Tag Archives: Surface Hub

Owning Surface just got easier with the new Surface Plus Program

Surface is designed to help people better create, collaborate, learn, and get things done. Beginning today at 9:00 a.m. PT, we’re excited to announce the availability of Surface Plus and Surface Plus for Business; flexible financing options designed to help more people and businesses take advantage of the power of Surface. Available exclusively in the U.S. at Microsoft Stores and online at Microsoft.com, here’s all that Surface Plus and Surface Plus for Business can do for you:

Owning Surface just got easier with the new Surface Plus Program

With school starting soon, there’s never been a better time for students to find the best Surface that’s right for them. Whether it’s a Surface Laptop, Surface Pro, Surface Book or Surface Studio – Surface Plus provides a simple, no-hassle plan to help students unlock their productivity and be more creative with Surface.

Surface Plus benefits include:

  • Low monthly payments: Customers can purchase a Surface device with an easy, 24-month payment plan at 0% APR.1
  • Device upgrades: Customers can upgrade to the latest Surface after just 18 months.2
  • Dedicated Service & Support: Surface Plus offers best in class service and support from Microsoft Stores. Customers also have the option to add the Microsoft Complete extended service plan.
  • Microsoft Store benefits: All customers who shop at Microsoft Store enjoy access to benefits like a 30-day hassle free return policy, a Surface training and health check as well as a year of free in-store support and technical assistance.

For more information about Microsoft’s full suite of offerings and deals for students and teachers, check out today’s Windows Experience Blog post.

Surface Plus for Business

Owning Surface just got easier with the new Surface Plus Program

We’re also excited to announce Surface Plus for Business. Small and medium-sized businesses that are currently enrolled in the Surface Membership program will now enjoy the same enterprise-grade services and support under the Surface Plus for Business plan. Surface Plus for Business will offer new and existing customers:

  • Multiple Surface models: Customers can add as many devices as they want into a single agreement and can have a mix of models across the Surface portfolio.
  • The latest devices: Previously unavailable, customers can now finance a 55” Surface Hub in addition to the new Surface Pro, Surface Laptop, Surface Book, and Surface Studio to unlock the power of the group in their businesses.
  • Office 365 for Business:. For an additional $8.25 per user per month, businesses can enjoy the ultimate productivity experience on Surface.
  • Flexible Terms3. Businesses can choose flexible 18, 24 or 30 month periods, with the ability to upgrade devices after just 12 months on the 18-month term (or after 18 months on the 24-month term). Businesses can also expand or reduce their device fleet mid-term.*
  • Device Protection: Surface Plus for Business offers peace of mind with the Microsoft Complete for Business extended service plan with accidental damage protection.

Surface Plus and Surface Plus for Business is ownership, re-imagined. For customers in the U.S., we invite you to visit your nearest Microsoft Store for a device fitting or enroll online today to choose the best Surface for you.

1Promotional 0% APR available to qualified customers and subject to credit approval by Klarna. 19.99% APR after 24 months.. Financing issued by WebBank, member FDIC, and serviced by Klarna. Subject to Surface Plus Terms and Klarna Credit Terms
2 Upgrade subject to device availability and eligibility requirements, including an account with Klarna, Inc. in good standing, the return of the functional device to Microsoft in good condition, and new 24-month payment plan and credit agreement with Klarna.
3 The 19.99% interest rate is specific to individual Surface Plus customers financed via Klarna. Surface Plus for Business financing is provided by LiftForward and does not incur interest rates.
*Updated to reflect Surface Plus for Business length terms and financing details

Now is the best time to be a Surface partner

Men and woman sitting around a conference table looking at a Surface Pro.

I love the energy of our partners and hearing about their successes with Surface. To every Surface partner: thank you. You are helping businesses around the globe create workplaces that harness the full power of their teams and unleash their people’s creativity. It’s meaningful work that inspires me personally and the Surface team daily.

It’s amazing to think about how far the Surface Commercial business has come in three years because of our partners – from one to over 15,000 partners worldwide. Partners have developed innovative delivery and service models, such as Surface as a Service, which in under a year has grown from one partner and one customer to over 50 partners in 15 markets worldwide. Another partner-led program, the Surface Hub Value Added Distributor Program for Opportunity Resellers (VADOR), in less than four months has grown to over 500 partners and now accounts for 15% of Surface Hub sales worldwide!

The momentum Surface has will continue to grow especially considering today’s announcement of Microsoft 365, which combines the best of Microsoft products across Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security. Surface devices represent the best expression of the Microsoft 365 offerings, allowing individuals and organizations to take the fullest advantage of their Office and Windows investments.

Today, I am highlighting two new opportunities for partners and customers to get more value out of their Surface devices: a new Services and Support opportunity as well as previewing our new Surface Reseller Alliance.

Improvements to services and support

Pre and Post-sale Services and Support are essential for modern businesses to succeed. Enterprises need devices that not only help them transform digital workflows but also ensure that their employees are always productive. I am excited to share that since the announcement at Ignite last year, we have quite a bit of progress on our next-generation Services and Support. The partner program for Services and Support was successfully piloted and is now active in 10 countries: the US., U.K., Germany, France, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Finland. Japan and the expansion to other Surface markets are coming over the next few months.

That said, we know larger Enterprise customers expect services such as next business day replacement and next business day onsite support on a global scale.

With that in mind, today I’m announcing that Microsoft Surface is partnering with IBM Technology Support Services (TSS) – one of the world’s leading support providers – to enhance our Microsoft Complete extended warranty offerings and deliver technology services and support for Surface devices. 

These services, offered by our channel partners, will be available starting July 15th in the US and Canada, with other Surface markets coming online soon.

I’m also happy to share that next business day replacement and next business day onsite support services will be available for new and existing customers who have a Microsoft Complete extended service plan.

Now whether you’re a 100-person company with one location or a 5,000+ person organization spread across the globe, you can receive the best post-sale services and support, thanks to our updated offerings.

Surface Reseller Alliance

Our goal is to enable our Surface resellers the ability to provide a premium experience when they interact with our shared end customers. To ensure our Surface reseller partners have the latest information in training, set up and transactional assistance, we’ve created the Microsoft Surface Reseller Alliance. The goal of the Alliance is to provide the Surface partners easy access to product information, training, marketing support materials, end-customer assistance and help with and direct deal registration for Distributor Managed Partners (DMPs). The Alliance is currently in preview and is accessible via the current Surface Drumbeat site. We will launch it in full later this fall.

The Surface Reseller Alliance training program includes a revamped online portal with training modules, live webinars for newly launched Surface products, and will provide incentives for partner sellers to complete training curriculum. We’re also ramping up our marketing support by making significant investments in lead generation, providing assets, guidelines and assistance to help partners create fantastic marketing collateral and web experiences wherever Surface is sold.

