Frank Seide and Chris Basoglu of Microsoft's CNTK groupNewly updated Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit can help speed advances in deep learning

By Athima Chansanchai as written on
Microsoft has released an updated version of Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit, a system for deep learning that is used to speed advances in areas such as speech and image recognition and search relevance on CPUs and NVIDIA GPUs.
The toolkit, previously known as CNTK, was initially developed by computer scientists at Microsoft who wanted a tool to do their own research more quickly and effectively. It quickly moved beyond speech and morphed into an offering that customers, including a leading international appliance maker and Microsoft’s flagship product groups, depend on for a wide variety of deep learning tasks.
“We’ve taken it from a research tool to something that works in a production setting,” said Frank Seide, a principal researcher at Microsoft Artificial Intelligence and Research and a key architect of the Microsoft Cognitive Toolkit.
With the latest version of the toolkit, which is available on GitHub, developers can use Python or C++ programming languages in working with the toolkit.  With the new version, researchers also can do a type of artificial intelligence work called reinforcement learning.


What's changed in System Center Configuration Manager from System Center 2012 Configuration Manager

By Brent Dunshire as written on

Applies to: System Center Configuration Manager (Current Branch)

System Center Configuration Manager current branch introduces important changes from System Center 2012 Configuration Manager. The information in this topic identifies the more significant changes and new capabilities found in the baseline version 1511 of System Center Configuration Manager. To learn about additional changes that are introduced in subsequent updates for System Center Configuration Manager, see What’s new in System Center Configuration Manager incremental versions.

The December 2015 release of System Center Configuration Manager (version 1511), is the latest product release of Configuration Manager from Microsoft. It is typically referred to as System Center Configuration Manager current branch. Current branch indicates this is a version that supports incremental updates to the product and can be an important distinction between this and past releases of Configuration Manager.

With this release System Center Configuration Manager:

  • Does not use a year or product identifier in the product name, as seen with past versions like Configuration Manager 2007 or System Center 2012 Configuration Manager.
  • Supports incremental in-product updates, also called update versions. The initial release is version 1511. Subsequent versions are released several times a year as in-console updates, like version 1602 or 1606.

In-console updates for Configuration Manager

System Center Configuration Manager uses an in-console service method called Updates and Servicing that makes it easy to locate and then install recommended updates for Configuration Manager.

Some versions are only available as updates for existing sites (from within the Configuration Manager console), and cannot be used to install new Configuration Manager sites.
For example, the 1602 update is only available from within the Configuration Manager console and is used to update a site that runs a baseline version of 1511 to version 1602.

Periodically, an update version will also be released as a new baseline version (like update 1606) which can be used to install a new hierarchy without the need to start with an older baseline version (like 1511) and upgrade your way to the most current version.

For more information about using updates, see Updates for System Center Configuration Manager.

Service connection point replaces Microsoft Intune connector

The Microsoft Intune connector is replaced by a new site system role that enables additional functionality, the service connection point. The service connection point:

  • Replaces the Microsoft Intune connector when you integrate Intune with System Center Configuration Manager On-premises Mobile Device Management
  • Is used as a point of contact for devices you manage with
  • Uploads usage data about your deployment to the Microsoft cloud service
  • Makes updates that apply to your deployment available from within the Configuration Manager console

This site system role supports both an online and offline mode of operation that can affect its additional use. For more information see About the service connection point in System Center Configuration Manager.

Usage data collection

System Center Configuration Manager collects usage data about your sites and infrastructure. This information is compiled and submitted to the Microsoft cloud service by the service connection point (a new site system role) and is required to enable Configuration Manager to download updates for your deployment that apply to the version of Configuration Manager you use. When you configure the service connection point you can configure both the level of data that is collected, and whether this is submitted automatically (online mode) or manually (offline mode).

For more information see Usage data levels and settings.

Support for Intel Active Management Technology (AMT)

With System Center Configuration Manager, native support for AMT-based computers from within the Configuration Manager console has been removed.

