nearby Share is just like that, and some more. Microsoft pegs it as a nifty solution for sharing files through your Windows-powered devices. I imagine it’s great if you need to quickly share a photo or a document with a nearby colleague. What’s great is Nearby Share isn’t tied to your Microsoft account. Meaning, it works with other non-Windows devices too.
Windows Focus Assist
Productivity, it seems, is a focus for Microsoft this update. Their new feature, Focus Assist, is a handy toggle for notifications, enabling you to shut off notifications when you’re doing something that requires your full, undistracted attention. What’s more, Focus Assist is designed to work in a manner that doesn’t require you to think about it that much. Kind of like a set-it-then-forget-it feature, which is awesome.
See the live demo from Microsoft here:
Microsoft Edge improvements
Microsoft Edge is getting more power-ups. Slowly but surely, it’s lining itself at-par among the ranks of Chrome, Safari, and Firefox. Understandably, most of the features it’s rolling out are small but useful, chiefly desktop notifications (like in Chrome), the ability to mute sound from a website directly on the tab, and a redesigned Hub interface, adding a Books function, which makes Edge perfect for students and professionals doing research.
All of this comes in a lot cleaner, simpler design language owed to Microsoft’s very own Fluent design. Which brings me…
More prominent Fluent Design
Microsoft’s Fluent Design has been teased quite a lot. And boy, does it look good in action. There’s plenty of it embedded onto some of Windows 10’s parts, including Quick Actions and Action Center. The flat, minimalist approach married with gorgeous-looking frosted panels and a new hover effect Microsoft dubs as Reveal effect.
See it in action:
The My People hub has also been revamped, with a new Apps tab added that lets users access Apps from within the taskbar. Speaking of which, after the update, users are now able to pin up to 10 people on the taskbar, instead of just 3.
A huge chunk of the update are cosmetic, some are gravely overdue, but few are legitimately exciting. I’m excited for this to roll over to my Windows 10 laptop to give you a proper review. Officially, the Spring Update is due to roll out today, April 30th, but due to time differentials and varying schedules with different manufacturers, I’d say give it a few days (or even weeks) for it to reach your computer.