Tag Archives: Cortana

Tracking your fitness goals just got easier with the Fitbit skill for Cortana

Earlier in May, we announced the public preview of the Cortana Skills Kit, which allows developers to easily create intelligent, personalized experiences for users of Cortana in the US*. Today, we’re pleased to share that the latest skill on Cortana is available, from our partners at Fitbit. With the new Fitbit skill for Cortana, you can easily monitor your health and fitness goals – just by asking Cortana. Users can access the Fitbit skill across devices and platforms, starting with Windows 10, Android and iOS and soon on the Harman Kardon Invoke speaker.

Fitbit is the leading global wearables brand with more than 50M registered users across the world. Fitbit’s health and fitness trackers and software are compatible across Windows 10, Android and iOS platforms, and offers the widest range of easy-to-use, smart and motivational tools that keep users engaged to meet their goals.

With the new Fitbit skill for Cortana, it’s now easier than ever for Fitbit users to monitor their health and fitness goals, sleep, stats and progress. Once you have connected your Fitbit account to Cortana, simply ask Cortana to get the information you need to stay inspired without having to pull up the Fitbit app or website. And because Cortana works across your Windows 10, Android and iOS devices, you can easily do so on the device closest to you.

You can say, “Hey Cortana, Ask Fitbit how am I doing today,” along with several other supported health and fitness prompts to learn about your daily progress. Cortana will not only read out your progress – like active minutes you’ve logged, how you slept last night, or the number of calories you’ve burned for any day within the previous week – but may also show you a short summary with all the handy information. If you’re tracking how you’re performing against your friends, you can say, “Hey Cortana, show me my leaderboard,” and Cortana will provide you with the extra motivation to keep you going. Cortana will also offer words of encouragement to inspire you to meet your goals, with responses that are tailored to the specific time of day. For example, if you inquire about your active minutes in the morning, you might be encouraged with “Today’s the day. Let’s do this.” Or, if you ask about your steps in the evening: “You are so there. I’d high five you if I could.”

Cortana understands natural language and makes it very easy to update Fitbit about your beverage and food intake without having to manually log the information.  You can say, “Hey Cortana, Tell Fitbit to log I had an omelet for breakfast,” or “Hey Cortana, Ask Fitbit to log I drank 12 ounces of water,” and Cortana will update your Fitbit account accordingly. Cortana provides you with the convenience of being able to log these activities through voice, helping you maintain a fuller view of your calorie intake – along with the impact on your overall health and fitness stats.

Cortana provides both voice and visual responses to users

There are many ways Cortana can help you engage with Fitbit. Here are a few you can try:

  • “Hey Cortana, ask Fitbit how much water I’ve had today”
  • “Hey Cortana, ask Fitbit how many calories do I have left to eat”
  • “Hey Cortana, ask Fitbit how many steps do I have left”
  • “Hey Cortana, ask Fitbit how many workouts I need to do this week”

To find out more, get started with the new Fitbit skill. Simply say “Hey Cortana, Open Fitbit,” and Cortana will ask you to connect your accounts by signing-in with your Fitbit username and password. You can then ask Cortana about your Fitbit activity. Happy stepping!

To learn more and discover the currently available skills, visit: microsoft.com/en-us/windows/cortana/cortana-skills/

*Available in US only. Other markets will be added over time.

Calling all game devs: The Dream.Build.Play 2017 Challenge is Here!

Dream.Build.Play is back! The long-running indie game development contest was on hiatus for a few years, so it’s high time for it to make a resounding return.

The Dream.Build.Play 2017 Challenge is the new contest: It just launched on June 27, and it challenges you to build a game and submit it by December 31 in one of four categories. We’re not super-picky — you can choose the technology to use just so long as it falls into one of the challenges and that you publish it as a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) game. It’s up to you to build a quality game that people will line up to play.

The four categories are:

Cloud-powered game – Grand Prize: $100,000 USD

Azure Cloud Services hands you a huge amount of back-end power and flexibility, and we think it’s cool (yes, we’re biased). So, here’s your shot of trying Azure out and maybe even win big. Build a game that uses Azure Cloud Services on the backend, like Service Fabric, CosmosDB, containers, VMs, storage and Analytics. Judges will give higher scores to games that use multiple services in creative ways — and will award bonus points for Mixer integration.

PC game – Grand Prize: $50,000 USD

Building on Windows 10, for Windows 10? This is the category for you. Create your best UWP game that lives and breathes on Windows 10 and is available to the more than 450 million users through the Windows Store. It’s simple: Create a game with whatever technology you want and publish it in the Windows Store. We’ll look favorably on games that add Windows 10 features such as Cortana or Inking because we really want to challenge you.

Mixed Reality game – Grand Prize: $50,000

Oh, so you want to enhance this world you live in with something a little…augmented? Virtual? Join us in the Mixed Reality challenge and build a volumetric experience that takes advantage of 3D content in a virtual space. You’ll need to create your game for Windows Mixed Reality, but you can use technology like Unity to get you kickstarted. Oh, and don’t forget the audio to really immerse us in your world.

Console game – Grand Prize: $25,000

Console gamers unite! Want to try your hand at building a game for Xbox? This category is your jam. Your UWP game will be built for the Xbox One console family and must incorporate Xbox Live Creators Program with at least Xbox Live presence. Consideration will be given for games that incorporate more Xbox Live services such as leaderboards and statistics.