  • AMT-based computers remain fully managed when you use the Intel SCS Add-on for Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager
  • Use of the add-on provides you access to the latest capabilities to manage AMT while removing limitations introduced until Configuration Manager could incorporate those changes
  • Out of Band Management in System Center 2012 Configuration Manager is not affected by this change

The removal of integrated AMT for System Center Configuration Manager includes:

  • The Out of Band Management point site system role is no longer used nor available

Deprecated functionality

With System Center Configuration Manager, some capabilities, like native Support for Intel Active Management Technology (AMT) based-computers is removed from the Configuration Manager console, while other capabilities like Network Access Protection are removed entirely. Additionally, some older Microsoft products like Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, and SQL Server 2008, are no longer supported.

For a list of deprecated features, see Removed and deprecated features for System Center Configuration Manager.

For details about supported products, operating systems, and configurations, see Supported configurations for System Center Configuration Manager.

Client deployment

System Center Configuration Manager introduces a new capability for testing new versions of the Configuration Manager client before upgrading the rest of site with the new software. This new capability gives you the opportunity to set up a preproduction collection in which to pilot a new client. Once you are satisfied with the new client software in preproduction, you can promote the client to automatically upgrade the rest of the site with the new version.

For more information on how to test clients, see How to test client upgrades in a preproduction collection in System Center Configuration Manager.

Operating system deployment

  • A new task sequence type is available in the Create Task Sequence Wizard,  Upgrade an operating system from upgrade package, that creates the steps to upgrade computers from Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 8.1 to Windows 10. For more information, see Upgrade Windows to the latest version with System Center Configuration Manager.
  • Windows PE Peer Cache is now available when you deploy operating systems. Computers that run a task sequence to deploy an operating system can use Windows PE Peer Cache to obtain content from a local peer (a peer cache source) instead of downloading content from a distribution point. This helps minimize wide area network (WAN) traffic in branch office scenarios where there is no local distribution point. For more information, see Prepare Windows PE peer cache to reduce WAN traffic in System Center Configuration Manager.
  • You can now view the state of Windows as a Service in your environment, create servicing plans to form deployment rings and ensure that Windows 10 current branch computers are kept up to date when new builds are released, and view alerts when Windows 10 clients are near end of support for their build of Current Branch (CB) or Current Branch for Business (CBB). For more information, see Manage Windows as a service using System Center Configuration Manager.

Application management

  • System Center Configuration Manager lets you deploy Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps for devices running Windows 10 and later. See Creating Windows applications with System Center Configuration Manager.
  • Software Center has a new, modern look and apps that previously only appeared in the Application Catalog (user-available apps) now appear in Software Center under the Applications tab. This makes these deployments more discoverable to users and removes the need for them to use the Application Catalog. Additionally, a Silverlight enabled browser is no longer required. See Plan for and configure application management in System Center Configuration Manager.
  • The new Windows Installer through MDM application type lets you create and deploy Windows Installer-based apps to enrolled PCs that run Windows 10. See Creating Windows applications with System Center Configuration Manager.
  • When you create an application for an in-house iOS app you only need to specify the installer (.ipa) file for the app. You no longer need to specify a corresponding property list (.plist) file. See Creating iOS applications with System Center Configuration Manager.
  • In Configuration Manager 2012, to specify a link to an app in the Windows Store, you could either specify the link directly, or browse to a remote computer that had the app installed. In System Center Configuration Manager, you can still enter the link directly, but now, instead of browsing to a reference computer, you can now browse the store for the app directly from the Configuration Manager console.

Software updates

  • System Center Configuration Manager can now differentiate a Windows 10 computer that connects to Windows Update for Business (WUfB) for software update management versus the computers connected to WSUS for software update management. The UseWUServerattribute is new and specifies whether the computer is managed with WUfB. You can use this setting in a collection to remove these computers from software update management. For more information, see Integration with Windows Update for Business in Windows 10.
  • You can now schedule and run the WSUS clean up task from the Configuration Manager console.
    You can now manually run the WSUS cleanup task from in Software Update Point Component properties. When you select to run the WSUS cleanup task, it will run at the next software updates synchronization. The expired software updates will be set to a status of declined on the WSUS server and the Windows Update Agent on computers will no longer scan these software updates. For more information, see Schedule and run the WSUS clean up task.

