Windows 10’s latest feature update, titled the Fall Creators Update, starts rolling out today. Microsoft is going to kick off the rollout of the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update today, and users running Windows 10 will be getting the new update over the coming months. The update is being rolled out gradually, so it could take months before your PC actually gets the new features included in the update. You won’t be missing out on much though — unlike the Creators Update, there isn’t a lot to look forward to in the Fall Creators Update. It’s one of the smallest updates to Windows 10 ever released, focusing mostly on minor refinements and features. The update does, however, include some exciting new features. Here are 5 of the most notable ones:
OneDrive Files On-Demand
Remember OneDrive Placeholders? They are making a come back with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update as OneDrive Files On-Demand. The new feature is much improved and less confusing than OneDrive Placeholders. For one, the new system works perfectly with the modern Windows 10 apps. At its core, OneDrive Files On-Demand still works the same way as OneDrive Placeholders for the most part. Once you add your OneDrive account to your Windows 10 PC, OneDrive will show all of your files in the File Explorer — but it actually won’t download the file on your device, enabling you to save a lot of space. Instead, it will only download a file or folder once you actually open it which is very, very neat. You will also be able to set certain folders or files to always be kept on your device so that you can access them when you are offline.
It’s important to note that OneDrive Files On-Demand may not be available right after you update to Windows 10 Fall Creators Update — you’ll actually need to update the OneDrive client in Windows to be able to use the new feature in the Fall Creators Update.
Microsoft is introducing a brand new design language for Windows 10 with the Fall Creators Update. It’s called Fluent Design, and it will bring a splash of modern design to Windows 10. With the Fall Creators Update, Microsoft is adding a small part of the Fluent Design system to the operating system. You will start seeing Fluent Design’s Acrylic (read: blur), Reveal and Connected Animation effects in some of Windows 10’s stock apps, but the majority of the new design system is nowhere to be seen in the update.
Microsoft’s implementation of the Fluent Design system in Windows 10 right now looks way different from the concepts the company showed off earlier this year. Don’t get to me wrong, the new Fluent Design elements in Windows 10 and its stock apps look pretty good, but the design is still inconsistent and feels incomplete. Microsoft’s going to keep making improvements to the design of Windows 10 with next year’s updates (codenamed Redstone 4 and Redstone 5), so the new design elements in the Fall Creators Update will feel half-baked at the moment.
MyPeople, the new integrated people experience in Windows 10 that was supposed to arrive earlier this year with the Creators Update is finally here with the Fall Creators Update. Even though Microsoft has been working on MyPeople for years, the feature wasn’t ready in time for the Creators Update release back in August. Well, it’s ready now and you can try it out with the Fall Creators Update.
MyPeople is an interesting new experience in Windows 10 which lets you easily interact with and share things with your friends, co-workers or family members. MyPeople lets you “pin” three contacts to the Windows taskbar, and you can interact with these contacts using apps like Skype and Outlook Mail right from the taskbar. It lets you drag-and-drop a file or a picture with a contact without needing to open up an app which is pretty useful.
MyPeople is actually really useful, but it’s going to be a bit pointless if third-party apps don’t support the feature. Skype and Outlook Mail are the only notable apps that support MyPeople right now, and if apps like Facebook or Twitter don’t add support for the feature, the feature will get useless pretty quickly.
Windows Mixed Reality
Although Microsoft initially launched Windows Mixed Reality with the Creators Update, it wasn’t completely ready back then. Plus, Microsoft only started shipping the first set of Windows Mixed Reality headsets from its partners today, so you will get the full experience starting with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update.
If you happen to have purchased one of the Windows Mixed Reality headsets, you can use it to experience VR experiences, watch 360-degree videos, or use the regular UWP apps in Mixed Reality with your headset. Windows Mixed Reality is supposed to get support for SteamVR in the future, but that’s not available yet — so if you are planning on playing VR games on your Windows Mixed Reality headset, you will have to wait a bit longer.
Windows 10 has a new Story Remix experience as part of the reimagined Photos experience in the OS that lets you make cool videos and memories out of your photos and videos. Story Remix lets you add cool animations, music and even special effects that will allow you to make impressive videos out of your existing photos or videos from the existing Microsoft Photos app. Some of Story Remix’s special effects are only limited to Office 365 subscribers, but normal users will still get access to the majority of the special effects found on Story Remix.
In case you are wondering, Story Remix isn’t quite a full-fledged video editor or an Apple iMovie alternative. The feature is quite limited at the moment, and it’s supposed to be more of a minimal video editor that lets you make cool-looking videos without putting in a lot of effort.
There’s a whole set of other updates to Windows 10 in the Fall Creators Update. It includes a handy new emoji dialog which lets you easily insert emojis into text fields using the Windows + Period shortcut, and there’s also a brand-new Action Center that’s easier to navigate. Microsoft Edge also got a decent performance boost, and Continue on PC will also turn out to be very useful at times.
The Fall Creators Update may not include features you will actually find useful, but it’s still a substantial update for the OS. A word of warning, though: if you want a stable Windows experience, you are probably better off staying in the Windows 10 Creators Update for the time being. Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is quite buggy in places, and there will be a lot of day 1 bugs which Microsoft will fix over the coming weeks and months.