An example of our efforts to unify our resellers experience is the Deal Registration Portal that we will launch in the coming months. The Deal Registration Portal will allow our DMPs to register their deals directly as opposed to through their distributor. This will save them time and energy so they can focus on winning new business.

We will continue to create additional Microsoft Surface Reseller Alliance programs like the Deal Registration Portal and make other subsequent updates to improve the portal over time. This is just the beginning. To learn more partners can contact their Microsoft Account Teams starting today.

The success of Surface in the commercial sector in large part is due to the hard work of our partner network, who enable us to create innovative programs to better serve the needs of our shared customers worldwide. We are grateful to partners for their innovative spirits, tenacity, input, and desire as together we enable businesses and people around the world to do more. We look forward to years of continued success!

Surface Hub more powerful with Windows 10 Creators Update

In the past 14 months since we began shipping Surface Hub, the response we’ve seen from businesses globally has been astounding. Today, over half of Fortune 100 companies have purchased Surface Hubs to improve how their teams inspire and collaboratebreaking down barriers and creating real business value.

Today, we’ve taken another leap towards improving collaboration in the workplace by rolling out Windows 10 Creators Update for Surface Hub.

The Creators Update is the culmination of months of listening to feedback of our best customers and includes a litany of great features and tools to help teams better create. My favorites: the amazing new Microsoft Whiteboard App that allows real-time collaborative inking across devices, deeper integration with a person’s individual authenticated Office 365 documents and new manageability and security tools to help keep your information safe.

Let’s take a deeper look at what is under the hood of Windows 10 Creators Update for Surface Hub:

The Amazing Microsoft Whiteboard

As you might have seen from us on stage in Shanghai, there is a litany of inking innovation coming to the Microsoft Whiteboard app on Windows 10, such as intelligent digital inking, geometry recognition, table conversion and automatic table shading. Microsoft Whiteboard will come first to Surface Hub starting in mid-June as an app update, with the vision to bring it to more Windows 10 devices later this year (including the Surface Studio and Surface Pro) with exclusive capabilities for Office 365 subscribers.

Real-time collaborative coauthoring in Whiteboard – which enables teams to ink with each other in real time across Surface Hub devices – for lack of a better term: is magic. Additional Microsoft Whiteboard features include new inking tools, awesome ink effects as well as more ways to integrate existing content into the whiteboard canvas to create the ultimate digital workspace. Stay tuned for more as Whiteboard comes to more Windows 10 devices.

With the new Microsoft Whiteboard App, teams around the world can visually collaborate in real time with intelligent digital ink.

With the new Microsoft Whiteboard App, teams around the world can visually collaborate in real time with intelligent digital ink.

Single sign-on and deeper integration with Office 365

We’ve made Surface Hub more personal by adding the ability for people to sign-in to their Office 365 account from the welcome screen or the updated start menu. This essentially turns Surface Hub into your personal Windows 10 device, and allows you to navigate quickly to Office 365 apps and cloud-saved content including:

  • Content stored in your OneDrive
  • Most recently used (MRU) documents panels inside Office applications like Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Integration with Microsoft Teams, which can be accessed today via the Edge browser
Improved Welcome Screen makes it easier than ever to find your meeting and get started on Surface Hub.

Improved Welcome Screen makes it easier than ever to find your meeting and get started on Surface Hub.

Improved Office 365 integration makes it easier than ever to access your important documents, making the Surface Hub your own PC while in the meeting you scheduled.

Improved Office 365 integration makes it easier than ever to access your important documents, making the Surface Hub your own PC while in the meeting you scheduled.

Enhanced audio, Miracast, and Skype experiences

I love my Surface Hub meetings because they feel as natural as being in the same room with the team. To create that sense of being in the same room the audio experience is critical. To ensure Surface Hub has the best possible audio experience, we worked with the audio masters at Dolby to optimize the audio experience for human speech.

Other updates include improved Miracast projection to make it faster and more reliable.

Skype controls have been simplified too, making it quicker and easier to call, message and share content with remote participants. Now you can easily scroll through the scheduled meetings on the welcome screen with the new meetings carousel and see who’s been invited to each meeting before you join.

Now it’s easier than ever to collaborate with colleagues via the improved Skype experience on Surface Hub.

Now it’s easier than ever to collaborate with colleagues via the improved Skype experience on Surface Hub.

New manageability and security features

Security and privacy of data are of the upmost importance to us. To ensure what happens in your meeting stays in the meeting, we’ve added several security and manageability features in the latest round of updates including:

  • The ability to set Surface Hub to wipe all data at the end of each session by default;
  • The option to require BitLocker encryption for USB ports to prevent malware and other security threats;
  • Support for additional Mobile Device Management (MDM) features, so IT administrators can change settings remotely; and
  • Support for two-factor authentication, to enable users to approve an authentication request easily on their companion device.

And more…

We are now also offering a 5-year Extended Hardware Service for Surface Hub to match the business-critical value our customers are placing on their investment.

Meeting experiences and process transformation enabled by Surface Hub will continue to evolve with a growing pipeline of Windows 10 apps built with Surface Hub in mind, including newcomers AirServer, and SAP Digital Boardroom, plus apps that work great on the Edge browser, such as iObeya.

The team is incredibly passionate about helping people be more productive and bring their ideas to life. We believe the best work is done through engaged teams. People who get together, challenge each other, and work together to accomplish so much more than they would have working independently.

Our goal is that these improvements and continued innovation and investments will help people around the world collaborate and create in innovative ways. It’s truly never been a better time to purchase Surface Hub!

Find out more about Surface Hub and the Windows 10 Creators Update on the Surface Hub update history page and the Support Site.

Thanks,

Ryan

For a deeper dive into the Windows 10 Creators Update coming to Surface Hub, click here:

*Requires OneDrive for Business

Announcing Project Rome iOS SDK

Project Rome is a platform for enabling seamless cross-device and cross-platform experiences. The philosophy behind Project Rome is simple. App experiences shouldn’t be tied to a single device any more than data should be tied to a single device. Your apps, like your data, should travel with you.

Previously, this meant switching between devices, while maintaining a single user experience, on a different Windows device. A few months ago, Project Rome features were extended to the Android platform, allowing you to start an app session on your Android phone and continue it on a Windows PC, an Xbox One or even a Surface Hub.

Now, Project Rome support is also being extended to the iOS platform. You can download the Project Rome SDK for iOS here.

Revisiting the Contoso music app

If you have been following the evolution of Project Rome, you’ll be familiar with our developer friend Paul and his example Contoso Music app. Paul was originally introduced in a blog post on Cross-device experiences to help us understand a typical Project Rome scenario.

He expanded his UWP music streaming app to run across multiple Windows devices tied to the same Microsoft Account (MSA). Using Project Rome, Paul changed how his app worked so a user streaming a song on a Windows PC could then transfer that song to his Xbox. Then, as he got ready to go out for a run, he could transfer the current playlist to his Windows Phone.

