Microsoft has announced a new Windows 8.1 Update at its Build 2014 developer conference. This is a big deal for developers as it brings universal apps that will work across Windows PCs, phones and tablets. It's also good news for non-touchscreen owners as mouse improvements should help here.

The update, due 8 April, will allow developers to write code for one app that works across platforms. Hopefully this will attract more developers to the Windows platform and improve both the quality and selection of apps on offer.

The taskbar on Windows 8 has also been improved along with better task switching and a mouse and keyboard friendly Start Screen. That means Metro apps now have taskbar buttons and title bars. This allows users to close and shrink apps easily using the top menu bar.

Right clicking a live tile will now offer the options to resize and unpin it on the Start screen.

PowerPoint, Excel and Word will be in apps that are touch-friendly and run across devices on release of the Windows 8.1 Update. These will include the "ribbon" interface now well known for being on the traditional Windows. 

Future apps will only need to be bought once then they will work across Windows Phone and Windows devices.

Windows 8.1 Update will be released on 8 April.