Tag Archives: Windows Ink

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.

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.

See What’s New with Windows Ink in the Windows 10 Creators Update

Windows Ink is about transforming the way we think about computers, from a tool that is great at getting things done, to one that harnesses your personality and your emotions into the things you create. It’s about bringing back the human aspects that a mouse and keyboard (and even touch) cannot express fully, it’s about making personal computers more personal, and an extension of yourself, not just a tool. We want you to feel empowered to create from the moment you pick up the pen, and have the confidence that Windows understands you, knows what you want to do – by understanding your handwriting, your words and your expression. This is the journey we’re on.

With the Creators Update, Windows Ink is now better than ever! When used with the Surface Dial, it allows you to discover new ways to work and interact with Windows. With Windows Ink, we continue to make it possible for you to do more than with pen and paper. Applications like Photos and Maps have added incredible inking functionality in the last year, and continue to evolve and expand. With Paint 3D in the Creators Update, Windows Ink can now create 3D objects! As we evolve what Ink means to users, we’re also introducing new Smart Ink capabilities to Windows Ink. These capabilities allows developers to understand the ink that is being laid down by the user, using AI to help create, connect and complete user actions on ink. We’ve also improved and added features to the building blocks for Windows Ink, introducing new stencils and adding tilt support to create a richer drawing experience.

Devices that support the Pen on Windows have also doubled in the last year, and is on track to double again in the next year! We’re seeing high demand not just for devices, but also for applications that support ink. To make it easier to find compatible pens, Wacom has partnered with us to develop the Bamboo Ink Pen. This pen will be in market in summer and supports almost all Windows PCs that are pen-capable. It features the Microsoft Pen Protocol (MPP), which is based on Surface Pen technology. In addition, we are also excited that the Surface Dial is now available in more countries, like Australia, Canada and New Zealand, giving more people an opportunity to try this incredible new input device. In addition, new hardware from our OEM partners, like the Dell Canvas 27, are shipping soon and takes advantage of the same RadialController APIs that are used for the dial. As a developer building for the Surface Dial today, it means that you are ready for all the new hardware that our OEM partners will bring to the ecosystem.

The progress we’ve made with Windows Ink would not have been possible without the feedback and passion you developers bring to us. With over a thousand inking applications in the store and growing everyday, with well over half of the top 10 paid store apps being ink apps, there is incredible enthusiasm and interest in this space. This is an incredible opportunity that you have embraced with us, and it inspires us to do more in each Windows release.

What’s new with Windows Ink platform?

Ink is the ultimate way humans can express themselves, it opens up new opportunities for application developers to differentiate, and helps make their applications stand out. From the latest fads like adult coloring books to simple games like tic-tac-toe, to applications that help you organize your life, there is just so much opportunity to build the next big thing in the inking space. We also know that people who use Windows Ink are more satisfied with their experience, what they look for, and buy more inking applications. From the platform perspective, we have 2 ways that we help developers:

  • Make it as easy and quick for a developer to add inking into their application by providing controls that can be dropped in quickly into any application and get Windows Ink support.
  • Provide the most flexible platform building blocks for developers to innovate upon. This gives you the flexibility to choose where to start developing for Windows Ink.

Introducing Smart Ink

Let’s start with a new building block that developers have access to in the Creators Update. Introducing Ink Analysis, this is the first of our family of Smart Ink capabilities that we are bringing to the platform. Smart Ink brings AI technology to not just understand what you write, but also helps connect the dots to what you may want to do. With Ink Analysis, it starts simple, with recognizing shapes and making that square you drew more perfect, but it can also do much more, like understanding you wrote words in squares and making it into an org chart using understanding about your organization. Our goal is to understand user intent and empower developers to turn it into rich digital constructs, as well as to leverage understanding from all parts of the system. Ink Analysis allows any developer to understand the ink they capture, whether it is handwriting, shapes, phone numbers, stock symbols, lists, document structure and more.  This is the same technology we debuted in Sticky Notes in the Window 10 Anniversary Update, and now it’s available for you to use! We can’t wait to see what you can do with this technology.

