Microsoft has explained its “Windows 10 as a Service” timelines and frequency of Windows 10 update releases. Microsoft as revealed in official documents plans to release a Windows 10 PC / Mobile OS update every six months. This will be achieved with help of Insiders who will continue receiving new OS Builds after release of each OS update iteration to general non-insider public.
Microsoft will release the latest Windows 10 Mobile OS update known officially as Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update starting August 2 for supported devices. The supported devices are essentially those which are running Windows 10 Mobile (Build 10586.XXX) officially like Lumia 430, Lumia 435, Lumia 532, Lumia 535, Lumia 540 and others. We have already shared massive Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update changelog and have also reviewed all the Redstone / Anniversary update Builds being an Insider.
Here in this article we will share our definitive review of the upcoming “Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update”. We are also sharing a 36 minute video that demos all the Anniversary update changes vs Windows 10 Mobile Threshold side-by-side.
Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update Video Review & Changes / new features vs Threshold Demo:
In this video not only we demo all that is new in Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update vs Windows 10 Mobile Threshold side by side but we also share our review of the upcoming OS release.
Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update Review
Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update brings many important and significant changes across the OS and you will feel it at every step.
Lock Screen Changes:
Microsoft has used Insider’s feedback properly to add many new desirable features like Camera button, Music Controls on Lock Screen which makes it easy to access Camera or control Music play without even unlocking the smartphone.
Microsoft has also worked to improve performance of the OS and make the experience consistent. This is something you will certainly feel with Anniversary update. It is noticeably faster and smoother than the Threshold (existing Windows 10 Mobile OS). You can check our hands-on impressions video of the latest Anniversary update Build 14393.5 for performance, gaming and multitasking demo.
Action Center & Notification UI Changes :
Coming to Action Center changes you can now not only control quick-action buttons and change their position but you an also notice many notification improvements. You an also control how many notifications for a particular app appear in Action Center and also change the priority of notifications.
Cortana has undergone UI changes and also has added some new features like “Notification mirroring”, Language change and others.
Settings UI changes:
Settings have seen many UI changes and now you will see all sub-settings with an icon. Some settings have been moved too to streamline the whole experience.
You can now also set the time in which you are most active on your phone just like on your PC by adjusting active hours under Settings > Update & security > Windows Update. Windows Update will avoid automatically installing updates during your active hours on your device.
Keyboard & typing:
Coming to keyboard & typing, movable Keyboard and one-handed keyboard mode now available on more 5-inch devices like Lumia 640 and Lumia 830. The update also brings new Emoji & better copy-paste.
Battery Settings and Battery Saving Experience:
Updated Battery Settings and Battery Saving Experience. There is now a single entry point for all battery related settings in the Settings app – including Battery Saver. This also includes the updated the Detailed Battery Use page so you can now manage the per-app background settings inline without going to a second page. There is also a new “Managed by Windows” option.
Messaging improvements allow swipe to delete messages and also multiple select by tapping to left.
Phone improvements bring audio-routing, call-transfer, Missed call, voicemail waiting indicators and contact suggestions
Here are the positives and negatives of the Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update as per our experience of playing with all Anniversary update Builds.
- Faster and more responsive than Threshold
- Many usability improvements that really help
- Customization of Quick action buttons & notifications enhancements
- Better Control on notifications
- Battery Saver has become much easier to use and more powerful
- Cortana gets many exciting features including notification mirroring
- Microsoft Edge adds Swipe navigation, better tab behavior & UI changes
- Major apps revamps like Store, Skype, Maps, Groove Music, Mail & Calendar and more
- Good to Excellent Battery Life
- Bluetooth settings UI remains unchanged and is still buggy
- Messaging-Skype integration depreciated
- Native FM Radio App gets removed
- Microsoft Edge needs more improvements like “swipe down to close Tabs”, extensions & even better sync performance
- Outlook Mail & Calendar and Store can still run into issues
- Some expected features like Apps for Websites, Apps Handsoff, Universal Dismiss still missing even after public announcement.
With Windows 10 Mobile Anniversary update Microsoft has taken a step forward in right direction. Windows 10 Mobile OS (Threshold) had a raw and unfinished feel to it. Even with latest Builds it has many surprise bugs, issues and a hint of inconsistency. With Anniversary update Microsoft has made Windows 10 Mobile much more consistent, faster and responsive. You will certainly feel the difference. There are many usability enhancements too (like Lock-screen controls, Quick-action button customization, notification control) and these make using the OS more enjoyable.
We recommend updating to Anniversary update as compared to Threshold it is certainly a good jump in overall user experience and Windows 10 Mobile user and fans deserve it.