There are some important dates to be aware of:

  • June 27: Competition opens for registration
  • August 2: Team formation and game submission period opens
  • December 31: Game submission period closes
  • January 2018: Finalists announced
  • March 2018: Winners awarded

We have big things planned for you. Maybe some additional contests and challenges, maybe some extra-cool prizes for the finalists, maybe some extra-cool interviews and educational materials. Once you register, we’ll keep you updated via email, but also keep an eye on our Windows Developer social media accounts.

As I mentioned earlier, you can pretty much use whatever technology you want. Create something from the ground up in JavaScript or XAML or C++ and DirectX. Leverage one of our great middleware partners like Unity, GameMaker, Cocos2D or Monogame. Or do a bit of both – do your own thing and incorporate Mixer APIs into it, Vungle or any one (or more) of our other partners. The biggest thing we want from you is a fun game that’s so enjoyable for us to play that we forget we’re judging it!

Speaking of that, you might be wondering how we judge the games. We have four “big bucket” criteria for you to aim for:

  • Fun Factor – 40%: Bottom line – your game needs to be fun. That doesn’t mean it has to be cutesy or simple. Fun comes in many forms, but we can’t forget what we’re aiming for here – a great game. Take us for a ride!
  • Innovation – 30%: And while you’re taking us on that ride, surprise us! We’re not looking for a clone of an existing game or a tired theme that has been done a bazillion times before. Mash-up two genres. Take a theme and turn it on its head. Don’t restrict your innovation to the game, but also the technology you’re using and how you’re using it. Think outside the box when you incorporate Windows features, or how you can creatively use a service like Mixer.
  • Production Quality – 20%: Games have to be fun and we want them to be innovative, but if they don’t run, then they’re just not ready to be called a game. This scoring criterion is all about making sure your framerate is right, you have audio where you should, you’ve catered for network instability and more. Give us every opportunity to get to your game and enjoy it the way you intended.
  • Business Viability/Feasibility – 10%: And of course, what’s your plan to engage your gaming customers? Do you have a good revenue-generating plan (e.g., in-app purchases, premium charges, marketing, rollouts, etc.)? That’s stuff you might not normally think about, but we’re gonna make you. Because we care.

If you want to get started with UWP game development, you can try our Game Development Guide.

Want more? Check out the introductory .GAME episode here:

So, what are you waiting for? Get in there and register!

Six things you need to know about Windows 10 S

Our mission with Windows is to build a platform that inspires creativity in each of us. This is the North Star that guides our team in all we do. With Windows, not only do we want to build a platform that inspires creativity in each of us – we also want customers to have choice around the best Windows for their needs. Back in May, we introduced a new set of educational products and services, including the introduction of Windows 10 S. Windows 10 S is the next step of our Windows journey by offering customers a familiar Windows 10 experience, streamlined for security and performance. By exclusively using apps from the Windows Store, Windows 10 S is ideal for students, educators, creators, and businesses alike who prefer longer battery life, faster boot up time, and the peace of mind that comes with using apps that are Microsoft-verified.

Windows 10 S Start menu show in English.

Windows 10 S ships with the Windows 10 Creators Update, and includes familiar Windows 10 experiences like Cortana*, Windows Hello**, Windows Ink**, Microsoft Edge, Paint 3D, and more.

Here are six things you need to know about Windows 10 S and some tips for getting started:

  • Windows 10 S is designed for superior performance. Start-ups are quick and designed to stay that way.
  • Browse the web with Microsoft Edge: a faster, more secure browser. With Windows 10 S, Microsoft Edge is the default browser. Microsoft Edge is built for Windows 10 and offers a secure browsing experience. In fact, Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 S blocks more phishing sites than Google Chrome on Chromebooks. Microsoft Edge is useful for students and home users alike, ensuring compatibility with the sites college students and universities use, like Google Docs. New features in Microsoft Edge–like the new Tab Preview Bar–make it easy for students to research and manage school projects. And, with Windows Ink in Microsoft Edge, students can easily make notes directly on a web page and share them with a classmate. If you’re new to Windows 10 S and Microsoft Edge, visit this post to learn how to import your data from other browsers into Microsoft Edge. With Microsoft Edge, Bing is the default search engine, and you can easily research and save any tabs – including any search engine as your preferred search destination.

Windows Defender Security Center shown on Windows 10 S

  • Microsoft–verified security. With Windows 10 S, customers who want to use apps can get them from the Windows Store where they are first verified for security, and then locally each run in a safe “container,” ensuring consistent performance and security for the system. Windows 10 S customers will be protected from malware by default with Windows Defender and can use additional anti-virus software available in the Windows Store if they choose.

Homepage of the Windows Store shown on Windows 10 S

  • Download the apps you want right from the Windows Store. There are many choices of apps in the Windows Store that are ready for you to download and use with Windows 10 S. Some examples include: Office 365 Personal in preview – available today for Windows 10 S– Hulu, Pandora, Autodesk SketchBook, Netflix, Sling TV, Complete Anatomy, Duolingo, NPR One, Facebook, Instagram, Drawboard PDF, OhBot, Fluid Math, Sensavis Visual Learning, and Twitter. We continue to work with our partners to bring even more apps to the Windows Store over time – Spotify and iTunes are apps we recently announced that will be available in the Windows Store in the coming months. Visit the Windows Store to get started exploring all the content available to download.

