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The next major Windows 10 release will be called the Creators Update

By Koh Wanzi - on 29 Oct 2016, 7:59am

The next major Windows 10 release will be called the Creators Update

Note: This article was first published on October 26, 2016.

Microsoft’s next major Windows 10 update finally has a name. One of the first headlines out of Microsoft’s Surface event today was the announcement of the Windows 10 Creators Update, slated for release in early 2017. However, users enrolled in the Windows Insiders beta program can download an early build starting this week.

As the name suggests, the Creators Update was designed with creativity in mind. That may seem obvious, but the kicker is that Microsoft isn’t focusing on boring 2D creations. Instead, the company is honing in on 3D creation, bucking the longstanding trend of 2D productivity apps comprising content like emails, documents, spreadsheets, and slides.

According to Microsoft, 3D is for everyone, and the Creators Update will ship with a ton of features that empower 3D creations, including a brand new Paint 3D app. It will also allow physical objects to be translated seamlessly into digital creations, opening the door to new types of content and methods of expression. Microsoft's goal is ambitious – it wants to make 3D creation as simple as taking a photo or video with your phone.

We saw a hint of how this might pan out on stage, where the company showed that it could convert a real-life model of a sandcastle into a 3D digital model. This took place on the HP Elite x3 phone, and consisted simply of walking around the model to capture it from all angles. The digital model then began to take shape on the phone's screen almost instantly.

Microsoft envisions this being possible on all phones, not just the Elite x3.

More importantly, the Creators Update lays the foundation for Microsoft to advance its vision for augmented and mixed reality experiences. 3D creations dovetail with the HoloLens headset, but Microsoft is also looking to expand the ecosystem with a slew of devices from its partners.

The company said that HP, Dell, Lenovo, ASUS, and Acer already have VR headsets on the way, with prices starting at US$299. These headsets will include inside-out tracking sensors, eliminating any need for external cameras or tracking systems, and support 6-degrees of freedom.

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