Windows 10 Spring Creators Update will implement Windows Timeline and more
The next major update to Windows 10, which is also known as Version 1803 and Redstone 4, is planned to be released by the end of April 2018. This is in accordance with Microsoft's shift towards two major Windows 10 updates a year, meaning that the following major release for the operating system should arrive this fall.
In addition to the public release of Windows Timeline, which provides an enhanced view of all currently open programs as well as past recent activities, here are some of the changes included with the update as written by our friends at gHacks:
- Eye control improvements: easier navigation, quick access to common tasks and pause function.
- Narrator is enabled in Safe Mode.
- Turn automatically hiding scrollbars off under Settings > Ease of Access > Display.
Gaming and Media
- Game Bar improvements: settings easier to use, clock display.
- HDR functionality unlocked on more Windows PCs.
- Multi-GPU systems graphic settings to set application preferences under Settings > System > Display > Advanced graphics settings.
- Autofill cards on web forms. Edge prompts to save card information and if you accept, may offer the card information in the future. Also, form fill for address fields.
- Clutter-free printing support. Enable the "clutter-free printing" option int the print dialog to enable it.
- Developer Tools: dock the Developer toolbar vertically.
- Edge supports OGG Vorbis and Theora thanks to the Web Media Extensions package.
- Full screen mode (F11) displays the address bar so that you can navigate to other sites using it.
- Free EPUB ebooks can be saved in Edge.
- Hub View: improved to show more content. Navigational elements such as favorites or history listed to the left of the content.
- inPrivate Mode: run extensions and autofill passwords.
- Mute audio for individual tabs.
- Passwords: never save passwords for sites.
- Reading View enhancements: Grammar Tools to "enable new comprehension aids", full-screen reading experience, improved roaming for process and notes across devices, improved library experience, EPUB Media Overlays support, and more.
- Access UWP options from Start (right-click > More).
- Application execution aliases in Settings to run apps from the command prompt.
- App version numbers are shown now in Settings.
- Bluetooth: streamlined pairing and connecting to "certain" Bluetooth devices. Windows 10 shows a notification when it detects a compatible device so that users can initiate the pairing process from the desktop.
- Cortana collections merged with lists.
- Cortana notebook has a new look.
- Cortana suggests activities that you may want to resume.
- Customize list of folders that you use often in the Start Menu.
- Display preferences moved to Settings app
- Embedded handwriting panel.
- Fluent Design effects across the board.
- Fonts moved to the Settings application and fonts are offered on Windows Store.
- Localization changes: Language Packs are available through the Microsoft Store, and Region & Language section of the Settings app.
- My People: drag and drop rearrange, change number of contacts, and more.
- Near Share to share data between two devices wirelessly using Bluetooth.
- New keyboard settings page.
- Quiet Hours renamed to Focus Assist. Access is now available from the Action Center icon, may turn on automatically (when playing DirectX games, presentations).
- Settings app has a new look.
- Sound Settings with new "app volume and device preferences" page, moved to Settings.
- Storage Settings with disk cleanup functionality.
- Touch keyboard multi-lingual text support to write in multiple languages without switching keyboard languages.
- Touch keyboard and handwriting panel improvements.
Privacy and Security
- Control access to pictures, videos and documents folders for UWP apps.
- Diagnostic Data: data that was collected by Microsoft can be deleted under Settings > Privacy > Diagnostics & feedback.
- Diagnostic Data: you can view the collected diagnostic data now.
- File System Access permissions for UWP. Block UWP applications from accessing the file system and display a prompt to give or deny consent.
- Privacy Settings are sorted in categories in the Settings app.
- Security questions for local accounts.
- Settings > Update & Security > Windows Defender renamed to Windows Security and redesigned.
- View and delete the personal user dictionary under Settings > Privacy > Speech, Inking & typing.
- Windows Defender: New account protection pillar and device security pillar functionality. The first will encourage users to use different login methods for faster sign-in, the second lists security features integrated into the Windows device.
- Windows Defender Application Guard for Windows 10 Pro.
- Windows Hello setup improvements by setting it up straight from the sign in screen.
- Enterprises can run custom actions and scripts during feature updates.
- Enterprises can run post rollback scripts.
- Ultimate Performance power scheme for Windows 10 Pro for Workstations: even better performance but requires more power and may impact hardware.
- Windows 10 Pro for Workstations systems get a different set of default UWP tiles and apps after setup than consumer versions of Windows 10.
The "Spring Creators Update" name has yet to be officially confirmed, but has been suggested by multiple leaked documents (as seen here by @WinObs on Twitter). Either way, this update is focusing on background fixes and other relatively minor functionality improvements.