Since mid 2015 we've had Windows 10 in our lives. And rather than giant update packages - like the service packs of old - W10 has taken a more step-by-step update stance.
From the 11 April the rollout of the free-to-download Creators Update - the third major one, following November update 2015 and Anniversary update 2016 - will bring a variety of new features. Here are some of the best:
Yes, it's Paint, but not as flat-form as you may remember. Paint 3D, as its name suggests, introduces 3D modelling direct in Windows 10 - without the need for pricey software.
- Adds 3D modelling, including pre-made models from Remix 3D source
- Freehand 2D drawings (pen input, as applicable) can be made into 3D models
- Stickers can be positioned across 3D models for texture; use your own pictures
- Depth control and lighting adjustments
- Save as 3D project or 3D object, export and even 3D print
Gaming - new Broadcast and Game Mode
Gaming has been added as its own section within Settings, shown under its Xbox-branded logo. It's the centre to control gaming settings.
- Includes Game Bar and Game DVR (as per Xbox)
- Adds Broadcasting (live broadcast via Beam technology; sub-1sec latency)
- Game Mode (toggle on for gaming-focused performance; adds preference to gaming over background tasks)
Three and four finger gestures have been added - whether swipes or taps, as defined - with assignable app loading, Cortana and Action Centre launch, or to operate as the "third click" middle mouse button. Neat.
Edge browser update
Windows 10's baked-in browser adds a few new pointers.
- Tab preview, for small-scale preview of open tabs (individual rollover, plus all open tabs in a dedicated preview bar)
- "Set Aside" will save all open tabs for future reference (to the side of the browser, as the name suggests)
- Acts as e-reader: can open books, adjust font size, spacing and bookmark to pick up where left off
Photos and Film & TV apps
- Photos app adds ability to annotate pictures or video (using pen, if applicable), then export and share
- Film & TV app adds 360-degree video support, touchscreen navigation
Start Menu - adds groups of apps within Tiles
Similar to multiple apps in folders in Windows Phone (or Android/iOS), the W10 Start Menu adds the ability to add multiple apps into a single Tile. These expand when clicked so you can make a selection and more clearly see the icons. A great way to tidy up your Start Menu.
Windows Defender - new layout
Windows Defender, the section for protection and parental control, doesn't add new features, instead it introduces a new layout to make sourcing the desired information and controls all the easier. Family/parental controls, in particular, are now easier to click straight into.