In the subsequent post, Paul developed an Android version of Contoso Music app and used the Project Rome Android SDK to allow a user to start playing a song on her Android phone and continue playing it on a Windows device when he or she got home. The Contoso Music app was now cross-platform, transferring smoothly from one platform to the next.

Extending to iOS

Let’s imagine that based on the success of his Windows and Android versions, Paul develops an iOS version of Contoso Music. When examining his telemetry after a few months, Paul sees that all his apps are doing well, like his Windows and Android versions. However, there is a common theme in the user feedback; users are finding it difficult handling device switching. So, Paul wants to enable a scenario in which a user can listen to music on the iPhone over headphones, then enter the living room and immediately switch to playing the same music over his Xbox, connected to quality speakers.

With the Project Rome iOS SDK, Paul can create a bridge between iOS devices and Windows devices in two stages:

  • The RemoteSystems API allows the app to discover Windows devices the user owns. The RemoteSystems API will allow the Contoso Music app to discover these devices on the same network or through the cloud.
  • Once discovered, the RemoteLauncher API will launch the Contoso Music app on another Windows device.

How Paul gets it done

In order for Paul’s user to switch from playing music on an iOS device to a Windows device, his app must find out about the other device. This action requires using MSA OAuth to get permission to query for devices and then attempting to discover additional devices, as shown in the diagram below.


// Asynchronously initialize the Rome Platform.
  // Pass in self as class implements the CDOAuthCodeProviderDelegate protocol.
  [CDPlatform startWithOAuthCodeProviderDelegate:self completion:^(NSError* clientError) {
                                              if (clientError)
                                              {
                                                  // Handle error
                                                  return;
                                              }

                                              // Handle success, show discovery screen
                                      }];

// Implementation of CDOAuthCodeProviderDelegate
// The Rome SDK calls this delegate method when it needs an OAuth Access Code from the application.
- (NSError*)getAccessCode:(NSString*)signinUrl completion: (void (^)(NSError* error, NSString* accessCode))completion {

// Stash away the callback the SDK gives us
_getTokenCallback = completion;

  // Show the interactive OAuth Web View flow.
  // Once the OAuth flow completes or fails, invoke this callback.
  ...

// Return nil as there was no error
  return nil;
}

Once initialized, Paul’s app can discover all devices in the user’s MSA device graph by initiating discovery using CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManager. Information about discovered devices are raised through the CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManagerDelegate protocol. In In our example, we store each discovered device within an NSMutableArray property called discoveredSystems.


// Create instance and pass ‘self’ as the delegate as it implements CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManagerDelegate.
CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManager* remoteSystemDiscoveryManager = [[CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManager alloc] initWithDelegate:self];

// Start discovery.
[remoteSystemDiscoveryManager startDiscovery];

// CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManagerDelegate implementation
- (void)remoteSystemDiscoveryManager:
            (CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManager*)discoveryManager
                             didFind:(CDRemoteSystem*)remoteSystem {
  @synchronized(self) {
     [self.discoveredSystems addObject:remoteSystem];
      // Refresh UI based upon updated state in discoveredSystems e.g. populate table
   }
}

- (void)remoteSystemDiscoveryManager:
            (CDRemoteSystemDiscoveryManager*)discoveryManager
                           didUpdate:(CDRemoteSystem*)remoteSystem {
  NSString* id = remoteSystem.id;

// Loop through and update the Remote System instance if previously seen.
  @synchronized(self) {
    for (unsigned i = 0; i < self.discoveredSystems.count; i++) {
      CDRemoteSystem* currentRemoteSystem =
          [self.discoveredSystems objectAtIndex:i];
      NSString* currentId = currentRemoteSystem.id;

      if ([currentId isEqualToString:id]) {
        [self.discoveredSystems replaceObjectAtIndex:i withObject:remoteSystem];
        break;
      }
    }

       // Refresh UI based upon updated state in discoveredSystems e.g. populate table
  }
}

The user can now select the device he wants to transfer music to from the list of devices that have been discovered. From the selected CDRemoteSystem, an instance of CDRemoteSystemConnectionRequest is instantiated as shown in the sequence diagram below. Using CDRemoteLauncher, Paul is then able to remotely launch the app on the selected device while also including necessary additional contextual information, such as the song currently playing.

Here’s how to remote-launch http://www.bing.com to your device:


// Create a connection request using the CDRemoteSystem instance selected by the user
  CDRemoteSystemConnectionRequest* request =
       // Using the RemoteSystem above, [self.discoveredSystems addObject:remoteSystem];
      [[CDRemoteSystemConnectionRequest alloc] initWithRemoteSystem:system];

NSString* url = @”http://www.bing.com”;

  [CDRemoteLauncher
           launchUri:uri
           withRequest:request
           withCompletion:^(CDRemoteLauncherUriStatus status) {
            // Update UI on launch status
            }];

Voila! Paul has easily augmented his app with cross-device support for iOS.

Wrapping up

Project Rome breaks down barriers by changing notions about what an “app” is and focusing on the user no matter where they are working or what device they are using. An app no longer necessarily means something that is tied to a given device, instead it can be something that exists between your devices and is optimized for the right device at the right time. Today, Project Rome works on Windows 10, Android and iOS. Stay tuned to see what comes next.

To learn more about Project Rome, check out the links below.

Windows 10 Creators Update coming April 11, Surface expands to more markets

Creativity has led the inspiration of our world’s greatest inventors, architects, educators, entrepreneurs, developers, and students, delivering advancements that move our world forward. Today, people value creativity more than ever, placing us on the cusp of a new wave of exploration, advancement, and impact.

We designed Windows 10 to empower the creator in all of us. To us, that means that everyone has the power to dream big, whether that involves starting a company, developing a lesson plan, inventing a product, developing or broadcasting games, or imagining a whole new world in Minecraft or mixed reality. And we want Windows to be the place you love to create and play, with the tools to help you make your mark on the world.

Windows 10 Creators Update coming April 11

Today, I’m excited to share our latest update to Windows 10, the Creators Update, will begin to roll out on April 11. The Creators Update is designed to spark and unleash creativity, bringing 3D and mixed reality to everyone and enabling every gamer to be a broadcaster. Beyond creativity, it brings new features to Microsoft Edge, additional security capabilities and privacy tools, and so much more.

Whether you’re already a Windows 10 customer or looking for a new Windows 10 device from Surface or our partners, here are just a few of the new features coming in the Windows 10 Creators Update.

3D for Everyone and enabling mixed reality

3D goldfish inside a fish bowl as created in the new Paint 3D app in Windows 10 as part of the Windows 10 Creators Update

With the new Paint 3D app in the Creators Update, it’s simple to create 3D objects from scratch, easily changing colors, stamping textures, or turning a 2D picture into a 3D work of art.