Compliance settings

  • System Center Configuration Manager introduces an improved workflow for creating configuration items. Now, when you create a configuration item, and select supported platforms, only the settings relevant to that platform are available. See Get started with compliance settings in System Center Configuration Manager.
  • The create configuration item wizard now makes it easier to choose the configuration item type you want to create. Additionally, new and updated configuration items are available for:
    • Windows 10 devices managed with the Configuration Manager client
    • Mac OS X devices managed with the Configuration Manager client
    • Windows desktop and server computers managed with the Configuration Manager client
    • Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 devices managed without the Configuration Manager client
    • Windows Phone devices managed without the Configuration Manager client
    • iOS and Mac OS X devices managed without the Configuration Manager client
    • Android and Samsung KNOX Standard devices managed without the Configuration Manager clientSee How to create configuration items in System Center Configuration Manager.
  • Support for managing settings on Mac OS X computers that are either enrolled with Microsoft Intune or managed using the Configuration Manager client. See How to create configuration items for iOS and Mac OS X devices managed without the System Center Configuration Manager client.

Protect data and site infrastructure

  • System Center Configuration Manager lets you integrate with Windows Hello for Business (formerly Microsoft Passport for Work) which is an alternative sign-in method that uses Active Directory, or an Azure Active Directory account to replace a password, smart card, or virtual smart card on devices running Windows 10. See Windows Hello for Business settings in System Center Configuration Manager.

Mobile device management with Microsoft Intune

System Center Configuration Manager introduces improvements to the mobile device management experience including:

  • Limit the number of devices a user can enroll
  • Specify terms and conditions users of the Company Portal must accept before they can enroll or use the app
  • Added a device enrollment manager role to help manage large numbers of devices

For more information about mobile device management capabilities with Configuration Manager and Intune, see Hybrid mobile device management (MDM) with System Center Configuration Manager and Microsoft Intune.

On-premises Mobile Device Management

With System Center Configuration Manager, you can now manage mobile devices using on-premises Configuration Manager infrastructure. All device management and management data is handled on-premises and is not part of Microsoft Intune or other cloud services. This type of device management doesn't require client software since the capabilities that Configuration Manager uses to manage the devices are built into the device operating systems.

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Configuration Manager: a progress update on the current branch and a new servicing branch

As written on
Today, 101 years ago, the Ford Motor Company manufactured its 1 millionth Model T automobile. Thanks to our customers, we also have a reason to celebrate today as we are continuing to see an incredible adoption of our own model, the current branch of Configuration Manager. Our current branch model was designed to provide our customers with ongoing product improvements, faster updates, and timely support for new Windows releases.
Since the release of the current branch in December of 2015, over 21,000 organizations managing more than 43 million devices have transformed client management for their organizations by upgrading to Configuration Manager 1511 or later, allowing them to  keep their management tools up to date at an unprecedented rate and scale. With three current branch releases to date, the move to later versions is accelerating: more than half of these organizations have already updated to the latest version 1606. In the wake of this strong customer adoption, we are including the latest version of Configuration Manager in newly released System Center 2016 for server management, and at the same time we are introducing a new branch type.
In short, System Center Configuration Manager (version 1606) is now included with System Center 2016. Our customers can now upgrade Configuration Manager 2012/R2 directly to version 1606 of the current branch and start taking advantage of new management features, faster and easier updates, support for new Windows releases, and more. For the overwhelming majority of our customers, the current branch of Configuration Manager will be their preferred installation option, and we have seen this further validated by the upgrade momentum we noted above.
Today, we are also making available the Long-Term Servicing Branch (LTSB) of Configuration Manager. Up until this point, if Software Assurance or equivalent subscription rights (most normally from Intune or EMS) became expired, customers, per product terms, would have to move back to the most recent release they owned perpetual rights to, e.g., System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager. The LTSB of Configuration Manager now delivers an alternative option that will be supported on a fixed 10-year lifecycle, although it is important to understand the limitations inherent in a long-term serviced management product vs. the easily updatable current branch model our customers have been rapidly moving to.
While the LTSB is derived from the current branch of Configuration Manager (version 1606), it is scaled back and reduced in functionality to permit the extended support model. LTSB of Configuration Manager will not receive new functionality or support for new Windows 10 and Windows Server releases. It will continue to receive security updates only. By design, LTSB of Configuration Manager is intended to be fixed in functionality and very infrequently updated, so any features or components that require continuous updating or are tied to a cloud service have been removed. These removed features include:
  • Support for Windows 10 Current Branch (CB) and Current Branch for Business (CBB)
  • Support for the future releases of Windows 10 LTSB and Windows Server
  • Windows 10 Servicing Dashboard and Servicing Plans
  • The ability to add a Microsoft Intune Subscription, which prevents the use of Hybrid MDM and on-premises MDM
  • Asset Intelligence
  • Cloud-based Distribution Point
  • Support for Exchange Online as an Exchange Connector
  • Any pre-release features available in the current branch of Configuration Manager
Based on the strong adoption of the current branch of Configuration Manager, positive feedback from our customers, and the future of Windows and the industry in general shifting to more frequent and smaller updates, we highly recommend our customers continue upgrading to the current branch of Configuration Manager. We expect that for the overwhelming majority of you this is the best model and approach of delivering an up to date management offering.
Configuration Manager (version 1606) can be downloaded from Volume Licensing Service Center (search for “System Center Config”). It can also be downloaded from Microsoft Evaluation Center and MSDN. The setup process of Configuration Manager (version 1606) allows you to choose to install either the current branch or LTSB.