Office 365 Personal available in preview in the Windows Store for Windows 10 S

  • Office 365 and Windows 10 S are Better Together. Windows 10 S runs the rich desktop Office apps including popular productivity apps like Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook. The full suite of Office apps in preview are currently available to download today with Office 365 in the Windows Store for Windows 10 S. On Surface Laptop, you can simply open the Start menu and click on any of the Office app icons like Word, Excel, or PowerPoint to launch the download from the Store. For more information on Office 365 Personal in the Windows Store for Windows 10 S, visit this FAQ.
  • Built-in Windows experiences to keep you productive and inspire creativity. Windows 10 S offers familiar Windows 10 experiences like Cortana–your digital personal assistant–password-free sign in with Windows Hello, Windows Ink, the Xbox app, Paint 3D, and more.

For more tips on getting started with Windows 10 S, check out our Windows 10 Tips blog posts or visit this FAQ. We are excited to make available Windows 10 S today on the new Surface Laptop, and in the coming months, Windows 10 S will become available on even more devices across a range of price points from our partners.

*Cortana available in select markets.
**Windows Hello and Windows Ink experiences dependent on hardware.

Introducing more shopping tips with Cortana in Microsoft Edge

With Cortana and Microsoft Edge, we hope to continue offering features that will help you save time and money when shopping online using the Microsoft Edge web browser. To that end, we recently released a pilot feature that helps find the best pricing for the product you are viewing. However, Cortana will only notify you if the relevant details are available at the time of your visit. We are just beginning to roll this out to everyone on Windows 10 Creators Update to get feedback. Currently the feature supports 14 retailers including Amazon, Walmart, and eBay, within the US. We will be increasing availability and the number of retailers we support in the months ahead, so stay tuned for more updates.

When you visit the site of a supported retailer, Cortana will alert you that there are other options available at a lower price for the same product.

 Once you click on the Cortana icon, the information will be displayed in the right pane within the same window.

How it works:

The feature works similar to current Cortana features where you see Cortana display notification in the address bar if there’s helpful information available for the site you’re on. When you visit the site of a supported retailer, Cortana will alert you that there are other options available at a lower price for the same product. Once you click on the Cortana icon, the information will be displayed in the right pane within the same window.

Let us know what you think about the feature. Your feedback is important as we continue to make improvements and add support for other sites.

Microsoft shows partner innovation with Always-Connected PCs, MR and IoT at Computex 2017

Computex, Asia’s largest IT trade show, is always an exciting event for Microsoft. We see the OEM and ODM ecosystem come together with over 40,000 visitors and 1,600 exhibitors on new technologies and business relationships. This year, it is inspiring to launch partners’ innovative devices with Windows 10. Beyond the PC market, these partners are also driving emerging categories like the Internet of things and mixed reality. The Microsoft booth at Computex displays the latest in device and solution innovation and gives people hands-on time with the latest technologies.

This year I had the pleasure of taking the keynote stage with Nick Parker, CVP, consumer and device sales and Matt Barlow, CVP, Windows marketing to talk about how Microsoft is ‘Building the Possible’ with our partners.

Our announcements included:

  • Debut of numerous modern devices from top partners,
  • OEM and Operator commitments to deliver Always Connected PCs,
  • Windows Mixed Reality progress on the road to launch later this year, and
  • Windows and Azure IoT solutions in key verticals like manufacturing and utilities.

We talked about our efforts to inspire customers with new Windows experiences and devices, to help grow the ecosystem, and to bring new categories to life.

Diverse Windows Mixed Reality Headset designs

Last year at Computex, Terry Myerson and Alex Kipman invited partners to join us in building devices that merge physical and virtual realities. Since then we have seen Windows Mixed Reality Headsets from partners like Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, and Lenovo.

At the show this year, we are able to show off the great new designs from these partners making mixed reality available for everyone later this year. These headsets, coming to market this holiday, use Microsoft’s platform to enable a single and consistent user interface, standardized inputs, and a universal app platform for developers.

Acer Windows Mixed Reality headset

Acer Windows Mixed Reality headset

HP Windows Mixed Reality headset

HP Windows Mixed Reality headset

During Alex Kipman’s Build keynote, we announced that Windows Mixed Reality dev kits from Acer and HP are now available for pre-order through the Microsoft Store for developers in the US (Acer, HP) and Canada (Acer, HP). The response to these dev kits has been positive and we look forward to seeing all the great content that our development ecosystem will create.

ASUS Windows Mixed Reality headset

ASUS Windows Mixed Reality headset

As a leading gaming and innovation partner, ASUS is expanding on its prowess into the fast emerging mixed reality category. In addition to its Oculus-Ready ROG gaming desktops and VR-Ready VivoPC X, ASUS will be adding a futuristic head-mount device with a unique polygonal 3D cover panel, designed with comfortable ergonomically adjustable strap, enabling an easy one-hand setup. ASUS is engaged with Microsoft to make this HMD fast, powerful, and ultra-light with a six degrees of freedom (DOF) tracked motion controller, for an incredible, immersive MR experience.

