Build 2015 Round-up: Microsoft Edge, Continuum and HoloLens
May 1, 2015 Chris Caldwell 0 Comments
Microsoft Build is going on right now in San Francisco, this is the conference that MS hold for developers and as such they’re releasing a lot of interesting stuff and adding some meat to the bones they revealed about windows 10 earlier in the year.
It’s all about the Universal apps, these are apps that run on any system you have. So the same app runs on PC, Phone, Tablet and Xbox. No more separate apps for different platforms, as such they’ve announced that they expect to have these apps on 1 Billion devices in 3 years, a lucrative prospect for developers. Also announced where Project Islandwood and Project Astoria. Essentially what these do is allow the reusing of existing code to port apps for Android and iOS over to windows (with only minor changes needed), and to demonstrate this they showed off Candy Crush on windows that had been ported over using these tools.
Edge, Continuum and Hololens
Also officially announced was MS first new web browser in decades, the previously named Project Spartan has officially became Microsoft Edge, Bye Bye Internet Explorer!. It shows off some impressive benchmarks and also confirmed support for extensions that can be used in the same way as Chrome currently does, has Cortana, note taking and reading views built in. Continuum for phones was revealed as a way to use you Windows Phone as a fully fledged PC (within reason i’m guessing). the premise of this is that you can connect your windows phone to a monitor/TV, keyboard and mouse and use your apps as you would on a PC. As they’re universal apps they look as they would on a regular desktop rather than scaling up the phone view. So far all office apps and MS native apps are confirmed for this feature and it looks pretty nifty for getting work done on the go.
Hololens continues to be the ‘exciting peek into the future’ at these events and MS weren’t shy about showing off their latest toy even more. They revealed that that Hololens is included in the Universal App strategy, so when developing an app for Windows considering Hololens is a must. They showed off some coding for Hololens too which showed that coding for this is no different than coding for Windows Phone or the Xbox. A demo was done with a medical student who could use the Hololens to study human anatomy and peer through the different layers, a pretty cool demo and a taste of the medical benefits that this could offer in the future.
Windows 10 for PC’s etc is expected in July and for phones in October, with this in mind MS were able to demo a lot more of their latest OS. They showed it running in Raspberry Pi, which is a cool feat for such a low spec device. They showed more of how deeply Cortana is integrated into the OS covering everything from finding files to sending a message via viber to tell a buddy you’ll be late with a call of ‘Hey Cortana’. Spotlight is a new feature that is used to highlight apps and features you may find interesting on you lock screen then lets you interact with them directly. Lastly (to a great cheer) the start bar is back with new Win10 using a mix of Windows 8 and windows 7 that looks very appealing. Best of all the upgrade to Windows 10 will be absolutely FREE!
Of course there was plenty more revealed, Windows 10 news, coding news, Azure etc. but I thought these were the most exciting developments and for more info you can check out the other videos MS have posted!