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Microsoft breaks into AR with Windows 10

Posted: 22 Jan 2015 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Windows 10? HoloLens? Spartan? Microsoft?

In a demonstration earlier today, Microsoft showed off Windows 10 OS's cross-device compatibility, a new browser (codenamed Spartan) and ease of use in new areas of technology, such as, yes, holographics.

"We're preparing for a world where there are more devices than people," Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said. "It's not mobility of any single device but the mobility of experience across devices," he added, which no doubt would have reminded some of Apple's Handoff.

If you are thinking that the event was just about a new operating system, you'd be both right and wrong as you will soon see. Let's first get the usual operating system specs out of the way.

Microsoft showed Windows 10 on a Lumia 1520. Joe Belfiore, who runs Microsoft's Windows phone, tablet, and PC design teams, said Windows 10 is under development with the following features.

  • Universal applications including Word, Power Point, Outlook, and Excel
  • Support for wireless printing
  • Cortana with multiple language and impression capabilities
  • More integrated IP-based messaging services
  • Auto-creation of photo albums

Microsoft has integrated DirectX 12 into Windows 10 to improve gaming and entertainment across form factors. The Xbox team head, Phil Spencer, said DirectX 12 will improve performance of CPU-bound games up to 50 per cent while cutting power consumption in half. To take advantage of this improved performance, an Xbox app will be available on all Windows 10 devices and Xbox One games will stream on any PC or phone later this year.

Lumia 1520

Figure 1: The Xbox gaming interface runs on a Lumia 1520 phone.

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