Here is an example of how to use Ink Analysis to recognize shapes.  For this snippet, we’ll use DirectInk to handle rendering the ink strokes.  Start by initializing an InkAnalyzer and connecting it with InkPresenter:

private void Initialize()
    inkAnalyzer = new InkAnalyzer();
    inkCanvas.InkPresenter.StrokesCollected += InkPresenter_StrokesCollected;
    inkCanvas.InkPresenter.StrokesErased += InkPresenter_StrokesErased;

// Whenever the user draws a new stroke, you copy the stroke into Ink Analyzer’s stroke collection
private void InkPresenter_StrokesCollected(InkPresenter sender, InkStrokesCollectedEventArgs args)

// When a stroke is erased in InkCanvas, remove the same stroke from Ink Analyzer's collection.
private void InkPresenter_StrokesErased(InkPresenter sender, InkStrokesErasedEventArgs args)
    foreach (var stroke in args.Strokes)

Next you want to feed strokes to the analyzer. Commonly this is done via explicit user action (e.g. the user clicks a button) or after the user has been idle for a while.


The result is a tree representation of the whole document with different kinds of nodes, such as paragraph, line, list, word, and drawing. If for instance you want to find all the shapes in the ink, you can with the code below:

IReadOnlyList&amp;lt;IInkAnalysisNode&amp;gt; drawings = inkAnalyzer.AnalysisRoot.FindNodes(InkAnalysisNodeKind.InkDrawing);
foreach (IInkAnalysisNode drawing in drawings)
    var shape = (InkAnalysisInkDrawing)drawing;
    switch (shape.DrawingKind)
        case InkAnalysisDrawingKind.Circle:
            // The user drew a circle. You can replace it with a perfect circle that goes through shape.Points.
        case InkAnalysisDrawingKind.Rectangle:
            // The user drew a rectangle. 
            // You can find the full list of supported shapes here.

If you want to learn more about Ink Analysis, you can watch the BUILD 2017 recorded video Enable Natural Pen Interaction by Using Ink Analysis to Better Understand Users’ Ink, download the Ink Analysis sample on GitHub or check out the Ink Analysis API Reference.

An improved Ink Toolbar

In the Anniversary Update we created a customizable set of inking tools, Ink Toolbar and Ink Canvas, that any developer can add to their own application with only two lines of markup.

&amp;lt;InkCanvas x:Name=“myInkCanvas”/&amp;gt;
&amp;lt;InkToolbar TargetInkCanvas=“{x:Bind myInkCanvas}”/&amp;gt;

Many of Microsoft’s first party applications have incorporated the inking tools to create engaging user experiences. For example, Photos added a calligraphy pen and the ability to draw on any photo in the gallery. Maps added a feature that lets you measure the distance of a route drawn on the map. Edge browser added inking on webpages. It has never been easier to add Windows Ink to your applications.

In the Creators Update, we continue our commitment to improving these controls! If you already use them in your applications, these improvements will benefit you with no additional work!

In response to users, the Creators Update introduces a new stencil, the protractor. This new stencil makes it easy for you to draw circles and arcs of any size. When drawing an arc, the protractor displays a readout that tells you the precise angle of the arc. You can also resize the stencil with just a pinch/zoom gesture with your fingers.

We’ve also made the ruler stencil better! Like the protractor, it now provides an angle readout that shows the ruler’s angle with the horizontal line. The ruler also snaps to 0, 45 and 90 degrees for easy access to the most common angles being used by our users.

You asked for an improve stroke preview in the Ink Toolbar, and in the Creators Update, we have it! We’re also make changes in the Ink Toolbar to work better with High Contrast themes, by automatically showing only colors that meet visibility requirements for the current user profile.