Automatic albums, improved search, Pokémon and more updates to the OneDrive photos experience

By Dougals Pearce as written on

Photos are one of the most popular and most important file types that our users save to OneDrive. We’ve been working on improving the OneDrive photos experience across the web and in our mobile apps.
Here’s a look at new features we are rolling out:

Automatic albums

You upload photos to OneDrive so you can easily find and relive memories—whether from another device or by sharing them with friends and family. With automatic albums, this experience is now even easier.

OneDrive detects whenever you take a few photos in a short period of time, in a particular location. The highest quality photos are then selected and put into an album. You are even notified when they’re ready to view and share on, in our mobile apps or via the Windows 10 Photos app. In addition, to celebrate all of the fun stuff you do over the weekend, on Monday morning albums from your weekend photos are automatically created.

On this day…

On, you’ll also see the new “On this day” view in your All photos page. We love discovering photos we’ve taken in the past, and this view updates every day with images you have taken over the years on that same day. It’s a great way to relive birthdays or anniversaries or to remember old family vacations.

Improved search

You can now search directly from the All photos view too. This includes finding photos that have been tagged (such as “cat” or “sunset”) or photos from a specific location (try your last vacation). You can even search using emojis. These searches also work in the OneDrive mobile apps.

Photo folders

We listened to your feedback and now have a dedicated view for your folders that have a lot of photos in them. The new photos view includes a hero image, larger thumbnails and a revised menu to help you quickly create an album or share photos.

OneDrive photos experience 4

Updated app experience

In addition to giving the photos view in our mobile apps a little bit of a facelift, we worked closely with the Windows team to improve the experience in the Windows 10 Photos app. Now, when you sign in to Windows 10 with your Microsoft account, all of your OneDrive photos show up—including albums that were created for you automatically by OneDrive! You can even upload local albums to OneDrive so that those albums roam with you and are available across all your devices.

Automatic albums improved search Pokémon and more updates to the OneDrive photos experience image 5

Poké detector

And finally, we know that the Pokémon* craze has captured everyone’s attention. A lot of players take screenshots of their captured Pokémon to show off to their friends—both digitally and in person. We had to make it easier for you to find all your Pokémon screenshots, so we went to work and partnered with Microsoft Research to bring a Pokémon detector to OneDrive.

When you have the OneDrive app on your phone and camera upload is turned on, the screenshots you take from the game are automatically saved to OneDrive and 150 Pokémon are identified for your searching and viewing pleasure. You can also search for your favorite Pokémon by name.


Productivity and inclusion—Office 365 accessibility update

By John Jendrezak as written on
Over the past year, hundreds of engineers from the Office 365 team have been working hard to make progress towards the plans outlined in our 2016 accessibility roadmap. Key enhancements releasing this quarter bring us closer to two goals:
  • People with disabilities can communicate, consume and create content on any device.,/li>
  • Everyone can easily create content that is accessible for all people.

