Microsoft is announcing new cross-platform experiences for Windows 10 at Build 2018 this week. These features, which are expected in Redstone 5, will be shown off by Joe Belfiore tomorrow during the day 2 keynote.
Your Phone is the first of these new experiences.
Microsoft is positioning Your Phone as a window to your phone from your Windows 10 PC so that your PC works better with your mobile device, even if it isn’t built by Microsoft. (And it won’t be.) The app is supposed to give users instant access to the text messages, photos, and notifications on their phone from their PC without requiring any other app.
With Your Phone, you will be able to take a photo from your phone and drop it into a document on your PC without needing to do anything else. At least that’s how Microsoft is advertising the app; we will have to wait and see if the actual functionality will live up to the promise. The company says that the new Your Phone experience will be available to Windows Insiders soon. In fact, it’s already present in the latest Insider build.
But it’s not just Your Phone. Microsoft is taking cross-platform experiences in Windows 10 a step further with updates to Microsoft Launcher on Android and Microsoft Edge on the iPhone. Redmond is bringing cross-device app launching for Timeline to Microsoft Launcher, so you’ll be able to pick up from where you left off across your devices. The company is also making it possible to access your browsing sessions stored on Timeline from your iPhone using the Edge browser.
It is important to note that this is the first Build since Windows’ former lead Terry Myerson announced his departure from the firm. And there aren’t a lot of consumer-focused Windows announcements at this year’s Build, which will be disappointing to many. But Redstone 5 is supposed to be a huge update for the OS — and so far, we are only aware of some major features such as Sets, Your Phone, the new screenshotting tool, and a dark theme (and tabs!) for File Explorer.