Dell Windows Mixed Reality headset

Dell Windows Mixed Reality headset

Dell is building on their Virtual Reality (VR) leadership in premium gaming and professional creation by partnering with Microsoft to deliver an affordable consumer headset, which will bring mixed reality experiences to a broad audience. Dell’s stylish white headset is uniquely focused on user comfort, designed by the same team that crafts their premium XPS and Alienware PCs. The Dell headset, which will be available by holiday, is thoughtfully designed for comfort and convenience with innovations such as comfortable cushions that can be replaced for a personalized experience, weight balanced headband centered on the user’s head for long-term comfort, cable routing to free the user from dangling wires and, a flip-up visor for easy wearing and removing.

Lenovo Windows Mixed Reality headset

Lenovo Windows Mixed Reality headset

Lenovo is partnering with Microsoft to bring this amazing technology to everyone through an incredibly affordable mixed reality headset for truly immersive, beyond-the-screen mixed reality experiences. Coming later this year, Lenovo’s mixed reality headset will contain built-in sensors to enable inside-out tracking and simplified set-up to let users move around more easily as they experience virtual worlds.

Internet of things solutions are coming in key verticals

Businesses, governments, and academic institutions are harnessing the internet of things (IoT) to drive business forward. With Windows 10 IoT core on devices, Azure IoT, Cortana analytics, and business intelligence, Microsoft is providing a consistent, end-to-end platform that enables partners to build enterprise-grade, IoT solutions for customers.

IoT is about more than a device connected to the cloud, it is really about a multitude of devices, connected together, to deliver insights. In the Microsoft booth, my colleague Mike Quinn showed journalists “a Day in the Life with IoT,” and how these devices work together. For example, the Airbox device collects and reports data on air quality metrics like temperature and humidity and displays the analytics on a dashboard. While in the restaurant scenario there is digital signage, a digital price board, a kiosk for self-ordering, and a robot which makes product recommendations based on historic order information.

New “Always Connected PCs” allow constant connectivity

There is a new generation of users that need to be connected to the cloud at all times. They are students, creators, freelancers, small businesses, and enterprises.  This means sharing experiences across screens and leveraging the latest network technology like gigabit LTE and eSIM. We are collaborating with our ecosystem on a shared vision. This starts with a close partnership at the silicon layer, with Intel and Qualcomm and with our mobile operator partners to provide seamless eSIM connectivity. Microsoft device partners ASUS, HP, Huawei, Lenovo, VAIO, and Xiaomi, are committed to this new category of Always Connected PCs using eSIM technology. In addition, Microsoft announced Always Connected devices will be coming from ASUS, HP, and Lenovo on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chipset. These new devices will feature Windows 10, always-on LTE connectivity and great battery life.

New, innovative Windows 10 PCs

By far, my favorite part of the show every year is seeing the latest devices from our partners come to market. Partners like Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo, MSI, Panasonic, Samsung, Toshiba, Huawei have all brought beautiful new thin and slim laptops, ruggedized tablets, 2-in-1’s and gaming PCs to market in recent weeks. Here are a few announced here at Computex:

Acer’s new Nitro 5 series and its latest Spin 1 convertible notebook

With Acer’s new Nitro 5 series, gamers can choose from a variety of configurations that feature popular graphics and processors to meet different budgets and needs. Dual fans with Acer Coolboost technology deliver heightened fan speeds and cooling ability, and allows users to manually control the cooling process when heavy use requires an added boost.

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The latest version of Acer’s Spin 1 convertible notebook features a sleek metal chassis and vibrant Full-HD display. It comes with Windows 10, and is lightweight, portable and supports Windows Ink through an Acer Active Stylus for creative users on the go.

ASUS brings new thin and light PCs and gaming devices to market

This week, ASUS introduced a line-up of thin-and-light ZenBook and VivoBook laptops that push the boundaries of design and technology to deliver the ultimate mobile computing experiences. The new laptop line-up includes support for many new Windows 10 features — including Windows Ink, Windows Hello, Cortana, and Modern Standby — that boost productivity and gives users an amazing computing experience. Also unveiled at their ROG event here in Taipei was the long-awaited ROG Zephyrus. Zephyrus is the world’s slimmest gaming laptop powered by a 7th Generation Intel® Core™ i7 processor and the latest NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1080 graphics. Zephyrus features the Windows 10 Creators Update, which improves the performance of PC games via the all-new Windows Game Mode, and makes it easier to perform native game-streaming with Mixer, Microsoft’s streaming service.

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Dell’s new Inspiron AIOs and gaming desktop  

Dell’s new line-up includes the Inspiron 27 7000 AIO, the Inspiron 24 5000 AIO and the new Inspiron Gaming Desktop – the first gaming desktop to join Dell’s expanding Inspiron Gaming line-up. The new systems boast Dell’s iconic virtually borderless InfinityEdge display technology for a beautiful viewing experience – available for the first time on the Inspiron AIO line – and “Ready for VR” configurations which are capable of delivering immersive experiences through high-end VR headsets. Both new AIO devices are equipped with Windows Hello for one look login and Cortana for far-field speech recognition.

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Lenovo’s new V720 designed for small business

The digital transformation is your stepping-stone to the technologies of the future. Enabling employees to realize the benefits of digital transformation requires computing devices that offer power, flexibility, durability and mobility.

It was exciting for me to announce on stage a new commercial device from Lenovo. Thin and light and with an industry leading 77% screen proportion, the new Lenovo V720 is powered by the latest Intel processors and includes next-gen features like Microsoft Hello and Cortana. USB-C Thunderbolt and discrete NVIDIA graphics will help end-users leverage digital technologies to match the pace of business transformation.