The 3D industry is estimated to grow by over 62% by 2020, and we want to empower everyone to experience, create and share in 3D with the Creators Update.

Most of us have been limited to a two-dimensional canvas with existing tools, yet we live in a multi-dimensional world. With 3D, we can communicate ideas and express ourselves better, and learn faster because it’s much more representative of the world we live in. The 3D industry is estimated to grow by over 62% by 2020, and we want to empower everyone to experience, create and share in 3D with the Creators Update.

Windows has long been home to creation, with the original Paint seeing over 100 million monthly users as one of the most popular creation tools. With the new Paint 3D app in the Creators Update, it’s simple to create 3D objects from scratch, easily changing colors, stamping textures, or turning a 2D picture into a 3D work of art. Remix3D.com offers pre-made 3D art in a growing online library for your use or you can share your own creation with this creative community.

From 3D to mixed reality, the Windows 10 Creators Update enables immersive experiences that blur the lines between the physical and virtual worlds. Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, and Lenovo will ship the world’s first Windows Mixed Reality-enabled headsets with the Creators Update, starting at just $299 USD later this year. These headsets will contain built-in sensors to enable inside-out, six-degrees of freedom, allowing for easy setup and free movement without the need for external markers or sensors in the wall. These devices will light up with new, immersive Windows Mixed Reality apps and experiences, which developers are creating on the recently available Windows Mixed Reality dev kits.

Watch, participate, chat and interact in real-time with Beam

Built-in game broadcasting on Windows 10. Now you can effortlessly stream your gameplay using the Game Bar—just hit Windows + G, click Broadcast, and start streaming on Beam—all without the need for additional log-ins.

Built-in game broadcasting on Windows 10. Now you can effortlessly stream your gameplay using the Game Bar—just hit Windows + G, click Broadcast, and start streaming on Beam—all without the need for additional log-ins.

We’re committed to making Xbox the best place to create and play games across Windows 10 and Xbox One. As part of that, we are unifying players across Xbox console and PC with Xbox Live and through programs like Xbox Play Anywhere, which enables you to buy a game once and play it on both your Xbox One and Windows 10 PC.

With the Creators Update, we are delivering more ways to play, interact, share and enjoy across Windows 10 and Xbox One. With Beam, we’re inviting Creators on Windows 10 PC and Xbox One to stream gameplay and interact with community in real-time using Beam’s ultra low-latency – no extra hardware or software required. With Beam, you don’t just watch your favorite game streams, you can chat, interact and participate with streamers and community in entirely new ways.

With Windows 10 Game Mode our goal is to offer the best and most consistent gaming experience on your Windows 10 PC by dedicating more system resources to your PC games. Once you’ve enabled Game Mode, you can apply it to any game. Learn more about the corresponding Xbox One update and new features here.

Microsoft Edge is faster and safer with better browsing and entertainment

Tab Preview in Microsoft Edge with the Windows 10 Creators Update.

Set your tabs aside for easy access; Microsoft Edge is the default reader for books in Windows Store.

Because so much time is spent online, we’ve designed Microsoft Edge to be the best browser for Windows 10. People are choosing Microsoft Edge because it is safer and faster than Chrome, with better battery life. With all the dangerous security threats online today, Microsoft Edge blocks 9% more phishing sites and 13% more malware than Chrome* – helping protect your identity and information; speed matters on the Web and according to Google’s own benchmarks, Microsoft Edge is faster than Chrome**. Finally, Microsoft Edge makes your battery last longer so you can stream up to 1.5 hours of video longer than Chrome***.

But that’s not all. With the Creators Update, we’ve added new features like advanced tab management to help you find, organize and open tabs you’ve set aside without leaving the page you’re on. You can now discover and get your favorite e-books in Windows Store and read them in Microsoft Edge across all of your Windows 10 devices. And, it is the only browser that can play Netflix movies and TV shows in 4K Ultra HD resolution ****.

From sleeping better to easily managing your children’s screen time

Sometimes it’s the little things that delight the most. And with the Windows 10 Creators Update, there are many delightful updates and features based on your feedback.

By reducing the blue light emitted by your screen, the night light feature helps you sleep better. With night light, when you’re working late your brain is more ready to power down for a good night’s sleep. Smartphone users love this feature and now, it’s coming to Windows 10 with the Creators Update.

The mini view feature lets you keep an ever-present small window on top of what you’re doing. This means you can do things like binge-watch your favorite show, carry on a Skype conversation or control your music, regardless of what else you’re working on.

With the Windows 10 Creators Update, parents familiar with screen time limits for Windows 10 will now find a similar set of controls for Xbox One. With screen time limits parents can manage how much time their children play games across the console and PC, giving you an extra hand, say, when your younger family member has played enough Forza Horizon 3 for the day. With screen time limits, parents can set a daily time allowance for each child and your Xbox One or Windows 10 PC will automatically sign them out when time is up. For Windows 10, you can even get a report telling you what your child played each week. To set up screen time limits, head over to account.microsoft.com/family, sign in with your parent account, and select “Screen time” for your child’s account.

Windows Hello can use any paired iPhone, Android or Windows Phone to detect when you step away from your PC or tablet, automatically locking it behind you for an extra measure of security and privacy. This remote lock feature works with smartphones, fitness bands or any device that’s paired to your PC or tablet.

Additional security and privacy protection

The new Windows Defender Security Center dashboard coming with the Windows 10 Creators Update gives you visibility of your device security, health and online safety.

The new Windows Defender Security Center dashboard coming with the Windows 10 Creators Update gives you visibility of your device security, health, and online safety.

Customers like MARS, Adventist Health Systems, and the Australian Department of Human Services are choosing Windows 10 because it is the most secure enterprise platform. Businesses and people at home need advanced protection because security experts are seeing increased efforts to make common malware and ransomware more prevalent and difficult to track and defend against, putting everyone at greater risk. With Windows 10, we’ve built the most robust security protection into Windows to protect you from these threats whether you are visiting a website, sending an email or storing files in the cloud.

With the Creators Update, we offer a new service to help you monitor your security, the Windows Defender Security Center. It offers a single dashboard display so you can control your security options from one place – everything from anti-virus, network and firewall protection; to assessing your device performance and health; to security controls for your apps and browser; to family safety options. And there’s more: The Device Health Advisor gives you information on the vital signs of your device, and new settings give you more control over app installation. For our business customers, the Creators Update will continue to bring new tools and capabilities that help simplify IT – making it easier to better deploy, manage and support Windows 10 devices – and to help stomp security threats.

Your privacy deeply matters to us and to you, and the Creators Update makes it easier than ever to manage your privacy with Windows 10 and other Microsoft services with a new set up experience that lets you choose the settings that are right for you. A new Microsoft privacy dashboard lets you see and manage your activity data across multiple Microsoft services.