As we make Office 365 accessible by design and make it easy for everyone to create accessible content, we hope that people of all abilities will feel empowered to achieve more with our productivity technologies, have equal access to digital information and have fulfilling interactions with each other.

Here are some of the key accessibility improvements releasing this quarter:

Screen reader usability improvements in Word, Outlook and SharePoint

Narrator—our built-in screen reader—received several key updates as part of the recent Windows 10 anniversary update. These included new voices that can speak up to 800 words per minute, six levels of verbosity, so you can get varying indications of text properties and control over how much punctuation you hear, and verbal hints when automatic suggestions are available.

The Office 365 team continues to work closely with the Narrator team to enhance productivity experiences for screen reader users. While using the latest version of Word for the PC and Windows Store apps with Narrator, you might have already noticed improvements in documents with tables, lists, images and hyperlinks. With the latest version of Outlook for the PC, you will now find it easier to manage your calendar, use the Scheduling Assistant to set up a meeting with others, search for an email and set up signatures for your account. Learn more about accessibility enhancements in Outlook for PCs in this article and review this support article to get started with Narrator.


In SharePoint Online, you will notice improved screen reader experiences as the most used features have been made accessible by design. The new SharePoint home page in Office 365 includes headings for easy navigation across the major areas of the page, a new “search as you type” experience that alerts screen readers when there are matches found and improved navigation of sites by either table commands if using JAWS or arrow keys for all other screen readers.

Document Libraries now includes headings for easy navigation across the major areas of the page, keyboard shortcuts for all major functions that can be viewed in the app by pressing ? and the ability to navigate lists of files and folders using arrow keys similar to Windows Explorer. Screen reader users can now hear announcements when uploads are in progress and confirmations for actions within Document Libraries. Similar enhancements are coming in SharePoint Lists as well.


High Contrast mode allows people with vision impairments to see data more clearly

In May, I shared details about work underway to make Office 365 more usable with High Contrast themes on PCs, which is critical to ensure that the people with vision impairments, such as cataracts, can interact with data and commands in our applications with less eye strain. Since then, if you have been working in Excel Online on a PC with High Contrast enabled, you’ll notice that tables, active cell and cells-selection outlines are more visible, hyperlinks in sheets are respecting High Contrast theme colors and Sparkline, slicers, shapes and charts are rendered using High Contrast theme colors.


Proofing and Learning Tools enable people with dyslexia to read and write more effectively

Recently, we announced Editor, a cloud-based advanced proofing and editing service. People with dyslexia who have tried spell-checking with Editor have observed significant improvements, including the ability to find spelling corrections even when the misspelled word is very different from the intended word. More Editor enhancements are coming in the next few months for Word on PCs—all inspired by the needs of people with dyslexia and beneficial for everybody. In particular, Editor will make it easier to choose between suggested spellings for a misspelled word. Synonyms or definitions will be shown alongside suggestions and it will be possible to have both read aloud.


Recently, we also made Learning Tools for OneNote generally available. Learning Tools now gives you the ability to dictate text in Spanish, French, German and Italian and have text read back to you in multiple languages. Download Learning Tools for free and see if it transforms your reading experience as it did for these students with dyslexia.

Accessibility Checker available in Office for Mac and more

We know that some of you prefer to check and fix the accessibility of your content after you finish authoring it and find tools, such as the Accessibility Checker for Office on PCs, helpful to identify areas in your files with images or videos that are missing alternative text. You now have the ability to run the Accessibility Checker from more places including, Word, Excel and PowerPoint apps for Mac and Sway web and Windows Store apps. We are working to offer this capability for Word, Excel and PowerPoint Online apps and Outlook for PCs and Macs next. In apps where Accessibility Checker has been available for many years such as Word, Excel and PowerPoint for PCs, we are making it easier to discover and use.


Export as tagged PDF from Word for Mac and more

This month, we also made available a highly requested ask from the Microsoft Accessibility Forum: Word applications for Mac now give you the ability to export documents as tagged PDFs and will soon be in conformance with the PDF/UA standard. We are working to offer this capability for Excel and PowerPoint apps for Mac next.


