Redstone 3 is now the Windows 10 'Fall Creators Update'

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Expending zero energy on thinking up a new branch title, Microsoft has announced at BUILD 2017 that the next major Windows 10 branch (for most form factors) will be the 'Fall Creators Update'. I guess this makes sense since there's still an emphasis on creating, in this case desktop-hosted story 'remixing' (photos and videos), but it's still a somewhat weak title, if you ask me. The future for phones and mobile in general is yet to be announced, though I've got a feature on the way which will hopefully reveal all.

There was no mention of 'Redstone 3', of course, but that'll be the match-up behind the scenes. We've already seen the first 'feature2' builds for mobile in the Insiders Fast ring, but it's now looking unlikely that any of the 'creative goodies' of the 'Fall Creators Update', which are predominantly desktop/laptop/hybrid-based, requiring larger UIs (and, in some cases multiple input methods), will come to smaller screens, at least in their demoed form so far.

Don't worry, I've got a chart in preparation which will explain everything, graphically.

There was mention on stage of iOS and Android also getting tie-ins to Microsoft's new creative flow applications, but don't forget that Windows 10 Mobile running phones are already 'in', in that they're integrally linked into Microsoft Photos and OneDrive, so I'm not sure whether there's a real imbalance there.

Instead, currently supported (Redstone 2) smartphones will be getting 'feature2' updates, which does include updates to core security, networking, encryption, Cortana, Edge, and so on - which is probably all you need in terms of currency on a 5"-6" phone screen? Again, watch this space, I'll explain more another time.

For Windows 10 Creators Update, for interest sake here on AAWP, Microsoft announced:

  • the Microsoft Fluent Design System (previously codenamed Project Neon) - the transparencies and graphical effects have limited application on the phone, though we have seen some tweaks to the likes of Groove Music recently.
  • OneDrive 'Files on Demand' - so you can see what's in your OneDrive on any device but you don't necessarily have to have local copies of each file - they'll be grabbed on demand.*
  • (Cloud) 'Clipboard' syncing of all text, images and links between all (Microsoft) signed-in devices
  • Timeline, keeping a history of the documents and tasks you were working in/on, so that you can jump back easily at a later date.
  • Story remix, a video creation wizard, pulling in images, video clips, music, even 3D effects and animations, into an intuitive creative interface.

* Note that this isn't needed in the OneDrive UWP app on phone or tablet etc, since everything you're seeing there is, by definition, in the Cloud and also, by definition, available to download 'on demand'. The new feature above is for Win32 Desktop class devices which would traditionally have kept a local copy of everything, but which is not tricky because of smaller storage, e.g. on devices with SSDs rather than hard disks.

In short, and from watching many of the impressive demos, Windows 10 and its ecosystem seems pretty darned healthy, though what we all want to know is what's coming up on truly mobile, pocketable form factors, in terms of both hardware and a version of Windows 10 that will suit it.

PS. Many wags have already pointed out the perils of putting 'Fall' in the title. 'Fall' as in falling over, 'Fall' as in only being called that in the USA and in fact being a whole other season in the Southern Hemisphere, 'Fall' as in close to 'Fail' - and you get the idea, headlines will write themselves(!) Oh well...