The Creators Update will start to roll out via Windows Update on April 11. We will be rolling it out in a measured way to ensure the best possible customer experience.

Surface Book and Surface Studio coming to more markets

Surface Studio with mouse and keyboard

Surface Studio turns your desk into a creative studio. It is a new class of device that transforms from a desktop PC into a powerful digital canvas, unlocking a more natural and immersive way to create.

Since we introduced Surface Studio, Surface Dial, and Surface Book with Performance Base last fall, we’ve heard amazing feedback on how these devices are transforming the way people bring ideas to life. Surface Studio has captured people’s imagination with a completely new way to create at your desk. And Surface Book with Performance Base has delivered an unprecedented combination of performance, battery life, and portability. We’ve heard from engineers, developers, Silicon Valley startups, designers, and photographers about how Surface devices not only help them get more done but to interact with their work in new ways. To help meet the demand for Surface devices as part of the modern office setting we are investing in partnerships with companies like Steelcase to help businesses unlock the full creative potential of their employees. With Surface and Windows 10 we are helping people realize their full creative potential and we are excited to bring that experience to more people around the world today.

Surface Book with Performance base is available for pre-order today in Austria, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom and will be available for purchase on April 20th. And, Surface Studio and Surface Dial are available for pre-order today in Australia, Canada and New Zealand and will be available for purchase starting April 20th.

Windows 10 Creators Update for Surface Hub

Last but definitely not least, Surface Hub customers worldwide will receive the Windows 10 Creators Update for Surface Hub. The update delivers some of the top requested features to make Surface Hub an even more powerful collaboration device. The updates include an improved new start screen that allows you to sign on with your credentials and access your Office 365 apps and OneDrive materials as well as new manageability tools to simplify large-scale deployments. Apps like Skype for Business are being improved to help you connect better and the Whiteboard app will now easily enable real-time collaboration between Surface Hubs. Expect a more detailed update on the great Surface Hub improvements coming in Creators Update before April 11th.

Stay tuned right here on the Windows Blog for more information soon about how to get the Windows 10 Creators Update. We are so excited to deliver the Creators Update to you and for more of you around the world to experience the amazing Surface devices that bring creativity to life.

Thanks,

Yusuf

*Based on NSS Labs report.
**More information on benchmark here.
***Windows data found here.
****Exclusive DRM privilege to allow 4K stream for Microsoft Edge and Netflix app on Windows 10 on compatible Windows PCs.

New Year, New Dev – Windows IoT Core

To wrap up the “New Year, New Dev” blog series, we’ll go into using Windows 10 IoT Core and show how easy it is to start developing applications to deploy on IoT devices such as the Raspberry Pi 3. If you haven’t had a chance to read the first two posts in this series, you can find them here:

  1. New Year, New Dev: Sharpen your C# Skills
  2. New Year, New Dev: Developing your idea into a UWP app

Let’s begin by explaining what Windows 10 IoT Core actually is.

Windows 10 IoT Core is a version of Windows 10 that is optimized to run on smaller IoT devices, with or without a display, that allows you to build apps using the rich Universal Windows Platform (UWP). In fact, one of the goals for UWP was to enable the same application to run on PC, Xbox, HoloLens, Surface Hub or IoT Core devices. This enables you, as the developer, to create a core application with custom, adaptive user experiences appropriate for these devices.

In UWP there are extension APIs available to do things that are specific to your platform or device. For example, there are extension SDKs that give you access to unique features in Windows Mobile and on Surface Hubs. The extension SDKs for Windows IoT give you access to the APIs that can manage things like lights, sensors, motors, buses and much more.

Windows IoT Core supports a wide range of devices. Here are some examples:

Out of the box, you can use the UWP programming language you’re most comfortable with to build apps for IoT Core; these languages support both apps with or without a User Interface (aka “background applications”) and are shipped with Visual Studio by default.

  • C#
  • C++
  • JavaScript
  • Visual Basic

Alternatively, you can use one of the following IoT-focused languages; these languages can only be Background Applications.

  • C/C++ with Arduino wiring
  • js
  • Python

To use one of the “IoT focused” languages, you’ll need to install the Windows IoT Core Project Templates Visual Studio Extension. You can download these right from Visual Studio by going to Tools > Extensions and Updates. Or, you can install it separately by downloading it (go here for VS2015 or here for VS 2017).

For the purposes of today’s post, we will show how to install Windows 10 IoT on a device, how to install the tools you’ll need, and share several sample applications to get you started.

Getting started

The IoT Core team has made it very easy to get started by providing a flow-based Get Started page on the Windows IoT Core web page. Let me take you through the steps:

Step 1:

Go to the Get Started page here and you’ll be greeted with Step 1: Select Your Hardware. Choose the device you’re using, for this post, I’ll pick Raspberry Pi 3:

Step 2:

Select the route you want to install Windows 10 IoT Core. The most common option is to install it directly to a blank microSD Card:

Step 3:

Next, you’ll get to pick what version of Windows 10 IoT Core you want to use.

Important Note: Normally, you’d choose the non-insider version. Only choose the Insider Preview if you have the Insider Preview UWP SDK installed in Visual Studio 2017. The SDK version has to match the OS version on the device in order to deploy to it.

Step 4:

You’re done! Now click the Next button to navigate to the next phase of the setup process, getting the tools.

Installing the tools

During this phase of Getting Started, you’ll go through four high level steps. At the last step, you’ll be running an application on your IoT device! Here are the steps:

  1. Get the Tools
  2. Set up your device
  3. Set up Visual Studio
  4. Write your first app

1 – Get the Tools

In this step, you’ll download and install an amazing tool, the Windows 10 IoT Core Dashboard (approx. 54MB). This tool has a lot of features that makes using Windows 10 IoT core much easier than it has ever been. Once you’ve installed it, find it in your Start Menu’s apps list or search for “IoT Dashboard.”

You should now see a Start page like the following:

2 – Set up your device

With the Dashboard running, you can now set up your device by clicking the “Set up a new device” button. This makes the installation process very easy, just a few selections and a click of the button.

Here’s a screenshot of the “Set up a new device” page. Take note of the version of Windows IoT Core you’re installing. The current version is 14393, otherwise known as the Anniversary Update.

Once this is done, you’re good to go! Just remove the microSD card from your PC and insert it into the Raspberry Pi and boot it up.

Note: The first time boot-up will take longer than normal because it is performing an initial configuration. Be patient and do not power down during this. If you have any trouble and it doesn’t boot, just repeat the setup again to get a fresh start.

3 – Setup Visual Studio

Now let’s review what you have installed for tools.

If you do not have Visual Studio 2017 installed

You can download and install Visual Studio 2017 Community edition, for free, from here. This is not a “express” version, the Community edition is a feature-rich version of Visual Studio with all the tools you need to develop UWP applications and much more.