MSI Promises the “Next Gaming Dimension”

MSI displayed this week high-end Windows gaming devices. This includes its refreshed gaming laptop rosters: the GT75VR, GS63/73VR, GE63/73VR series and the very latest X299 GAMING M7 ACK, X299 GAMING PRO CARBON AC, X299 TOMAHAWK motherboard. In its booth, they also showed the beefy Infinite A and Trident Arctic gaming desktops, and gaming accessories like the Clutch GM70 gaming mouse, Vigor GK80 gaming keyboard along with Core Frozr XL CPU cooler.

Samsung’s Notebook 9 Pro

I also had the privilege of showing for the first time, Samsung’s new 2017 Notebook 9 Pro which allows users to easily switch between typing on the keyboard, write with their intuitive S Pen, and navigate the brilliant touchscreen. Its slim and lightweight design is for those who are always on the go and need a portable, yet powerful device.

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This year, more than ever, we’re seeing new devices in emerging categories truly changing the market. From mixed reality headsets coming at highly affordable price points and connected IoT-enabled devices enabling consumers and businesses to achieve more to new “Always Connected PC’s” powered by eSIM technology, the opportunities for partners to bring new types of devices to life has never been greater.

A thriving ecosystem

All of these devices and new categories create business opportunities for our partners. From new business models like dynamic store bundling and cloud to expanding the ecosystem into new areas like head-mounted displays and motion controllers for mixed reality, our platforms are creating new opportunities for partners.

Our partners push the envelope in gaming experiences. They deliver affordable devices for education. They bring to market devices that light up Windows 10 experiences. Through this thriving ecosystem of partners, new categories come to life.

I’m very excited for the year ahead and for how this ecosystem works together to build the possible.

Windows 10 Tip: Manage music playback on your favorite music apps with Cortana

With Cortana, it’s easier to stay on top of your schedule, your commitments, and all the important things you need to remember to keep your day running smoothly. And now, with the Windows 10 Creators Update, you can use Cortana to control music playback on more of your favorite music apps.*

Here’s how to get started:

First, make sure Groove is enabled by going to the Music tab in the Cortana Notebook.

Groove supports the ability to play music by mood, category or activity so you can say, “Hey Cortana, play me some workout music.”

Groove now supports the ability to play music by mood, category or activity so you can say, “Hey Cortana, play me some workout music.”**

Groove supports the ability to play music by mood, category or activity so you can say, “Hey Cortana, play me some workout music.”

We’ve also enabled natural language compatibility for the iHeartRadio and TuneIn Radio apps. This will work both above the lock screen (when your PC is locked) as well as below!**

Try saying things like:

  • Play Drake on iHeartRadio
  • Play Top 40 on iHeartRadio
  • Play NPR Hourly News on TuneIn
  • Play jazz music on TuneIn
  • Play Z100 on iHeartRadio
  • Play KUOW on TuneIn

And, if you are wondering about what song is playing, just say “Hey Cortana, what’s playing?” and Cortana will find the answer for you.

Have a great week!

*Cortana available in select markets; this feature available in US only
**Requires Groove subscription 

Panasonic announces Toughbook 33 2-in-1 detachable laptop powered by Windows 10

Inspired by mobile professionals, it features a 3:2 display and is designed to meet MIL-STD-810G and IP65 standards to perform in even the most extreme conditions.

Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1: Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1 in attached flip mode

Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1: Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1 in attached flip mode

With Windows 10, this device arrives built-in with Cortana* – your digital personal assistant who can help you complete tasks, set reminders, and work across your devices more productively. For workers operating in extreme conditions, these hands-free options offer important flexibility. The touchscreen, 3:2 display and IP55 digitizer pen allow you to use Windows Ink for drawing or signature accuracy on the screen, as well as writing or highlighting web pages in Microsoft Edge, even in the toughest of weather conditions. You can also login quickly and securely with Windows Hello using either the infrared webcam with facial recognition or the fingerprint reader.

Panasonic Toughbook 33 Detached: Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1 in detached mode showcasing keyboard and screen

Panasonic Toughbook 33 Detached: Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1 in detached mode showcasing keyboard and screen

The Toughbook 33 2-in-1 laptop is built for maximum mobility with two twin hot-swappable batteries that provide 10 hours of battery life, or up to 20 with the Long Life Battery configuration – enough to ensure uptime for even the most demanding jobs. Tablet Mode in Windows 10 delivers a smooth, touch-first experience; your apps will scale smoothly, and onscreen features will adapt for easy navigation on this 2-in-1. This device provides six flexible usage modes, designed to ensure the device offers the flexibility today’s workers demand and offers two keyboards to choose from to accommodate the unique needs of mobile professionals.