Ways for you to get more information

Eager to learn more about Accessibility Enhancements in Office 365 in person? Join us at the Microsoft Ignite conference next month in Atlanta for these sessions on Office 365 Accessibility Enhancements, SharePoint Online Accessibility and Strategies for an Inclusive Workplace. (Sessions will also be recorded and available to stream online.)

Responsible for ensuring that the products your organization develops or purchases meet accessibility requirements? You can now get conformance statements that demonstrate how Office 365 applications such as Delve, OneDrive, Outlook, Publisher, SharePoint, Sway and Yammer conform to the accessibility criteria of modern accessibility standards via our new pages for WCAG 2.0 AA reports and EN 301 549 reports. Voluntary Product Accessibility Templates continue to be published at the existing page for US Section 508 VPATs. Reports for more Office 365 applications will be added to these pages in the coming months as we make progress towards our publicly committed plans to meet the requirements of modern accessibility standards across the suite by the end of 2016.

Interested in getting help with accessibility issues? Visit the new Office Accessibility Center to find support articles on creating accessible content with Office 365 applications on various platforms or on using Office 365 applications with specific assistive technologies. If you require further assistance, reach out to an accessibility specialist via the Enterprise Disability Answer Desk or Consumer Disability Answer Desk.

How you can get these enhancements

You can start leveraging the capabilities described in this post to make you digital environment more accessible and inclusive by getting Office 365. Many more accessibility enhancements are coming to Office 365 apps by the end of the year and you can be the first to get access to these by signing up for Office Insider or First Release options with Office 365.


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Microsoft Edge and Continuum: Your desktop browser on Mobile

By Balaji Bhaskar as written on
Continuum for Phones, available on select Windows 10 Mobile devices, allows customers to connect their phone to a monitor, projector, or TV for a full-sized desktop experience, powered by their phone. Because Microsoft Edge is built on the Universal Windows Platform, Microsoft Edge in Continuum is able to provide a full desktop browser experience.
Let’s walk through a quick overview of how Continuum works and a few key differences between Microsoft Edge running in Continuum and on a PC.

Using Continuum on Windows 10 Mobile

Continuum allows Windows 10 Mobile users to have a PC-like experience when connected to an external display and a mouse and keyboard. When connected (via a wired dock or via Bluetooth and Miracast), Universal Windows Apps like Office and Microsoft Edge will adapt their interface and behavior to provide a desktop-like experience tailored to mouse and keyboard input.
Check out the Continuum product page, FAQ, and Getting Started Guide to learn more about Continuum.

Microsoft Edge on Continuum

Microsoft Edge takes full advantage of the Universal Windows Platform to provide a complete desktop-like experience in Continuum — when the device is connected to a larger display, Microsoft Edge turns into a desktop browser, adapting the interface and rendering characteristics to match Microsoft Edge on PCs.
In fact, Microsoft Edge in Continuum is nearly indistinguishable from its PC twin, which is a fun party trick when presenting at events or in meetings!


Screen capture showing Microsoft Edge open to in Continuum mode on a display connected to a Windows 10 phone.

To enable an experience that’s as true to the desktop equivalent as possible, there are a couple of important things to keep in mind.

One rendering engine

Because Microsoft Edge uses the same engine across all Windows 10 devices, the rendering behavior is the same across Windows 10 devices, including Windows 10 Mobile devices. The only differences are due to certain device-specific qualities – for example, codec support may be different on phones due to missing hardware acceleration, and Flash is not supported on Windows 10 Mobile. Because Windows 10 Mobile has a different background model, RTC is also currently not supported. Finally, Windows 10 Mobile does not support Flash in order to provide a modern, touch-focused, and power-efficient experience appropriate for a mobile device. Because of this, Flash is not supported in Microsoft Edge in Continuum.

