Here are the 5 best new features in the Windows 10 Creators Update

how to take a screenshot on a pc
If you’ve read our full write-up on the Windows 10 Creators Update, you may have noticed that the landmark features weren’t standouts to us. Gaming mode didn’t provide much of a performance boost at all, Paint 3D is still a mess, and the holographic and mixed reality support is conspicuously absent, as far as we can tell.

Instead, it was the minor changes that impressed us. Small updates to interface, functionality, and existing infrastructure can have a huge positive impact on a system’s everyday usability.

Windows Goodnight

Lately people have become more aware of the fact that blue light before bed can cause sleep issues. It’s harder on your eyes, and your brain. Programs like f.lux naturally filter out blue light and change the white balance of your screen in coordination with the sun rising and setting, helping you keep a more regular sleep schedule.

In response to this growing trend, Microsoft went ahead and built the functionality into the Creators Update. It’s called Night Light, and you can turn it on or off in the Display settings. Dig a little further in, and you’ll also find settings for how much tint you want applied, with an option to set the time yourself, or lock it to sunrise and sunset, assuming you have location services enabled.

It works well enough, although it lacks the grace of the f.lux app, which allows you to set and manage a curve across the whole day, rather than just flipping a switch at sunset. There’s also no quick way to turn off Night Light without going into the settings, where other applications let you suspend or manage your tint from the taskbar. Still, it’s a nice option that may encourage more people to seek other blue light-limiting options.

A sharpened Edge

Progress continues apace on Microsoft’s new Edge browser, and it’s starting to take shape into a modern competitor. The Creators Update packed in some useful features, including a session management mode that lets you set aside a browsing session and pick it up on another machine or Windows Phone.

windows 10 creators update review win10creatorsupdate screen 5

Support for other features is still in its fledgling stages, but extensions are making their way into the browser, which is good news for users potentially looking to lose Chrome or Firefox. Not that we think people will be rushing to abandon their favorite browser in favor of Edge, but it’s a closer fight than ever before, and with continued updates and support, Edge could easily become a viable option as a daily driver.


Streaming gameplay to live services like and YouTube Gaming is quickly becoming more popular, but the most common applications aren’t exactly easy to use. OBS is free, but has a steep learning curve, and you must learn about encoding settings and proper bitrate to achieve decent quality output. Microsoft has stepped in with a swath of new gaming features for the Creators Update, but easy game streaming is our favorite.

It couldn’t be easier. Simply launch your favorite game, open the Game Bar, and hit Broadcast

It couldn’t be easier. Simply launch your favorite game, open the Game Bar, and hit Broadcast. There’s a catch, of course, in that the built-in streaming solution will only broadcast to Beam, a relatively unknown service owned by Microsoft. If you don’t have an account already, and you’re signed into a linked Microsoft account, a Beam account will be automatically created for you.

The issue isn’t with the streaming aspect itself, which couldn’t be easier to setup and get rolling. Instead, the issue is with Beam, which doesn’t have nearly the user base of the more common game streaming services. It’s a solid option for showing a few friends what you’re playing, but it’s not a platform you could build a career on, at least not yet.

Paint your Windows

In addition to the Night Light, Microsoft has rolled several interface improvements into the Creators Update. You can now alter the color scheme of the edges of your windows and highlight colors, set custom colors, toggle transparency effects, and even apply themes that package together all your personalization settings into modes you can switch between.

windows 10 creators update review win10creatorsupdate screen

Okay, so it might not be the groundbreaking feature you were looking for, but it’s a nice touch that continues to improve Windows 10’s everyday usability and aesthetic appeal. It is, after all, the Creators Update, so there had to be some artistic qualities to it, right?

Keep it secret, keep it safe

Windows 10’s initial launch was plagued by concerns of overreaching telemetry and reporting that was happening under the hood. Microsoft tried to assuage concerns by reminding people they had to opt in as they installed the OS, but the sentiment has carried on unabated. The Creators Update adds new features and descriptions to the privacy settings, allowing users to take more acute control of their data while keeping track of what Microsoft is seeing.

It still might not be specific or detailed enough to appease power users, but at least casual Windows fans will be able to easily see what’s being shared with Redmond, and what’s being kept on their system. The settings page includes easy links out to Microsoft pages that also let you make decisions about the files in your OneDrive, and the security settings you use in browsers that aren’t Edge.


An update to Microsoft To-Do will help you keep up with your resolutions

If you're looking to stay productive in 2019, you might want to check out the freshly updated Microsoft To-Do app, now with additional integration with the Windows 10 Start Menu and more.

Android vs. iOS: Which smartphone platform is the best?

If you’re trying to choose a new phone and you’re not sure about the merits and pitfalls of the leading smartphone operating systems, then come on in for a detailed breakdown as we pit Android vs. iOS in various categories.

Getting Windows 10 updated doesn't have to be so painful

Windows update not working? It's a more common problem than you might think. Fortunately, there are a few steps you can take to troubleshoot it and in this guide we'll break them down for you step by step.

One game console is better than the rest, and we're not afraid to say it

We've seen a relatively large influx of new consoles in the last year, including the Nintendo Switch and Xbox One X, so we've updated our recommendations for the best dedicated game hardware.

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.

Could the next Microsoft HoloLens be announced at MWC 2019?

After not having a presence at Mobile World Congress for three years, Microsoft is now sending out media invites for a press conference on February 24 during the annual event in Barcelona. Could a next-generation HoloLens be on the way?

Microsoft to separate Cortana from search with the next version of Windows 10

Changes are on the way for two key features in Windows 10. A separation of Windows 10 search and Cortana will allow Microsoft to more often innovate on each of the features independently.

Delete tracking cookies from your system by following these quick steps

Cookies are useful when it comes to saving your login credentials and other data, but they can also be used by advertisers to track your browsing habits across multiple sites. Here's how to clear cookies in the major browsers.

Convert your PDFs into convenient Word documents with Adobe or a free option

PDF files are great, but few document types are as malleable as those specific to Microsoft Word. Here's how to convert a PDF file into a Word document, whether you prefer to use Adobe's software suite or a freemium alternative.

Nvidia’s next midrange card might be a GTX 1660 Ti, rumors suggest

Nvidia may be working on a non-RTX Turing graphics card called the 1660 Ti. Rumors suggest it will have around 20 percent fewer CUDA cores than the RTX 2060 and will lack ray tracing support.

From Samsung to HP, here are the best cheap Chromebook deals right now

Whether you want a compact laptop to enjoy some entertainment on the go, or you need a no-nonsense machine for school or work, we've smoked out the best cheap Chromebook deals -- from full-sized laptops to 2-in-1 convertibles -- with most…

Chromebook 13 vs. Google Pixelbook: Acer model takes on the king

Acer's Chromebook 13 is throwing tons of speed at the Chrome OS market, to go with a midrange build and traditional clamshell design. Is that enough to challenge the Google Pixelbook?

Data breach compromises 773 million records, 21 million passwords

A security researcher was alerted to a collection of breached data that included more than 773 million compromised records. After digging deeper, the breach was revealed to contain more than 21 million passwords.

Dell teases new XPS laptop with Intel’s 10th-gen Ice Lake for summer 2019

After teasing a mysterious Ice Lake-powered XPS laptop during Intel's keynote, Dell confirmed that it will announce a new 10th-generation Ice Lake-powered XPS laptop this year. The new XPS notebook could debut as early as summer.