Microsoft has continued to expand and improve its offerings across non-Windows platforms. It has expanded its Office for Android tablet preview; opened new cross-platform advertising opportunities on MSN Apps, which is available on Windows, Android, iOS and Amazon; released an improved version of Skype for iPhone; and launched Outlook for IoS and Android.
OneDrive is a focus area for Microsoft to help drive usage of other Microsoft services. It now includes the Save to OneDrive feature to make it easy to deal with email attachments when using Outlook.com.
Microsoft has revealed much more information about Windows 10 and, in particular, shown its desire to encourage Windows users to migrate to Windows 10 by offering the new operating system for free to Windows 7, 8 and 8.1 users. The offer will be available for 1 year after the commercial release of Windows 10 – so really designed to create a migration impetus.
From a daily usage perspective, Windows 10 has made significant improvements over Window 8.1 – essentially bringing the best of Window 7 and 8 together and, at the same time, introducing a range of interface rationalisations, such as an integrated Settings interface to make customisations and preferences much easier to do and, more importantly, find.
The intention is to bring a Windows 10 to the phone and Xbox, albeit that only the core is common across platforms. This is fundamental for the Universal App, which allows developers to target their apps across all Microsoft platforms via a unified Microsoft Store.
Windows 10 will include a new browser, code named Spartan, which is designed to make web pages much easier to read via a new “reading mode”. Spartan will be made available on Windows Phones, tablets and PCs.
Cortana is imbedded in Windows 10, with changes applied to take advantage of running on a desktop device. It becomes the built in search mechanism for finding information and files.
Microsoft has said that holographic capabilities will be enabled inside Windows 10 devices with APIs and that all universal apps can be made to work with Windows Holographic. Depending on developer interest, there could be some very interesting apps published to capitalise on this new capability.