New Exciting Inking Capabilities

Today we announced the new Surface Pro and the new Surface Pen. Together they enable the next generation of inking capabilities that truly make writing digitally as natural as pen on paper. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Low latency Ink that virtually eliminates lag when you write
  • Tilt support to capture an additional dimension in digital inking
  • Ink that captures the entire spectrum of your expression with 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity
  • Effortless inking with half the activation force required to being inking

Our customers have asked us for these capabilities, and they are finally here! From a developer perspective, if you already use the Windows Ink platform, all these capabilities show up in your application automatically! There are no changes required, and you are ready for the new Surface Pro, with the new Surface Pen.

Low latency Inking is a unique addition to Windows Ink. It is the result of a close partnership between hardware and software. The Pixelsense Accelerator chip in the new Surface Pro, is the first device to run Windows Ink acceleration code natively on hardware. This is how we achieve a new milestone in inking, virtually eliminating lag between the pen tip and the ink that flows out of it, creating the most natural writing experience with Windows Ink.

Tilt is another great addition to the Inking experience. The great news is, in addition to the new Surface Pro/Pen supporting this new capability, Wacom Pens that feature tilt will also “just work”! Tilt allows Windows Ink to model natural pencil sketching that response to the tilt of the pen. This support is now built into the pencil brush on the Ink Toolbar. In the above diagrams, we demonstrate how the pencil brush can be used to shade lines (on the left) and to draw arcs of varying thickness depending on the degree of tilt (on the right).

As mentioned above, tilt integration happens automatically if you use the Ink Toolbar. However, if you are not using the Windows Ink platform to render ink, and want to build your own brush that responds to tilt, you still can! There are two properties, TiltX and TiltY (respective angle of tilt against each axis of the screen plane) which are included with pointer input messages. You can access the tilt values from the PointerPointProperties included with Pointer input events, or the POINTER_PEN_INFO struct from WM_POINTER input.

These improvements automatically show up on any application that uses the Windows Ink controls, and you can be confident that we’ll continue to evolve and improve them in each release of Windows.

What’s new with Surface Dial and RadialController?

The Surface Dial introduces a new input paradigm to computing. It was designed alongside the Windows Ink experience, allowing it to truly shine when used together with a Pen. We’ve seen many experiences built to harness the new capabilities the Surface Dial brings, and are also seeing new hardware emerging, and adopting the RadialController standard. In response to your feedback, we’ve added more capabilities to the RadialController experience in the Creators Update.

First off, are some new button events for RadialControllers. These new events, Pressed and Released, combined with existing events for rotation and screen contact, will allow you to track complex interactions such as press-and-rotate or press-and-move. The example below illustrates a simple way to capture a press-and-rotate action.

_radialController.ButtonPressed += OnButtonPressed;
_radialController.ButtonReleased += OnButtonReleased;

private void OnRotationChanged(RadialController sender,
                               RadialControllerRotationChangedEventArgs args)
    if (args.IsButtonPressed)
        /* When button is pressed, you can do modal interactions, fine-grained changes */
        /* Otherwise, do the normal rotation behavior */
private void SendHaptics(SimpleHapticsController hapticController)
    var feedbacks = hapticController.SupportedFeedback;
    foreach (SimpleHapticsControllerFeedback feedback in feedbacks)
        if (feedback.Waveform ==

You also now have access to the Haptics engine in the Surface Dial hardware. Using SimpleHapticsController—a new object that uses the HID Simple Haptics specification—you have the power to directly send feedback to the user. You can use this to customize the feel of your menu, adding a new dimension to the experience. This object is available in the arguments of all radial controller input events.