When running the installer, make sure you check off the Windows Platform Apps workload to get the Tools and SDK. Here’s what the installer looks like:

If you already have Visual Studio 2017 installed

If you already installed Visual Studio, then let’s check if you have the UWP tools installed. In Visual Studio, drop down the Help menu and select “About Visual Studio.” You’ll see a modal window pop out, inside the “Installed Products” are you can scroll down to check for “Visual Studio Tools for Universal Windows Apps”:

If you do not have them installed, you can use the standalone SDK installer to install them (see UWP SDK paragraph below) or rerun the Visual Studio 2017 installer and select the “Universal Windows Platform development” workload to install it.

Note: You can use Visual Studio 2015, just make sure you’re on Update 3 in addition to having the UWP SDK installed.

UWP SDK Version

Now that you have Visual Studio 2017 and the UWP tools installed, you’ll want to have the UWP SDK version that matches the Windows 10 IoT Core version you installed. As I mentioned earlier, the current version is 14393.

If you just installed Visual Studio, this would be the SDK version you have installed already. However, if you do need the 14393 SDK, you can get the standalone installer from here (note: if you’ve take the Windows IoT Core Insider Preview option, you can get the Insider Preview SDK from here).

TIP: Install the IoT Core Project templates

At this point, you can build and deploy to an IoT device simply because you have the UWP SDK installed. However, you can get a productivity boost by installing the IoT Core project templates. The templates contain project types such as: Background Application, Console Application and Arduino Wiring application. Download and install the templates from here.

Write your first app

At this point, your device and your developer environment is set up. Now it’s time to start writing apps! You may be familiar with the “Hello World” app as being the first application you build when trying a new language or platform. In the world of IoT, these are known as “Hello Blinky” apps.

There are several excellent Hello Blinky sample applications (when we say headless we mean with no user interface; you can still have a display connected to the system if you wish) to help you get a jump-start:

There are even more Microsoft authored samples located at our Windows IoT Dev Center.

You can also check out what the community has built on websites such as Hackster.io where developers open source their Windows 10 IoT Core projects, build specs and source code. There are hundreds of projects available; a few examples are:

There are unlimited possibilities with Window 10 IoT core, from home automation to industrial robotics or even environmental monitoring. Your app doesn’t have to be a complex system, you can build a UWP app to build a smart mirror, turn your hallway lights when motion is sensed, or use a light sensor to open your shades at dawn and close them at sunset!  We look forward to seeing what you build with Windows 10 IoT Core; send us a tweet @WindowsDev and share your creations with us!

Resources

Announcing UWP Community Toolkit 1.3

The UWP Community Toolkit continues to grow at a rapid speed thanks to the ideas and contributions from the community. Over the last period, over 82 percent of the contributions came from the developer community (59 contributors). Thank you!

Today, we are happy to announce the largest update to the toolkit since the launch a few months ago!

You can get started following these steps, or preview the latest features by installing the UWP Community Toolkit Sample App from the Windows Store.

As a reminder, the toolkit can be used in any app (across PC, Xbox One, Mobile, HoloLens and Surface Hub devices) targeting Windows 10 November Update (10.0.10586) or above. The few features that rely on newer OS updates are clearly marked in the documentation and in the Sample App.

Here’s just a summary of what’s new in Version 1.3:

  1. Controls. Several new controls were added in this release, including some very popular requests from the community:
    • WrapPanel. Positions child elements in sequential position from left to right or top to bottom, breaking content to the next line.
    • TextboxMask and TextBoxRegex (attached properties). Allows setting common or custom masks (like telephone numbers) for input.
    • SurfaceDialTextboxHelper (attached property). Extends any Textbox control to be controlled directly from a Surface Dial.
    • MarkdownTextBlock. Embeds and renders in real-time markdown syntax.
    • TileControl. Enables repeatable tile content.
    • ScrollHeader. Builds upon FadeHeader and enables Quick Return, Sticky and Fade behaviors.
    • Expander. Provides an extendable container to show/hide any content by clicking the header.
    • AdvancedCollectionView: Builds upon CollectionView and easily sorts and filters collections before displaying them.
    • Loading control. Shows an animation with some content when the user should wait in some tasks of the app.
  2. Services
    • OneDrive service. Roam user files through the new OneDrive service with a simplified API model (similar to StorageFolder). The new service makes it easy to authenticate OneDrive users and more in the same consistent way you have come to expect from the toolkit services.
    • Microsoft Translator Service. Translate text in 60 languages supported by Microsoft Translator Services. The free tier supports up to 2 million requests per month.
    • We’ve added support for geographical metadata to tweets.
  3. Animations
    • Light. Add light effects to your page or controls to draw user attention.
    • Reorder grid animations (attached property). Add smooth animations when resizing a grid view.
    • ParallaxService. Allows to create a parallax effect for items contained within an element that scrolls like a ScrollViewer or ListView.
  4. Notifications
    • New toast features. Allows group toasts notifications (only available on Creator Update).
  5. Accessibility. With the support of the community, we started the journey to add accessibility capabilities to all the controls in the toolkit. You can track progress here.
  6. Sample App
    • The Sample App now has embedded documentation (using the new Markdown control).
    • The Sample App provide pointers to a few external OSS resources, for example, the newly released Windows SDK for Google Analytics.
    • It is now available for preview on Xbox One.
  7. UserVoice
    • The community can now submit and vote for new features on UserVoice.

If you are interested in contributing, please join us on Github!

Surface Hub announces customer subscription, deployment options and application innovation

Today, ISE 2017, the largest AV and integrated systems conference in the world, kicks off in Amsterdam. The Surface Hub team is pleased to share exciting news from our partners and customers on the eve of ISE.

In December, we shared details on the momentum and adoption Surface Hub is seeing in the workplace. By the end of 2016, nine months since our launch, we shipped Surface Hubs to over 2,000 customers in 24 markets. We’ve seen single orders as small as one unit and as large as 1,500 units. The demand for Surface Hub has been incredible, leading us to introduce new ways for our partners and customers and application developers to take advantage of everything that Surface Hub has to offer. From new service offerings, to new procurement methods and an ever-growing application ecosystem, here’s how Surface Hub is gearing up to have another incredible year in 2017:

Announcing New Subscription, Deployment Options

Following the success of Surface as a Service, we’re introducing a similar way to help customers procure Surface Hub. I’m happy to announce we will now offer Surface Hub via a subscription-based model, including initial investment and configuration costs. Recent research from IDC shows that businesses have a clear appetite for this type of subscription model. With 73 percent of respondents expecting to move to subscription-based IT procurement over the next three years.

