Microsoft released its latest build of Windows 10 to Insiders on the Fast Ring today, bringing a handful of new features to those hardy souls willing to subject themselves to bugs. This time around it’s build 14951 for PCs and mobile devices, and Microsoft provides all of the details in their blog post.
The first update will be welcome to anyone using a Windows 10 PC sporting a precision touchpad. Microsoft is following up on last week’s build 14946, which brought some touchpad customization options, with some other enhancements.
First up is the ability to use a recorder via the Advanced gestures page to capture a favorite key combination. For example, you cancreate a touchpad gesture that kicks off a Win + Alt + D shortcut to pull up the taskbar calendar. Next, the ability to change audio and volume has received its own basic swipe gesture. Finally, the reset button has a progress circle and finished indicator.
Windows Ink on PCs has received additional improvements in build 14951. Dropdowns in the Windows Ink Workspace allow changing pen color and width in a single instance. More impressive is the introduction of Stencils, which combines the Windows Ink protractor tool with compass functionality. The new tool allows you to easily draw an arc or complete circle of any size, with a two-finger pinch gesture allowing resizing and an arc degree readout that follows your finger, pen or mouse input as you move along the side of the protractor.
The camera interface received some significant updates in this build, making it easier to take better pictures on both PCs and mobile devices. Updates include higher contrast capture buttons, the ability to access the camera roll with one hand, easier zooming with a new zoom slider, and enhanced capture animation. Settings can now be accessed direction from the camera UI, and the app now supports setting a timer directly from the camera dashboard.
In addition, living image support is now enabled on Surface Book, Surface Pro 4, Surface Pro 3, and Surface 3. Living images allow you to mix still captures with video snippets, and are created automatically whenever you’re shooting a moving subject. Living images can be easily toggled on and off in settings.
The camera has also received some performance improvements. Feedback when saving large images to SD cards has been improved, the camera now starts up more quickly, and shot-to-shot speed has been enhanced.
Developers are the next group to receive some support in Windows 10 build 14951. If you want to enable Developer Mode on your PC, then you’ll no longer need to reboot, saving significant time when testing your apps. Device Portal and Device Discovery is also thus available immediately after installing the Windows Developer Mode package, no reboot required.
Narrator has been updated with a number of fixes to continuous reading, with better support for tables and web pages, a fix for reading dialog and other elements enabled by the Caps Lock + W key combo, and resolving an issue where hint text no longer interrupts the Narrator from reading information. Finally, Narrator now properly lets you know when it’s closing.
The final area receiving improvements with this build is the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL). Ubuntu 16.04 (Xenial) is now officially supported and replaces Ubuntu 14.04 (Trusty). Windows/WSL inter-operability is also improved, with users now allowed to launch Windows binaries from a WSL command prompt.
General fixes for mobile users include updates to French keyboards to resolve issues with punctuation rules. Camera shutter sounds can now be configured via Settings > Personalization > Sounds.
PC’s have also received some fixes. Connected standby devices such as the Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 should no longer bluescreen when in Connected Standby mode. A number of games should now install correctly, such as Forza Horizon 3 and Gears of War. Larger Windows Store games like ReCore, Gears of War 4, and others should now launch without issue. There are a host other improvements in this build, and so be sure to check out Microsoft’s blog post to see if your most important issue has been resolved.
Finally, before you hit the download button and install Windows 10 build 14951, you’ll want to check out the moderate list of known issues for both PCs and mobile devices. These issues include some Windows 10 Mobile devices getting “stuck” on the Windows logo screen during reboot and requiring 20 to 30 minutes to respond. Of course, if you’re a Fast Ring Windows Insider, then you’re likely already accustomed to such issues and ready to report your experience using the Windows 10 Feedback Hub.
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