Microsoft Releases a New Build of Windows 10 for Phones

Posted on April 10, 2015 by Paul Thurrott in Windows Phones with 0 Comments

Microsoft Releases a New Build of Windows 10 for Phones

Microsoft has released Windows 10 Technical Preview 2 for Phones build 10051, and as previously noted, this one is going out to a much wider range of phones than the first build we received two months ago. Here’s what you need to know to get the build as quickly as possible.

NOTE: Before there are any freakouts, Microsoft is trying to fix a bug that is preventing the build from heading out to your phones. They’re working on it. –Paul

UPDATE 2: We’re in clusterf@#k territory here, folks, sorry. Looks like it will be a couple of hours before this is fixed. –Paul

Get started

First, you need to install the Windows Insider app on the handset you wish to test and then use it to set up your phone to accept preview builds. This is straightforward: Just run the app, tap Get Preview Builds, and away you go.

Second, if you already installed the first Windows 10 build for phones (build 9941) you will need to use the Windows Phone Recovery Tool to roll back to Windows Phone 8.1 first. Then you can upgrade to this newer build.

What’s new

So, what’s new in this build? A lot, actually.

More phones. As previously noted, it works on a lot more phones. You can get the full list in my post Next Windows 10 for Phone Build is Coming on Friday, but the short version is that it’s basically every modern Lumia except the 930 and Icon.

Spartan. As with the PC versions of Windows 10, this build includes Spartan for phones. Microsoft cautions that it’s an early build, but it does use the new rendering engine and includes early versions of Reading View and Reading List. In this build, however, Spartan is not the default browser.

Mail and Calendar. This build also includes the new universal Mail and Calendar apps. These apps include the same toggle button seen on the PC where you can switch between email and calendar without first returning to the Start screen. Mail includes customizable Swipe Gestures and a new email authoring experience that uses Word. Both apps work with Office 365, Exchange, Outlook.com, Gmail, Google Calendar, Yahoo!, IMAP, POP and other online accounts.

People. The new universal People app debuts in this build with a new visual design.

Phone and Messaging. Also new are the Phone and Messaging apps. Messaging has a new visual design that lets you upgrade from a messaging conversation to a voice call with one tap of the phone icon in the new app bar. (App bar? I thought those were going away.)

Maps. The new universal Maps app debuts in this build as well. This includes maps, aerial imagery, rich local search data, and voice guided navigation from both Bing Maps and HERE Maps, integrated together for the first time into a single app.

App switcher. The app switcher has been updated to support landscape mode and can now access up to 15 recently used apps. And for larger phones like the Lumia 1520, there is a new grid layout that makes better use of the available screen real estate.

What’s broken

There are of course a number of issues with this build. Some of the bigger ones are:

No Office. Office hub has been removed in anticipation of the coming Office universal apps. But you won’t be able to open Word, Excel, PowerPoint or OneNote files in this build.

Photo upload to OneDrive might be broken. If you want to actually backup your memories to OneDrive, don’t use this build.

Some things are just wonky. Flight mode cannot be enabled, and data connections can’t be disabled.

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