In cases where you may want to suppress the radial menu to prevent it from blocking UI, we now have new properties ActiveControllerWhenMenuIsSuppressed and IsMenuSuppressed to let you configure when the menu is available or suppressed. When a menu is suppressed, it will not appear on press-and-hold interactions for the foreground app. Your app can listen to a new event during menu suppression to give the user an indication the menu is blocked, or build an alternate experience. Here is a code sample for this functionality:

RadialControllerConfiguration config = RadialControllerConfiguration.GetForCurrentView();
config.ActiveControllerWhenMenuIsSuppressed = myController;
config.IsMenuSuppressed = true;
myController.ButtonHolding += MyController_ButtonHolding;

User input running on a UI thread can sometimes lead to performance bottlenecks. With the Creator’s Update, radial controller interactions can now be handled on an off-UI thread using RadialControllerIndependentInputSource. Below is an example on how to get additional performance using this method.

RadialController controller;
Windows.UI.Input.Core.RadialControllerIndependentInputSource independentInput;
CoreApplicationView view;
view = CoreApplication.GetCurrentView();

var workItemHandler = new WorkItemHandler((IAsyncAction) =&amp;gt;
    independentInput = Windows.UI.Input.Core.RadialControllerIndependentInputSource.CreateForView(view);

    controller = independentInput.Controller;

    controller.RotationResolutionInDegrees = 5;

    controller.RotationChanged += Controller_RotationChanged;
    controller.ScreenContactStarted += Controller_ScreenContactStarted;
    controller.ScreenContactContinued += Controller_ScreenContactContinued;
    controller.ScreenContactEnded += Controller_ScreenContactEnded;
    controller.ControlLost += Controller_ControlLost;
    controller.ButtonClicked += Controller_ButtonClicked;
    controller.ButtonPressed += Controller_ButtonPressed;
    controller.ButtonReleased += Controller_ButtonReleased;
    controller.ButtonHolding += Controller_ButtonHolding;
    controller.ControlAcquired += Controller_ControlAcquired;

    // Begin processing input messages as they're delivered.      
action = ThreadPool.RunAsync(workItemHandler, WorkItemPriority.High, WorkItemOptions.TimeSliced);

In addition to all the API additions above, you can now customize and easily add new menu items on the Radial Menu. Under “Wheel Settings” in the settings app, you can add application specific menu items that trigger keyboard combinations. Imagine customizing the controller to send your favorite shortcuts in Visual Studio, Photoshop or even when browsing the web!

The Surface Dial continues to excite users and developers alike, with these new enhancements, both developers and users have more control and flexibility in their experience. We invite you to join the numerous applications that have already delivered a great Surface Dial experience, like CorelDRAW, Autodesk’s SketchBook, Silicon Bender’s Sketchable and Algoriddim’s djay Pro. We can’t wait to see what you can do with this unique new form of input on Windows.

Join us in making Windows Ink better!

With Windows Ink and the Surface Dial additions in the Creators Update, we believe we’re just scratching the surface of what Windows Ink can do in people’s lives. Our commitment is to invest in areas that can help you innovate and remove all the barriers to our users using, loving and needing Windows Ink. This involves a spectrum of efforts, from the hardware we build by ourselves and with our partners, to the next SDK additions we make to power you app. As we continue this journey, we invite you to lend us your voice, your ideas and your feedback. Help us help you make the next great application and help us help you change the world. Tweet your ideas using #WindowsInk, email us at WindowsInk@Microsoft.com or tweet us at @WindowsInk. We would love to hear from all of you.

Thank you!

Windows 10 partner devices bring Windows 10 Creators Update experiences to life

The Windows 10 Creators Update will begin to roll out to customers around the world on April 11, and will bring exciting new features and security enhancements to the devices already running Windows 10. Over the last several months, we’ve worked closely with our device partners to ensure customers will enjoy great Windows 10 Creators Update experiences on the devices they’re using today. They’re excited, and so are we! These OEMs are building innovative new devices designed to light up the new creativity and gaming experiences enabled by the Creators update.