Panasonic Toughbook 33: Panasonic Toughbook 33 folded in tablet mode with screen showing

Panasonic Toughbook 33: Panasonic Toughbook 33 folded in tablet mode with screen showing

Other features of the Panasonic Toughbook 33 with Windows 10 include: 

  • 1080p webcam and an 8MP rear camera
  • Up to 10 hours battery life, or up to 20 with the optional Long Life Battery configuration; twin-battery design for hot-swap battery replacement
  • 256GB SSD with heater (optional 512GB), 8GB onboard RAM (optional 16GB)
  • Choice of Barcode or Serial (true) or 2nd USB, Choice of Insertable SmartCard or Contactless Smartcard or Fingerprint readers
  • 12.0” 3:2 QHD 2160×1440 wide-view angle display with direct bonding, and a 1200 nit sunlight-viewable screen
  • Magnesium alloy chassis, MIL-STD-810G and IP65 all-weather design, in addition
  • Available with two different vehicle docks for new deployments: a tablet vehicle dock and a 2-in-1 vehicle dock. For Panasonic’s large customer installation base of Toughbook 31 vehicle docks, Panasonic is also offering a drop-in-replacement 31 Vehicle Dock Adapter (VDA) with removable Lite Keyboard.

Pricing and Availability: The Panasonic Toughbook 33 2-in-1 laptop with Windows 10 comes with the detachable Premium Keyboard for those looking for the flexibility of a 2-in-1, but can also be purchased as a tablet only. The Toughbook 33 will be available from authorized Panasonic resellers later this month starting around $3,649.

*Cortana available in select markets.

Build 2017: Sparking the next wave of creativity with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

Today, at Build 2017, we announced the next wave of Windows 10 innovations built to empower the creator in all of us – the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. Available later this year, the Fall Creators Update delivers new experiences for more than 500 million Windows 10 devices: A new design system for the next wave of creativity across devices; experiences that move with you across Windows, iOS, and Android; iTunes, Spotify, SAP Digital Boardroom are coming to the Windows Store; new tools that make Windows home for all developers; and the world’s first Windows Mixed Reality motion controllers – no markers required.

The spirit of creativity lives in each of us. So often our lives are changed by creating something out of nothing, from a big idea, a dream, or just a simple thought.

Like the incredible developers here at Build, I experienced my own personal creativity in software development. I remember what it was like to wait as my code compiled, then seeing it come to life on the screen for the first time. There is an amazing feeling of creativity that comes from software development. I love seeing that spark of creativity in our Windows developer community.

The Windows 10 Creators Update began rolling out last month to more than 500 million Windows 10 devices around the world. It’s exciting to see more than 300 million people using Windows 10 every day for more than 3.5 hours a day on average. With all of this engagement, we’re most proud that Windows 10 customers have higher satisfaction than any previous version of Windows ever. 

Today, I am pleased to introduce the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update – coming later this year.

Windows Story Remix: A new way to transform your photos and videos

To give people a sense of what’s possible with the Fall Creators Update, today we unveiled Windows Story Remix. Built on .NET and distributed through the Windows Store as a Universal Windows Application, Story Remix uses AI and deep learning to organize and transform your photos and videos into stories. It will use the Microsoft Graph to connect you and your friends across devices. Story Remix brings your memories, or even your friends’ photos and videos together to create stories with a soundtrack, theme, and cinematic transitions. You can also create mixed reality by adding 3D objects to your photos and videos to tell stories in a whole new way or turn your photos and videos into your canvas, drawing on them with Windows Ink.

Here is a peek into what you can expect from Windows Story Remix.

Introducing a new design system for the next wave of creativity across devices

Today, there are many devices and platforms competing for our attention. We read the morning news on our tablets, check email on our phones, and use our desktop PCs at work. These devices all behave differently and fulfill different needs. From large screens to no screens, they rely on touch, ink, voice, gaze, and gesture. Every day, developers also face the challenge of a multi-device, multi-interaction world, and we are committed to simplifying this world with a modern Microsoft design system.

I am excited to announce the next step in the evolution of our design approach: Microsoft Fluent Design System. Fluent Design will deliver intuitive, harmonious, responsive and inclusive cross-device experiences and interactions. For developers, Fluent Design is built to help you create more expressive and engaging apps that work across a wide range of device and input diversity. Take a look.

Windows experiences move with you across Windows, iOS, and Android

The Microsoft Graph is an intelligent fabric that helps connect dots between people, conversations, projects, and content within the Microsoft Cloud – ensuring experiences flow seamlessly between Windows, iOS, and Android devices. Getting things done across all the devices you use should be easy. That’s the principle behind several of the new features that will begin to roll out with the Fall Creators Update – leveraging both the new Fluent Design System and the intelligence of the Microsoft Graph.

  • Timeline: With Timeline in Windows 10, you can now jump back in time to find what you were working on. With a visual timeline that displays what you were doing when, you can easily hop back into files, apps, and sites as if you never left.

Timeline: With Timeline in Windows 10, you can now jump back in time to find what you were working on. With a visual timeline that displays what you were doing when, you can easily hop back into files, apps, and sites as if you never left.

  • Pick Up Where You Left Off: With Cortana*, you can pick up where you left off across Windows, iOS, and Android devices. Imagine logging off your PC and having the doc you were editing pop up on your phone. Cortana asks if you want to pick up where you left in your app, doc, or website. It’s like having your PC and your phone finish each other’s sentences.

Pick Up Where You Left Off: With Cortana*, you can pick up where you left off across Windows, iOS, and Android devices. Imagine logging off your PC and having the doc you were editing pop up on your phone. Cortana asks if you want to pick up where you left in your app, doc, or website. It’s like having your PC and your phone finish each other’s sentences.

