Microsoft released a new Windows 10 preview build to insiders yesterday on the fast ring. Build 14279 brings a lot of enhancements to Cortana, Microsoft’s digital assistant. For starters, Cortana will be available in Spanish for Mexico, in Portuguese for Brazil, and in French for Canada.
For each new market and language, the Cortana Team works to develop a custom experience that is relevant in each individual market and language. For instance, in Brazil – Cortana is fond of pasteis which is a common food found in many regions across Brazil. And in Mexico, we added local flavor to reflect the accent and language of the country. But our work is never complete and a big part of our development process is getting feedback from you.
Cortana will now also be capable of setting smart reminders. You might say “remind me to read [book name]” or other such reminders that can be tracked even if you don’t have the specific details like location, time, or people.
Beyond Cortana, Windows is flattening the lock screen and the logon screen background to be the same image. The setting will now affect both images. If you set a lock screen image, that is the same image that you will see behind the logon prompt. Windows Spotlight (the feature that was showing Tomb Raider ads earlier) are currently exempt from the feature as they work on “additional tweaks”.
Performance of typing Japanese IME has been improved to be smoother and with extended prediction content.
Sway has been integrated with the Photos app. You can click the ‘Tell your story with Sway’ button and have Sway automatically assemble your photos with prompts for headers and captions to tell your story on the web and ready for sharing. For more details, see the dedicated announcement post.
The beta Xbox app was updated for March with new features like a Gamerscore leaderboard and an updated ‘Featured’ section. Xbox Wire has a post on this update to discuss the 16-person party chat and other new features.
Other fixes and known issues with this build, according to the announcement post, include:
Here’s what’s fixed for PC
- We fixed an issue where Microsoft Edge and Cortana were crashing for users with roaming profiles. This will address it for users going forward, however if you’re currently impacted by this issue, please see this forum post.
- We fixed an issue where Cortana would continue to show reminders that have been completed.
- We fixed an issue where items copied/moved to the desktop would not display until the desktop is manually refreshed by right-clicking on the desktop and choosing “Refresh” or pressing F5.
- We fixed an issue where downloading certain drivers from Windows Update was causing some PCs to bluescreen.
Known issues for PC
- We’re investigating an issue in which some Surface Pro 3, Surface Pro 4, and Surface Book devices experience a freeze or hang and all input such as keyboard/trackpad and touch do not work. The workaround is to hold down the power button to force the device to hard-reboot.
- We are continuing to track several issues reported by Insiders where some PCs will freeze or bluescreen when resuming from hibernation. Disabling hibernation is a workaround in some cases until this is fixed.
- If you have Kaspersky Anti-Virus, Internet Security, or the Kaspersky Total Security Suite installed on your PC there is a known driver bug that prevents these programs from working as expected in builds from the Development Branch. We are partnering with Kaspersky to fix this issue for a future release, but at this time there are no known workarounds. While this issue is present, we recommend using Windows Defender or another third party anti-virus product of your choice to remain protected.
- Turning on the “always show all icons in the notification area” setting disrupts the layout of the notification area (“systray”). Your notification area will look out of alignment.
- We are seeing reports of crashes with apps such as QQ crashing due to an OS reliability issue we are currently investigating. This bug is also impacting older apps such as Windows Live Mail and Expression Encoder 4.
- Connectivity to older Wi-Fi networks using the WEP encryption security method may be broken. WEP is an insecure method for protecting your Wi-Fi connection but a small percentage of Windows users still use it. A workaround would be to configure your wireless routers to use WPA or WPA2 or wait for the next Insider flight when this is fixed.