Additionally, we’re happy to formally launch the Surface Hub Value Added Distributors Program for Opportunity Resellers (VAD-OR). The Surface Hub VAD-OR Program allows select Surface Hub distributors to deliver the same quality services to Opportunity Resellers without the typical requirements for building a long-term transactional business.

We are very pleased to see that our channel partners are innovating with us to bring these propositions to market. The first partner to offer Surface Hub as a Service and the VAD-OR programs to its customers in the U.K. and other markets soon is our great partner, Maverick.

This service is a real channel game changer for the collaboration market. Many companies offer various forms of leasing; our process will be far more sophisticated and accessible. We will be kicking off this service in partnership with Microsoft this year on a country by country basis to offer Surface Hub as a Service. This will enable resellers to access a subscription model then only have the Hub in place for as long as they need. The successful implementation of this type of program will create a far quicker sales cycle with more sophisticated solutions.

— Jon Sidwick, VP of Maverick Europe

ALSO, who was one of our first partners to offer Surface as a Service, will also be offering the Surface Hub VAD-OR program.

Microsoft Surface Hub is a perfect solution for ALSO’s strategy to foster its position as a value added solution provider. Partners are offered numerous complementary services from ALSO like logistics, trainings, installations, network integration or financial services to fulfill their customer needs. This solution presents the perfect opportunity for our resellers to win big projects without jeopardizing their liquidity and be a full solution provider for their customers.

— Philipp Grüter, European Partner Manager, ALSO

Surface Hub Try & Buy Program

In addition to Surface Hub as a Service and the VAD-OR programs, I am proud to also announce the Surface Hub Try & Buy Program. Beginning February 15th, resellers across the U.S., U.K., Europe and Asia will provide their customers with Hubs for 30 days before requiring a commitment to purchase a larger set of devices. We know once customers try Surface Hub they will love it.

We are excited to announce that the following partners have already confirmed their commitment to participate in the Try & Buy program:

Europe & Asia

U.K.

U.S. & Canada

Partners like AVI-SPL, a global supplier and certified partner for Surface Hub, make programs like these possible.

AVI-SPL views Microsoft as a critical component to the evolving advanced collaboration needs of the enterprise community and digital workplace and workforce of the future. Since AVI-SPL’s partnership with Microsoft began to accelerate with the introduction of Surface Hub technology design, install, and support services – our practice continues to rapidly evolve and grow as we provide clients with essential professional and advanced services around their Microsoft needs, including Office 365, Skype for Business, licensing, deployments, and migrations.

— Joe Laezza, Senior VP of Unified Communications and Collaboration, AVI-SPL

Expanding App Ecosystem

Surface Hub can run any Universal Windows Platform (UWP) app, and provides an unparalleled opportunity for large-screen pen and touch interactions that can transform business processes and foster new ways of collaboration across teams. Today, over 20 industry-leading application developers have designed specific experiences for Surface Hub. These apps include robust collaboration applications as well as industry-specific apps for healthcare, education, manufacturing, design and construction. One of those great app partners is Bullclip:

Our design and construction customers rely on being able to communicate and collaborate on complex drawings and documents, no matter where they are in the world. The Surface Hub unlocks incredible opportunities in this way. On-site Bullclip users can collaborate with-real time ink on drawings between the Hub and other devices, and the Hub’s high-fidelity and pressure sensitive screen makes the experience just like using pen and paper. The Surface Hub is a perfect companion to Bullclip and Drawboard. The days of printing A0 sheets are gone.

— Nathan Field, Head of Marketing, Drawboard

Another amazing innovation designed specifically for Surface Hub is from Stormboard, who has just released a new 2-way collaborative whiteboard feature. Stormboard users could always collaborate in real-time, but the sketching component was limited to one user at one time. Today’s release lets unlimited users in unlimited locations on any device draw together to help turn their ideas into action.

The Microsoft Surface Hub is a fantastic device for boardroom collaboration. Our customers tell us their favorite way to use Stormboard is on the Surface Hub. The new multi-user white-boarding lets visual thinkers easily capture their ideas in a real-time shared space instantly in the same room or around the world.

— Reg Cheramy, CEO of Stormboard

We are committed to working with our customers to make sure as many customers as possible can utilize the best Surface Hub has to offer. By bringing options like the Surface Hub as a Service, Try & Buy and Opportunity Resellers Program to market, our customers now have multiple options to experience and implement the Surface Hub technology within their organization and bring them one step closer to achieving total Digital Transformation.

As you can see, we’re very excited about the momentum that new programs like these drive with Surface Hub. If you’re a partner or customer that is interested in finding out more about what Surface Hub has to offer, check out more information here.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year – for Surface!

Our team gets so excited about meeting new Surface users and hearing their feedback, and we get to meet a lot more this holiday season! From Surface Pro, to Surface Book, to Surface Studio, to Surface Hub, we’re having our best holiday ever.

Surface family of devices including Surface Studio, Surface Book and Surface Pro 4

In October, the unveiling of Surface Studio and Surface Dial captured people’s imagination with a completely new way to create at your desk. The announcement of Surface Book with Performance Base took the laptop with industry-leading customer satisfaction and made it even better by adding twice the graphics power and 30% more battery.

Surface Dial shown on screen of Surface Studio

November was our best month ever for consumer Surface sales. The Best Buy-exclusive Surface bundle sold out on the first day. The momentum was seen worldwide. In the UK, we had the best single week for Surface ever and in Germany the Surface Pen became the best seller in PC Accessories on Amazon.com for over 12 hours.

Surface Studio is shipping and people love it.

The excitement for Surface Studio is clear – evidenced by the 10+ million people that have viewed our launch video and the hundreds of thousands who watched the excitement of a fun unboxing of a Surface Studio. But what makes me excited is seeing how people are using, and loving their Surface Studios. Digital artists, to architects, to executives are using this beautiful PC to get things done and be their most creative.

More people are switching from Macs to Surface than ever before. Our trade-in program for MacBooks was our best ever, and the combination of excitement for the innovation of Surface coupled with the disappointment of the new MacBook Pro – especially among professionals – is leading more and more people to make the switch to Surface, like this. It seems like a new review recommending Surface over MacBook comes out daily. This makes our team so proud, because it means we’re doing good work.

Surface Book with Performance Base is now available in Australia and New Zealand.

More markets for Surface Book with Performance Base: Coming off strong momentum in the US and Canada, Surface Book with Performance Base is now available in Australia and New Zealand, and we’re excited to announce we will make it available in more markets. Starting early next quarter, Surface Book with Performance Base will go on sale in Austria, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Switzerland and the UK.

Surface Hub is also gaining momentum as it continues to change how organizations collaborate and create. To add to our already-stellar momentum, we’re excited to share more details about the ways Surface Hub is helping teams in the workplace be more productive. Check it out:

By the end of 2016, nine months since our launch, we will have shipped Surface Hubs to over 2,000 customers in 24 markets.

