Hands-On with Microsoft Movies & TV’s New Mini Mode

Posted on March 1, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Microsoft Movies & TV, Windows 10 with 10 Comments

Hands-On with Microsoft Movies & TV's New Mini Mode

Microsoft Movies & TV is the first Windows 10 app to support the new PIP-like Compact Overlay feature that is coming in the Creators Update. It’s called mini mode.

Microsoft revealed that it would be adding Compact Overlay to the Creators Update earlier this month, but it’s only recently been made available in an app for the first time. Basically, it allows apps to provide a Picture-in-Picture (PIP) type display so that the user can continue viewing video while using other apps. I joked at the time that iPad has had this functionality for years, because it has, but it’s a useful update nonetheless, of course.

To use mini mode with Movies & TV, you need both the latest version of the app and a recent build of the Creators Update. I assume it will become generally available by the time the Creators Update ships.

Here’s a quick look at how this feature works. It’s pretty straightforward.

While playing a video with the Movies & TV app, you’ll see a new “Play in mini mode” button in the bottom right of the app, next to the “Full Screen” button. This is what toggles mini mode, which is this app’s implementation of Compact Overlay.

When you toggle mini mode, the video playback switches to a smaller window with a few options—Skip back, Play/Pause, Skip forward, and Leave mini mode—which appear when you mouse over it.

You can resize the window as needed. And move it around the screen to a position you prefer.

In other words, yes, it works exactly as expected.

Microsoft noted earlier this month that Skype Preview will also take advantage of Compact Overlay in a coming update. But if you use the Skype desktop application today, you know how that one works already, since that app has supported a similar feature for years as well.


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Comments (10)

10 responses to “Hands-On with Microsoft Movies & TV’s New Mini Mode”

  1. Wizzwith

    Will wonders never cease.

  2. Chris_Kez

    Nice. I hope we see more apps support this quickly.

  3. wright_is

    Now, if only the app would play DVDs and BDs...

  4. bbold

    Finally! It's nice to see these basic settings are coming to Windows 10. If they could make Groove a stronger music player with ability to burn CD's I'd be a happy camper. And a free working DVD Player app. Speaking of Movies & TV, the Store is having a great sale right now on Academy Award winning films. I got Godfather Part I for $4.99 and a $5 Store gift card. ;)

  5. Bart

    PIP already works on the Creatures Update with Skype Preview version Very useful!

  6. rameshthanikodi

    I hope they enable this for web video in Edge. And open up the API to allow for Win32 apps like Chrome playing video to use this feature too.

  7. Sammibulin

    "Skype Preview will also take advantage."   How long has it been now since that app had a meaningful update? XD

  8. LordPhantom

    How is this any different to resizing the window? I guess it adds "always on top", but this doesn't seem like a huge leap in technology.