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Microsoft Drops Fresh Windows 10 Mobile Preview With Offline Maps, Text From PC And More

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Continuing on its promise of rolling out builds at a faster pace, Microsoft has today dropped a fresh Windows 10 Mobile Preview build. While the build features general performance improvements, certain notable additions include ability to text and get notified for missed calls via PC (through Cortana), Skype integration, and the ability to store Offline maps to your SD Card

With this build on your phone, Cortana will now notify you on your PC (needs to be running Build 10565 or higher) that you missed a call. When you miss a call, you can reply with a text to the person who called you right from your PC and Cortana will have your phone send it.

missed-call-notification

Apart from that, if you want to send a text from your PC at any time (even when you haven’t missed a call), just type or speak “Text” and the name of a contact to Cortana on your PC just like you would on your phone and Cortana will instantly message that contact via your Windows device.

To make this feature work on your test builds, you need to be signed into Cortana with the same Microsoft Account on both your phone and PC. If you have multiple PCs and don’t want to receive missed call notifications on one of those PCs, you can go to Cortana’s Notebook and then to Settings to toggle “Missed call notifications” to off on any PC on which you don’t want to receive these notifications.

Speaking of Cortana, Microsoft’s vocie assistant has got some more improvements lined up. Cortana can help keep track of your leisure time, including movie and event reminders and will give you helpful information to know where to go and to get there on time, including an option to book and track an Uber ride directly from Cortana.

Offline Maps 

My personal favourite (since I commute a lot) is this particular addition. With the latest Windows phone build, you can now save offline maps to your SD Card (and not just phone memory) and use them anytime you want to go through the same way. MS says that the feature had been a top of the line request by most testers, and has hence been provided with this build.

Skype Integration

As promised by Microsoft during earlier releases, this build has the Skype integration through the Messaging, Phone and Skype video universal Windows apps. Additionally, the Messaging app now supports animated GIFs and includes the ability to search your messages. And the Phone app has the ability to search for contacts from Call History.

Screen Shot 2015-10-21 at 9.43.39 am

The Windows 10 Mobile Photos app also has some nitty gritty improvements along the way. You can now mark local photos on your phone as favorites and have them shuffle on the Live Tile. Microsoft has also made some viewer improvements for zooming performance and file information and added new launch points for rich editing.

Storage settings are also getting a much-needed UX bump, which now comes enabled with a settings page to allow you to install applications to expanded storage such as and SD card or USB drive on BOTH your phone and PC.

Other Notable Improvements :

  • Notifications, such as new messages, can be received without first unlocking the device.
  • Cortana’s background activity has been optimized for power usage.
  • We have fixed some of the issues that were causing the Start screen to not load. Additionally, we have made some performance improvements to the Start screen.
  • We have made performance improvements to Acton Center, including swipe to expand and dismiss notifications. Swiping to expand or dismiss notifications should happen more quickly.
  • The alarm icon now appears on the Lock screen when an alarm is set in the Alarms & Clock app.
  • The proximity sensor during calls is now behaving as expected on devices that may have previously failed to turn the screen off.
  • App downloads in the Store were sometimes getting blocked by a service hanging in the background – this should be resolved and app downloads should be more consistent.
  • The keyboard will switch languages less aggressively now.
  • Taping restart for apply an update will reboot the device immediately now.

Editor-at-large and co-founder at The Tech Portal. He is a tech enthusiast with interests in new-age technology fields like Ai, Machine Learning, AR/VR, Outer Space and related stuff. Drop him a mail anytime, very reachable.


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