Dell Canvas

Dell Canvas

You can read about the exciting new features in the Windows 10 Creators Update including the all new Paint 3D app and Remix3D.com community, gaming innovations, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Defender Security Center and more in Yusuf Mehdi’s blog post. All these features combined with additional security capabilities and privacy tools, really come to life on the amazing devices our partners have created. This includes Dell Canvas, ASUS Zenbook Flip, HP Spectre x360, and many others partners will make available in coming months.

The Dell Canvas, for example, is a smart workspace technology that channels the innovative possibilities of Windows 10 Creators Update. This vestal 27-inch QHD smart workspace lets content creators and designers create, communicate and express ideas naturally with touch, digital pen, and totems or dials. The Dell Canvas allows you to turn drawings into part of the digital workflow with Windows Ink or by marking up web pages in Microsoft Edge.

3D for Everyone in Windows 10

With Paint 3D, you can easily change color and texture or turn 2D images into 3D works of art. Remix3D.com offers pre-made 3D art in a growing online library and provides a space where you can capture, create and share in 3D. 3D in Windows 10 really shines in the powerful HP Spectre x360. This slim device is light, fully-convertible, and boasts 14-hour battery life. It includes Windows Hello and HP Fast Charge to power the device up to 90 percent in just 90 minutes.

HP Spectre

HP Spectre

Another great device harnessing the power of 3D for Everyone is the ASUS ZenBook Flip UX360UA, an ultra-thin (less than ½ inch thin and 2.64 lbs.) 2-in-1, featuring a beautiful aluminum shell and premium feel. It is fully-convertible with a FHD or QHD+ display, 12-hour battery, and optional Windows Hello fingerprint reader.

ASUS ZenBook Flip UX360UA

ASUS ZenBook Flip UX360UA

The Lenovo Miix 720 2-in-1 detachable is best paired with the Lenovo Active Pen 2 that works with Windows Ink, an integrated infrared camera that unlocks Windows Hello facial recognition, an ultra-crisp 12-inch QHD+ display for superior screen resolution, and a precision touchpad-enabled keyboard that makes for an awesome input experience really brings 3D for Everyone to life.

Lenovo Miix 720 2-in-1 detachable detached running Microsoft PowerPoint

Lenovo Miix 720 2-in-1 detachable

Game Mode and Beam offer more for Windows 10 PC gamers

Windows 10 Game Mode aims to offer the best and most consistent gaming experience on your Windows 10 PC by dedicating more system resources to your PC games. Microsoft’s newly acquired, ‘sub-second latency’ streaming solution, Beam, also invites Creators on Windows 10 PCs to stream gameplay and interact with the community in near real-time using Beam’s ultra low-latency –  no extra hardware or software required.

ASUS ROG Strix GL502 running Windows 10 with the Start menu open

ASUS ROG Strix GL502

The ASUS ROG Strix GL502 and the Dell Alienware 15 R3 provide great options for PC gamers to try Beam and Game Mode in the Windows 10 Creators Update. They both feature the VR-ready NVIDIA GeForce GTX 10 series and have 15.6-inch Full HD display graphics offering amazing visuals.

Dell Alienware 15 R3

Dell Alienware 15 R3

Windows Ink

Windows Ink is a lot more fun and productive in the Creators Update. You’ll now be able to do things like draw or write directly on maps, photos and videos using the built-in Maps and Photos apps. Create 3D objects from scratch with Paint 3D. Even write or draw directly on a Microsoft Edge web page and mark up digital documents in Microsoft Word.

