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Build 2018: Windows 10 hits 700 million active devices, ‘Your Phone’ app, DJI partnership, and more

From Windows 10 approaching 700 million active users to a new 'Your Phone' app, here's a look at a few of the biggest announcements from Microsoft's annual Build developer conference.

Written by Anuj Bhatia | New Delhi |
Updated: May 8, 2018 12:18:02 pm
Build 2018, Microsoft Build 2018, Satya Nedella, Windows 10, Your Phone app for Windows 10, Azure, DJI Build 2018, Qualcomm Build 2018, Alexa Cortana integration, iOS, Android, Windows 10 timeline, Microsoft HoloLens Microsoft Layout Microsoft Remote Assist, Mixed Reality Microsoft Build 2018 Day 1 highlights: Windows 10 powers 700 million devices, ‘Your Phone’ app, DJI partnership, Cortana-Alexa integration, and more.

Microsoft has made several high-profile announcements on the first day of its annual Build conference in Seattle. This year’s developer conference, in particular, focused on artificial intelligence (AI), intelligent cloud, Mixed reality, and improving cross-platform experiences. Here’s a look at a few of the biggest announcements from Microsoft’s annual Build developer conference. Build 2018 will run from May 7 to May 8 in Seattle.

Build 2018: 700 million devices now run Windows 10

At its Build developer conference, Microsoft announced that “nearly” 700 million devices now run Windows 10 – the company’s latest operating system. Almost a year back, the company said that there were 500 million active devices. The figure is encouraging but is far from reaching the 1 billion mark by 2018. In addition, the company also announced that Office 365 now has 135 million monthly active users, up from 120 million users.

Build 2018: A renewed focus on phones

Microsoft may not be making smartphones anymore, but it says the focus has been on phones. Perhaps why it has launched a new “Your Phone'” for Windows 10 at its Build 2018 developer conference.  So essentially, the app is designed to mirror your phone to the PC. The idea behind the app is to access the phones’ content –  be it text messages, notifications, or photos  – right on Windows 10-powered desktop or laptop. Microsoft says it will start testing its ‘Your Phone’ app with Windows Insiders in May 2018.

Also readGoogle I/O 2018: Android P, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to be focus

Build 2018: Alexa and Cortana integration

After it announced a partnership with Amazon last year, Microsoft showed off how its Cortana digital assistant will integrate with Alexa. This integration simply means that Amazon Alexa users will be able to access Cortana and Cortana users will get access Alexa.

At Build 2018, Microsoft demonstrated the two digital assistants working with each other. Each assistant is good at different things and the Cortana Alexa integration will benefit users at the end of the day.

Build 2018: Mixed reality to get collaborative features 

Microsoft’s Mixed reality is getting new features that will allow users to collaborate at work. The first feature is Remote Assist through which customers can collaborate remotely with heads-up, hands-free video calling, and image sharing.

The other feature, Microsoft Layout, lets customers design spaces in mixed reality. They can create 3-D models to create room layouts in real-world scale, experience designs as high-quality holograms in physical space, and then share and edit with stakeholders in real time. Microsoft says both features will be first available to businesses and frontline workers.

Also readMicrosoft Build 2018: AI, intelligent cloud will create new opportunities for developers

Build 2018: DJI  partnership

At its Build developer conference, Microsoft announced that DJI, the world’s most popular drone maker, has partnered with the Redmond-based company to create a new SDK for Windows 10 PCs.

The SDK will bring full flight control and real-time data transfer to all Windows 10 connected devices. It also announced that DJI has selected Azure as its preferred cloud provider to further its commercial drone and SaaS solutions.

Build 2018: Project Kinect for Azure

Microsoft is bringing Kinect back, and this time for AI developers. At the annual developer conference, Microsoft announced Project Kinect for Azure. The company says the new Kinect will come with a package of sensors and the next-generation depth camera, designed for AI on the Edge.

Project Kinect for Azure unlocks countless new opportunities to take advantage of Machine Learning, Cognitive Services, and IoT Edge”, Microsoft’s Alex Kipman explained in a blog post on Linkedin. Kinect was launched as a motion controller for the Xbox 360, in 2010. In its initial days, it struggled to captivate consumer attention and, later Microsoft announced a Windows version of Kinect. The Xbox One also got the Kinect support, but last year Microsoft decided to discontinue the accessory.

 

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