Windows 10 October update is finally now available
Windows 10 is one of Microsoft’s finest operating systems to date, although it’s not without its problems (I’m looking at you, Windows Update). Now the Windows 10 October Update is out in the wild, Microsoft is aiming to improve its Windows 10 experience even further by improving productivity tools and adding some welcome features to improve everyone’s lives.
Released into the wild during Microsoft’s 2 October Surface event – where it unveiled the Surface Pro 6 and Surface Laptop 2 – the Windows 10 October Update comes with a slew of new features. Pegged as the major Windows 10 update for the year, Microsoft has used it to issue a slew of bug fixes and quality-of-life improvements. However, some people may not be too keen on the fact it’s also been used to kill off the popular Windows Disk Cleanup Utility tool for good.
Alongside the death of the Disk Cleanup, Microsoft is actually introducing a really neat cloud-powered clipboard to let you copy content across machines. Not only is this useful if you work across your business and home Windows 10 computers frequently, but it also means there’s a stored history of what you’ve copied so, if you happen to lose your clipboard, you’ve got a copy saved in the cloud automatically so you can retrieve it.
Microsoft has also made improvements to Windows 10’s Timeline feature – which syncs app history across devices. Now Chrome and Firefox can tap into Timeline and sync tabs and starting in November Microsoft Edge will also get beta Timeline support without the need for a separate extension to make it work. You can also access Timeline via Microsoft Launcher on Android to sync more content between your Android phone and Windows 10.
On that thread, Microsoft is also looking to other ways it can more tightly integrate Windows 10 with Android and iOS. The solution, a “Your Phone” app that lets you sync photos taken, send and receive text messages and even run windowed versions of your phone’s apps. Most features are currently Android-only, but Microsoft says it’s working towards parity on Android and iOS.
One other feature that Microsoft doesn’t seem to be shouting about, but Nvidia certainly is, is native support for ray tracing as part of DirectX 12. In the Windows 10 October Update users of Nvidia’s latest RTX cards can actually make use of its ray tracing capabilities without having to jump through hoops – a first for Microsoft’s DirectX systems.
For developers this means there’s now a dedicated ray tracing DX12 API to utilise, meaning updating their games will be more straightforward. For gamers, this means games will run smoothly and utilise the actual power of the RTX cards they just forked out for. Windows 10 also natively supports ray tracing now too, applications that need it can launch without the need to fumble around with setup protocols ahead of time.
With the Windows 10 October 2018 Update now rolling out to Windows 10 users everywhere, fans are looking to what comes next. Slated to land in March 2019 is the next big Windows 10 Update, 19H1. So far literally nothing is known about 19H1, but once the dust has settled around the October Update and new Surface devices, Microsoft is likely to tease us with new features.