  • Clipboard: Clipboard is a fast and easy way to copy and paste just about anything between connected devices, whether you’re on a Windows PC or your favorite mobile phone. Just hit copy on what you want to grab – your photo, map link, paragraph, or even an animated gif- and it is ready to paste into whatever you want. It’s the Clipboard you know and love, now cloud-powered.
  • OneDrive Files On-Demand: Access all your files in the cloud without having to download them and use storage space on your device. You don’t have to change the way you work because all your files – even online files – can be seen in File Explorer and accessed on-demand whenever they are needed. To learn more about this, visit the OneDrive Blog.

OneDrive Files On-Demand: Access all your files in the cloud without having to download them and use storage space on your device. You don’t have to change the way you work, because all your files – even online files – can be seen in File Explorer and accessed on-demand whenever they are needed.

The Windows Store: The best place for continuous delivery of your apps

With Visual Studio and the Windows Store, we now have a comprehensive workflow solution for apps to be built, tested, and published to any platform with an unmatched feedback cycle to drive love and engagement. This includes consumer apps and commercial apps—inside and outside the enterprise.

Today, we announced that full UWP capabilities are coming to Visual Studio Mobile Center this fall through automated build support and a full range of Windows devices available in our test cloud. For consumer apps, we added 35 new payment instruments this year and now support payments in 247 markets globally. We have also seen monthly in-app purchase sales double year over year in the Windows Store.

Welcoming iTunes and more apps to the Windows Store

Just last week we announced Windows 10 S —where apps take center stage. We believe people will love the simplicity, security, and superior performance of Windows 10 S. And there has never been a better time to bring your apps to the Windows Store.

When we unveiled Windows 10 S, Spotify announced that it is bringing its app to the Windows Store. And today we’re announcing more popular apps coming later this year:

  • iTunes: iTunes is coming to the Windows Store by the end of this year. Windows users will get the complete iTunes experience, including Apple Music and the iTunes Store, as well as support for iPhone and other Apple devices on any Windows 10 or Windows 10 S PC.
  • Autodesk: When Autodesk introduced their UWP SketchBook last summer it became their fastest growing new platform introduction with an average of 35% sales growth every month throughout 2017. Autodesk SketchBook, the de facto application for painting and drawing, was built from the ground up as a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) app leveraging the pen and touch capability of Windows 10. Autodesk will continue to use UWP to extend their Windows Store offerings to include support for Windows Mixed Reality in Autodesk Stingray, a 3D game engine, and real-time rendering software.
  • SAP Digital Boardroom: SAP will bring SAP Digital Boardroom to the Windows Store this month. SAP Digital Boardroom is one of the most popular solutions from SAP. It is a next-generation board portal which leverages data from lines of business applications to provide a single source of truth for executives to steer the business in real time. The app was submitted to the Windows Store as a Progressive Web App. This allows SAP to reuse their web content and investments to target multiple platforms, while at the same time take advantage of deeper integration with Windows 10.

Making Windows home for all developers

We know how important it is for developers to have the right tools that get out of the way so creativity can flow. We’re inspired to make Windows and Visual Studio the best home for all developers–not only for applications on Windows but app experiences that span across all platforms and all devices.

First, we want to help the developers who have bet on Windows to make the most of the code they already have, by simplifying and modernizing their code base to more easily take advantage of innovation and drive cross-platform engagement. To do that, today we announced .NET Standard 2.0 for UWP and XAML Standard are both coming later this year.

Second, with modern code, developers can take advantage of Windows and the Microsoft Graph, using Project Rome for UWP, Android, and now iOS.

Third, last year at Build we unveiled the first tech preview of Bash on Ubuntu for Windows. We were blown away by the enthusiasm and excitement from the community. Today, we announced that we’ve simplified the install of Ubuntu by bringing it to the Windows Store. We also announced we are working with SUSE Linux and Fedora Linux running on the Windows Subsystem for Linux— to bring them to the Windows Store. Now, Windows is the only platform that can run both Windows apps and Linux apps side-by-side.

We also announced we are working with SUSE Linux and Fedora Linux running on the Windows Subsystem for Linux— to bring them to the Windows Store. Now, Windows is the only platform that can run both Windows apps and Linux apps side-by-side.

Fourth, we introduced the Xamarin Live Player to enable you to build, test, and debug your iPhone applications from your Windows PC. With the Xamarin Live Player, all you need is Visual Studio and an iPhone to build native apps for iOS in minutes.

Finally, part of empowering every person on the planet to achieve more is creating experiences for people of all abilities. There are more than one billion people with disabilities in the world, we have been working to make it easier for all of us to develop for people with all abilities. Today, I was proud to share Narrator in Debug Mode so developers can build for a more inclusive set of customers without leaving the dev environment.

Kevin Gallo will take a deeper dive into the developer news from today with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update and why Windows is home for all developers, learn more here.

Introducing the world’s first Windows Mixed Reality motion controllers – no markers required

Today, we were inspired by the magic of Cirque du Soleil and how they’re using Windows Mixed Reality to transform the way they imagine and create shows. In order to demonstrate the creative decisions, they have to face, they rebuilt a virtual version of the stage from the show Kurios, including its famous huge mechanical hand.

The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update will also see the magic of mixed reality brought to consumers around the world. We are working with developers to create this new frontier in computing and want any developer to get a Windows Mixed Reality dev kit. Due to wide interest from the community, I’m excited to share developers in the US and Canada can pre-order an Acer ($299) or HP ($329) headset starting today from the Microsoft Store for delivery later this summer.