Details for web developers

Developers in general won’t have to give any special consideration to Microsoft Edge in Continuum. By design, it will behave like a desktop client, including sending a desktop User-Agent string.
As always, we recommend that you don’t try to detect based on the User Agent string — if you use responsive design and feature detection, your site should just work on Continuum. However, for some cases, including analytics or to provide a specifically tailored experience, developers may wish to detect when Microsoft Edge is running in Continuum.
In Continuum, Microsoft Edge changes a few tokens to make sure it gets desktop markup:

Microsoft Edge UA (Mobile)

Mozilla/5.0 (Windows Phone 10.0; Android 6.0.1; Microsoft; <Device>) AppleWebKit/<Rev (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/<Rev> Mobile Safari/<Rev> Edge/<Rev>

Microsoft Edge UA (Continuum)

Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; ARM) AppleWebKit/<Rev> (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/<Rev> Safari/<Rev> Edge/<Rev>

Microsoft Edge UA (Desktop)

Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; Win64; x64) AppleWebKit/<Rev> (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/<Rev> Safari/<Rev> Edge/<Rev>
The revision numbers will, as in all browsers, change regularly as Microsoft Edge is updated, to ensure modern markup is received.

Independent scroll

Running desktop sites on phone is challenging, so we’ve made optimizations in the Anniversary Update to tailor performance to provide a more desktop-like experience. On PCs, Microsoft Edge offloads scrolling from the UI thread to provide a more fluid scrolling experience during page load/painting. In the Anniversary Update, this same feature is now supported in Continuum, even when scrolling via the mouse or keyboard. This results in a smoother experience even while the page is loading or painting.

Switching from mobile to desktop

Microsoft Edge will recognize when a phone switches into Continuum and any sites opened after the switch will render using desktop behavior, including the desktop UA string.
If a tab is open to a mobile site, and the device switches to Continuum, the tab will be sustained. If the tab is refreshed, and it isn’t a mobile-specific URL, it will reload in a desktop view. This ensures that users do not lose unsaved changes (such as a partially-filled form) on a site while switching from the phone to Continuum.
We’re committed to making Continuum as close to the desktop experience as possible without adding any additional overhead for Web Developers – try it out on a Windows 10 Mobile device and let us know what you think! If you have questions or are curious how your site looks in Continuum, reach out to @MSEdgeDev on Twitter, and we’d be happy to help.



All Windows 10 PCs will get Windows Holographic access next year

By Darrell Etherington as written on
Windows 10 users will be able to dive into mixed reality starting next year, with an update planned that can let any “mainstream” Windows 10 PC run the Windows Holographic shell the company first revealed in January 2015.
The update will allow users to multi-task in mixed reality environments, which combine traditional 2D Windows 10 apps with immersive, 3D graphical environments. These will be enabled via a range of “6 degrees of freedom devices,” input devices that add positional tracking to other more traditional forms of input, like clicking and pointing.
The Windows team is trying to make this more broadly available, too, thanks to support for a range of Windows 10 PCs that don’t necessarily need the specs required to run full-scale VR today. As an example, Microsoft presented a video of Windows 10 Holographic running at 90 FPS on an Intel NUC, a tiny desktop PC that’s not super expensive and included integrated Intel graphics.
While it’s still unlikely that we’ll all be doing our average desk workflow of spreadsheets and slide presentation in mixed reality any time soon, it’s good to see Microsoft set a timeline for public availability of a feature which, at launch, seems like it had the potential to become vaporware rather than a shipping product.
Intel and Microsoft are also building a specification for mixed reality PCs, as well as head-mounted displays that let users experience the mixed reality operating environment. The public release of the spec is planned for an upcoming Windows hardware develop conference in Shenzhen this December.



Minecraft comes to VR today with Windows 10 Edition beta

By Darrell Etherington as written on
Minecraft is now ready for its virtual reality debut: The update for the Minecraft Windows 10 Beta that adds VR support is available today. It’s a free update for people who already own the Windows 10 Edition Beta version of the game, but you can also get on board if you purchase the beta edition now.
There’s support for windows and mice, if you’re good enough at operating those without being able to see them, but there’s also support for the Xbox One controller, which you can use either plugged in via micro USB on Windows 10, or in tandem with the wireless Xbox One Controller for Windows adapter.
Microsoft says they’ve done a lot to ensure a range of players with a range of systems can get the most out of their VR experience, thanks to VR-specific customization options designed to maximize performance or help increase player comfort. Early impressions from people with preview access seem to enjoy what Mojang and Microsoft have put together for this, however, so go check it out if you have the necessary kit.


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