Eagerly awaiting the January build of Windows 10? It’s live!

Windows 10 Media Briefing
Windows 10 media briefing webcast
In case you missed it, this Wednesday Microsoft held its first conference to dig into the nitty gritty details of what we can expect from Windows 10. Everything from a refreshed UI to a holographic 3D modeling workshop are said to be a part of the new push, and today they’ve announced that members of the company’s Insider Program will have a chance to get their hands on the January build for the first time.

The build, version 9926, will feature some (but not all), of the new toys and upgrades we saw during Wednesday’s presentation. The biggest upgrade of all of course is Cortana, a fully functional Siri-esque digital assistant that responds to voice activated commands, but not all of its features are enabled in the just-released build.

Related: Hands-on with Cortana in Windows 10

Next is the new Start menu. While not a lot has been changed from what we got with Windows 8.1, the company has heard the voices of the people, and decided to integrate the ability to automatically expand everything out to full screen if you’re using your computer in tablet or touch-ready mode instead of with a traditional mouse and keyboard.

Microsoft will be testing the marketplace waters with their new Windows Store Beta. Other new apps include Xbox, Photos and Maps. There’s also a streamlined Settings experience, which does not replace the Control Panel but does replace the difficult Settings app found in Windows 8.1.

Related: Windows 10 updates Start menu with full-screen mode

If you’re not already a part of the Windows Insider Program but would like to find out how to apply, you can visit Microsoft’s portal for newcomers here. The new build is available to all Insiders at the time of this writing and can be installed either as an upgrade to Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. Users already running Windows 10 can upgrade to it directly from the Metro-style Update app.

Product Review

Oculus Quest is the affordable VR rig we’ve been waiting for

Oculus announced that its Project Santa Cruz virtual reality headset will ship next year as the Oculus Quest, and we got to try out several new game titles on the Quest. Find out our impressions of VR without wires.

The May 2019 update for Windows 10 is live. Here’s how to get your hands on it

Launched this week, Microsoft's May 2019 update for Windows 10 releases a slew of new features, primarily simple and powerful security tools, for home and enterprise users. You can get your hands on these tools by installing the new update…

Windows 10 notifications driving you crazy? Here's how to get them under control

Are the notifications on Windows 10 annoying you? Here's our guide on how to turn off notifications in Windows, and how to manage alerts so that the important stuff still gets through.

Unleash your inner artist with the best drawing apps for the iPad Pro

The best drawing apps for the iPad Pro turn Apple's robust tablet into a canvas worthy of a true artist. Here are 20 of our current favorites, whether you're looking to keep things simple or take your art to the next level.

Windows on a Chromebook is a dead dream, but something better could replace it

Recent code updates posted in Chromium Gerrit indicate that Google has canceled Project Campfire, ending its plans to let Chromebooks dual boot Windows and Chrome OS. Is hope all but lost on this popular feature?
Home Theater

Plex is free and easy, and you'll wonder how you survived without it

If you want a Netflix-like experience for the media you already own, you need Plex. It's the free media center software that automatically catalogs and plays your movies, music, photos, and more, on your TV. Here's how to use it.

Amazon’s one-day sale takes up to 69 percent off wireless accessories

Looking for a mechanical keyboard or a better mouse to take your gaming experience to the next level? You can now save up to 69 percent on these accessories through Amazon's sale. These prices are only good for today, so act fast!

Apple’s updated MacBook Pro may be twice as fast, but can it handle the gains?

Apple refreshed its MacBook Pro lineup, delivering up two twice the performance improvements. The 15-inch model tops out with an eight-core ninth-generation Intel processor and discrete AMD graphics alongside a slightly tweaked keyboard.

Dell XPS 13 laptops get steep price cuts before Memorial Day weekend

Dell is having an early access version of its Memorial Day sale, featuring deep discounts on its XPS 13 laptops. Customers can snag three different versions of the XPS 13 with discounts of up to $460.

HP Memorial Day sale: Spectre x360 Laptops, Omen gaming PCs, and printers

Memorial Day is a time for relaxation and remembrance, but it's also a huge season for yearly sales. The HP Memorial Day sale has deep discounts on laptops, desktop, printers, and more, and we’ve rounded up the best deals right here.

Samsung MicroSD memory cards get massive discounts in Amazon Memorial Day deal

Samsung's Evo Select series of MicroSD memory cards, now half off on Amazon, are some of the best in the business. Expand the storage space on your smartphone, tablet, camera, and other devices today.

The top mesh routers for a bigger, better, and faster Wi-Fi network

The best mesh routers and Wi-Fi extenders give a wireless network both range and speed. Better yet, they scale fantastically well, so you can always expand your network if you need it to be larger tomorrow than it is today.

The top curved monitors for gaming, work, entertainment, and more

A curved monitor can provide an immersive experience at work or play - especially with ultrawide monitors. Here's a selection of the best curved monitors available and what they excel at.

Best Memorial Day sales 2019: The top deals from Walmart, Dell, and Home Depot

If you're looking to save big on some shiny new stuff for Memorial Day 2019, we've gathered everything you need to know into one place. Find out where to save the most money before the summer hits its stride.