Acer Windows Mixed Reality dev kit.

In addition to the first availability of dev kits for purchase, we also unveiled the first Windows Mixed Reality motion controllers with no markers required.

A customer who pairs a Windows Mixed Reality headset with motion controllers will have a rich and immersive experience across creativity tools, productivity, games, and entertainment. The motion controllers offer precise and responsive tracking of movement in your field of view using the sensors in your headset. There is no need to install hardware on the walls around you. We created the controllers as a high-quality and comfortable input device with the same ease of setup and portability as our headsets. Our device partners plan to market and sell these controllers on retail shelves this holiday.

Acer Windows Mixed Reality headset and motion controller bundle priced at $399 this holiday.

We are keeping our promise to deliver a new mixed reality experience for everyone at an affordable price point. Today, we also announced Acer will sell a Windows Mixed Reality headset and motion controller bundle priced at $399 this holiday.

Let’s build the future

Windows is Your Home for Development on a blue slide

We are building Windows to be the platform that empowers everyone to create. And I invite all of you to join us on this journey. Here’s how you can get started:

We can’t wait to see what you create next.

Terry

*Cortana available in select markets.

Cortana Skills Kit empowers developers to build intelligent experiences for millions of users

Today, we are pleased to announce the public preview of the Cortana Skills Kit which allows developers to easily create intelligent, personalized experiences for Cortana.

Our vision for Cortana has always been to create a digital personal assistant that’s available to users across all their devices, whenever and wherever they may need an extra hand to be more productive and get things done. With the new Cortana Skills Kit, developers can join in delivering that vision and reach millions of Cortana users across platforms including Windows 10, Android, iOS and soon on even more devices and form factors — like Xbox, the Harman Kardon Invoke smart speaker and inside cars and mixed reality devices.

To build a Cortana skill, developers can create their bot’s conversational logic using the Microsoft Bot Framework, and publish it to the new Cortana Channel within the Bot Framework, bringing speech capabilities to skills. Developers can understand users’ natural input and build custom machine-learned language models through LUIS.ai, and add intelligence with the power of Cognitive Services.

Cortana has rich knowledge and understanding about the user with the Skills Kit. Developers can now access knowledge about the user and build highly-relevant, personalized experiences based on the user’s preferences and context. Cortana only shares information with the user’s consent.

We realize that we are at the dawn of building conversational experiences for end users. Developers want to reach a large and diverse set of users to understand user needs and behaviors. There are over 145M monthly active users of Cortana worldwide. With the Cortana Skills Kit, developers can immediately reach the 60M users in the US and grow their international reach in the future*. To start building skills today, please visit https://developer.microsoft.com/en-us/Cortana.

We are also excited to announce a wide range of partners who have joined us on this journey and are building Cortana skills. Cortana users will be able to access skills from OpenTable, Expedia, Capital One, StubHub,  Food Network, HP, iHeartRadio, Stubhub, Dominos, TuneIn, Uber, CapitalOne, Knowmail, MovieTickets.com, Tact, Skyscanner, Fresh Digital, Gigskr, Gupshup, The Motley Fool, Mybuddy, Patron, Porch, Razorfish, StarFish Mint, Talklocal, UPS, WebMD, Pylon, BigOven, CityFalcon, DarkSky, Elokence, BLT Robotics, Wed Guild, AI Games, XAPP Media,  GameOn, MegaSuperWeb, Verge and Vokkal.co.

To learn more and discover the currently available skills visit: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/cortana/cortana-skills/

*Available in US only. Other markets will be added over time.

Harman Kardon Invoke featuring Cortana: Captivating sound meets personal digital assistant

Man standing in kitchen, holding a cup of coffee looking at the Harman Kardon Invoke speaker that combines the rich, captivating sound that Harman Kardon is known for with your personal digital assistant, Cortana, in an innovative and beautifully designed speaker for the home.

The Harman Kardon Invoke speaker combines the rich, captivating sound that Harman Kardon is known for with your personal digital assistant, Cortana, in an innovative and beautifully designed speaker for the home.

In addition to premium 360 sound, at the heart of Invoke is Cortana. With Cortana on the Invoke speaker, you can play your favorite music, manage calendars and activities, set reminders, check traffic, and deliver the latest news and much more. With Skype integration, you can make calls to cell phones, landlines and other Skype-enabled devices. You can also voice control your compatible smart home devices to do things like turn out the lights or control the temperature.

Product shot of two Harman Kardon Invoke speakers on a white background side by side, one is black in color and the other is white.

We want Cortana to be available wherever you may need assistance being more productive, and the Invoke speaker from Harman Kardon is our next step in getting there. With natural language recognition and deep integration with Microsoft’s suite of knowledge and productivity tools, Cortana is the most productive digital assistant and already used by more than 145 million people on PC and mobile devices. With Invoke, Cortana now becomes available in the home, making her even more valuable.

Visit HarmanKardon.com to learn more about Invoke and stay tuned for more updates on Cortana!

This device is available in the US only. Cortana voice activation works with select music services and home automation providers. Set up requires Cortana app for Windows 10 PC or phone (with the Windows 10 Creators Update), Android or iPhone (requires Android version 4.1.2 or higher, or iPhone 4 with iOS 8.0 or higher).

*Cortana available in select markets.