The demand we are seeing with Surface Hub far exceeds our expectations, even though we knew it was a game-changing product. By the end of 2016, nine months since our launch, we will have shipped Surface Hubs to over 2,000 customers in 24 markets. The average deal size we see in the pipeline is approximately 50 units, but we’ve seen orders as large as 1,500 units to a large car manufacturer. This makes our team so, so proud.*

We’ve ramped up Surface Hub production and it’s available for customers worldwide. Resellers worldwide have units. To help meet the demand for Surface Hub, and to provide a great experience for customers, we’re adding more value-added partners who will resell Surface and provide 5-star service to our customers.

We’re introducing a Surface Hub Try-and-Buy Program.

We’re introducing a Surface Hub Try-and-Buy Program: We will enable a select set of our resellers to provide customers Hubs for 30 days before the committing to purchasing a large set of devices. This will launch in US and European Surface Hub markets this winter, and in Asia pacific at a later date. We have the data to show that this is a winner program, because people and businesses that use Surface Hub are amazed by it – and really want their business to use Surface Hub.

Microsoft Surface Hub

We’ve added new Surface Hub features and programs. In a February 2016 study, Forrester estimated that the ROI of integrating a Surface Hub into an organization was 138%. They measured meeting time saved per meeting to be 15 – 23 minutes and sales as a result of the Surface Hub were up 20% with a payback period is nine months. We believe our momentum in just nine months proves the study correct, and we’ve added some features that our customers have asked for most upgrade executive offices and conferences rooms around the world – with the power of a software-driven product:

  • Inking support across Word, Excel and PowerPoint. People are loving using Pen on Surface Hub, now we let them do it in the most used Office apps!
  • Support for simultaneous Pen and Touch. People, especially people that have used Surfaces, expect these things to work together. They do now!
  • Save & recall Whiteboards directly through OneDrive. If we do important work together, let’s make sure we can save it and share it!
  • Support for 3rd-party peripherals like BiAmp TesireForte CI, Jabra 810, Logitech Group, Logitech PTZ Pro and Polycom CX5100. We have amazing cameras and audio equipment people want to use in their conference rooms and exec offices. We now have more they can use!
  • Preloading PowerBI, OneDrive, and Photos apps. Every Surface Hub user should be able to analyze data better, get to their files, and go through the teams’ images.

As you can see, we’re so proud of the momentum and progress we are making with our Surface line-up. We’re learning a ton from Surface and Surface Hub customers and have an amazing team of hardware and software engineers dedicated to continually improving our products. You should expect the best and we expect to give you the best, today and tomorrow. We will continue to create new experiences for you that will change the way you create, collaborate and have an impact on your world in 2017, and beyond. Thanks for making it a great holiday season!

 Brian

*12/12/16: This blog post was updated to clarify Surface Hub demand data. 

Windows 10 Anniversary Update for Surface Hub now available

Since we began shipping Surface Hubs in March, we’ve been inspired by how customers such as Bartlitt Beck, European School of Management and TechnologyThe Children’s Hospital of PhiladelphiaCase Western Reserve University, SHoP Architects, Unfallkrankenhaus Berlin and the Royal Academy of Music have used Surface Hub to bring their organizations together to work, create and learn.

Demand for Surface Hub is strong. To date, we have shipped to over 600 customers in 24 different countries and that number continues to grow.

Demand for Surface Hub is strong. To date, we have shipped to over 600 customers in 24 different countries and that number continues to grow. A wide range of businesses and industries including healthcare, manufacturing, automotive, consulting, defense, finance, education, and design have embraced Surface Hub and brought their organizations to new levels of innovation and helped maximize efficiencies for their teams.

Over the last 6 months, we’ve worked closely with our customers to gather feedback on how we can continue to make the Surface Hub experience the best collaborative experience in the world. That feedback is front and center as we build out what’s next for Surface Hub.

Starting today, October 13th, the Windows 10 Anniversary Update for Surface Hub will be released to customers through Windows Update. The update will be released in stages with the goal to make it available to all customers by early November. Customers can find information to get ready to take the update in the Surface Hub Support Webpage.

As part of the Windows 10 Anniversary Update for Surface Hub, we’ve made deep investments in inking and content sharing experiences. Here are some of the great new features on their way:

Inking support across Word, Excel, and PowerPoint

People love inking on Surface Hub! With this update, we are extending inking across Word, Excel and PowerPoint. This means the people can now pick up a pen to start annotating directly on their Word docs or Excel sheets on the hub. We’ve also added a “Draw” toolbar in the ribbon with a variety of inking tools.

Support for simultaneous Pen and Touch

Now people can use both hands to edit content on the fly, or use a mixture of pen and touch when multiple people are collaborating with the Surface Hub. This is possible even while several apps are open simultaneously.

Save & Recall Whiteboards directly through OneDrive

One of the most loved features of Surface Hub is the ability to send whiteboards to meeting participants via e-mail as image or OneNote file. Now, we’ve added the ability to sign in, to save and recall Whiteboards directly from OneDrive. This helps people pick up right where their last meeting ended with a simple and secure sign-in experience.

Support for 3rd party peripherals

We’ve added support for third-party peripherals to offer choice and flexibility in audio, video and microphone configuration. Our Surface Hub and Skype for Business engineering teams have successfully tested the following devices. We will continue testing across our partner portfolio in the upcoming months to confirm additional peripherals.

  • BiAmp TesiraForte CI
  • Jabra 810
  • Logitech Group
  • Logitech PTZ Pro
  • Polycom CX5100

Additional Feature updates

  • PowerBI, OneDrive, Photos are now preloaded apps on the Surface Hub
  • Flash support for Edge
  • Skype for Business improvements, including support of Video Based Screen Sharing (VBSS) for improved content sharing, meeting call reliability improvements, video and gallery interface improvements and bugs fixes and meeting join performance improvements
  • User Interface (UI) and Experience (UX) optimization to have the most common Surface Hub settings in one place
  • Additional support for IT-based management and deployment via Intune
    • Added support in Imaging and Configuration Designer (ICD) for the Surface Hub Configuration Service Providers (CSPs). This allows customers to configure several Surface Hub settings using provisioning packages after Out-Of-Box-Experience (OOBE)
    • Improved Surface Hub Log Analytics solution on Operations Management Suite (OMS), giving a clearer view of issues to monitor and recommended remediation
    • Enhanced documentation about support for Windows Update for Business, allowing admins to control and stage Windows updates
  • Support for replicating High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) protected video content onto external monitors

For a comprehensive list of features and fixes included in the update, please check out the Surface Hub update history page.

We are grateful to our customer and partner community for their input and partnership as we make Surface Hub an unparalleled collaboration experience. If you are interested in purchasing Surface Hub for your business and for more details about Surface Hub and our partner reseller channel, please visit this link.