Interesting post by Panos Panay on the Windows Insider Program blog yesterday (May 4, 2020). Entitled Accelerating innovation in Windows 10 to meet customers where they are, it’s read-worthy. First, it starts off with an “aw shucks, just happy to be here” intro. Then it recaps the one billion active monthly Windows 10 devices message first publicized on March 16. Then it says this:
Customers are using Windows PCs to stay productive, connect and learn in this time. In fact, over 4 trillion minutes are being spent on Windows 10 a month, a 75% increase year on year.
I can’t help but see this as a response to Greg Keizer’s ComputerWorld story from yesterday that reports shrinking Windows desktop share, offset by Linux gains. Turns out this may just be another case of “who’s reporting numbers, and how are they reporting them” because the source is Net Applications (NetMarketShare also shows a dip, but gives more of it to MacOS and less to Linux). Be that as it may, Windows is still way, way ahead of other desktop OSes and fluctations like these are as likely to be random (or within the margin of error) as they are to be meaningful.
May 2020 Is Here: Where’s the Windows 10 Update?
Good question. Panay repeats that it will be ready this month. But rumors are rife, and fairly consistent, that it won’t be ready for Patch Tuesday (May 12). Rather, most sources are betting on sometime on or after May 26, at least two weeks later. Panay talks about upcoming improvements to Bluetooth device pairing, an improved tablet experience, and changes for those who use “Ease of Access” tools in Windows 10. He also mentions more kaomoji becoming directly available through the Windows emoji keyboard. Then he thanks the Insiders for their contributions to shaping the future of Windows and encourages more people to join that program. Motherhood and apple pie, is the way I read this.
Here Comes Accelerating Innovation
His next topic deals with “meaningful innovation in ways that matter most to the billion people around the world relying on Windows right now.” He promises to accelerate innovation in Windows 10 “in this holiday and the next.” Uhhh…does that mean Memorial Day and Fourth of July? Probably not. I’m tempted to say it means the holiday shopping seasons for 2020 and 2021. But who knows? He doesn’t say, exactly.
Then he drops the bomb: the dual-screen Windows devices promised last October are out, and leveraging the power of the cloud is in. The future for Windows 10X is pivoting to focus on single-screen devices “that leverage the power of the cloud.” Dual-screen devices are on hold until “the right moment, in conjunction with our OEM partners, to bring dual-screen devices to market.” Shoot! I’d actually been thinking about trying out the Neo just to see what it felt and worked like.
Build Is Free; Sign Up Now
The post concludes with a general invitation for any and all interested parties to attend the virtual Microsoft Build conference from May 19-21 (he calls it a “48-hour digital experience”). Registration is free, so people have access to lots of information “to learn new skills, solve problems, and build together.” He ends with the observation that “much more is coming; this is just the beginning.” Very interesting.
It is a feel-good kind of blog post, long on buzzwords but lamentably short on details. I guess you can’t blame the guy: we live in uncertain times. It’s better to make vague promises than to disappoint by failing to meet clear and specific deadlines. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to watch for what’s coming to Windows 10, and when it will get here. Stay tuned!
Author: Ed Tittel
Ed Tittel is a 30-plus-year computer industry veteran. He’s a Princeton and multiple University of Texas graduate who’s worked in IT since 1981 when he started his first programming job. Over the past three decades he’s also worked as a manager, technical evangelist, consultant, trainer, and an expert witness. See his professional bio for all the details.