Acer, HP, Lenovo, and Toshiba, all offer unique Windows Ink experiences on their new devices. The Acer Spin 7 convertible has a 13-inch all-aluminum unibody that houses a 14-inch FHD IPS Corning Gorilla Glass touchscreen display with a narrow bezel, perfect for drawing with Windows Ink or marking up web pages in Microsoft Edge. The HP EliteBook x360 has a powerful thin and light design has up to 16 hours and 30 minutes of battery life, is optimized for Windows Ink and offers a full-size Wacom pen and digitizer. The Lenovo Yoga Book 2-in-1 includes a Wacom dual-use stylus that writes on paper and screen, and real ink tips so one can write on pieces of paper that cover the multi-use keyboard panel. Everything from doodles and drawings to notes is then instantly digitized and saved on Microsoft OneNote. The Toshiba Portege X20W includes TruPen using Wacom Feel technology, which can detect 2,048 levels of pressure, perfect for taking notes, drawing on web pages in Microsoft Edge and using Windows Ink.

OEMs and ODMs will help us bring the Windows 10 Creators Update to consumers and businesses around the world, and we are thrilled by our partners’ ongoing commitment to Windows. We’ll continue to showcase their work on innovative devices that light up Windows 10 experiences. We look forward to seeing even more new devices soon.

Complete Anatomy: Award-Winning App Comes to Windows Store

3D4Medical has just completed the port of its award-winning flagship product Complete Anatomy to Windows Store using the Windows Bridge for iOS. The Windows Bridge is an open-source environment for Objective-C that provides support for third party APIs. The Windows Bridge was a very important component in 3D4Medical’s development team, bringing the high-resolution 3D models and smooth touch interface that its users were already familiar with to the world of Windows PC and Surface users.

3D4Medical created a Universal Windows Platform (UWP) app in response to the huge demand from its core audience of medical students and clinical professionals, many of whom use Windows devices. The app supports multiple Windows form-factors and device configurations. The interface can be manipulated with either a mouse or touch gestures. The experience particularly shines on Surfaces and other pen capable devices, where you can take advantage of Windows Ink support for smooth drawing and annotation.

Smooth interactions

As you can see in the example below, the UWP version of Complete Anatomy provides a rich user experience with smooth transitions and an elegant menu system that provides access to updatable quizzes and anatomy tutorials that are shared across iOS and Windows devices. With your finger, a Windows Pen or a mouse, you can quickly rotate skeletons to view points of interest from multiple perspectives. The high-definition models also scale smoothly as you zoom and pan over points of articulation and various anatomical systems.

Muscular, arterial, lymphatic, nervous, respiratory and digestive systems can be toggled on and off, annotated, labeled, drawn on and even saved for later reference. The app currently leverages Windows Ink for convenient pen interactions.

Wrapping Up

In porting Complete Anatomy to the Windows Store, 3D4Medical demonstrates that the Windows Bridge can help developers bring feature-rich, award-winning design to PCs and Surfaces in a short time span. This app shines on all Surface devices, whether it’s the Surface Pro line, the Surface Book or even an 84″ Surface Hub. Complete Anatomy brings over not only all the high-fidelity models and natural interactions already developed, but also extends the product with Windows capabilities like Windows Ink.

To learn more about cross-platform development, please refer to the documentation and articles linked below:

Mobile World Congress 2017: Panasonic releases the Toughbook CF-33 2-in-1 


This larger 12” display design with 3:2 aspect ratio brings unrivalled flexibility and performance for the mobile worker. This device comes with a choice of two models: as a 2-in-1 detachable laptop (tablet with keyboard dock) or as a tablet only. Powered by Windows 10, this device comes with Tablet Mode: a touch-first experience that allows apps to scale smoothly, and onscreen features to adapt for easy navigation. With six different operating modes, the Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 provides the best features of a laptop and tablet for business applications. It weighs just 2.761kg in laptop mode – with the detachable tablet weighing 1.527kg.

With Windows 10, Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 comes with your digital personal assistant, Cortana*, who can help you find things, complete tasks, set reminders and work more productively. It also has comprehensive protection – including anti-virus, firewall, Windows Defender and anti-phishing technologies – all delivered built-in at no extra cost to you.

Designed for outdoor use in bright sunlight or heavy rain, the Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 has a 12″ 10-finger capacitive Dual touch QHD screen (2160 x 1440 pixels). Suitable for workers who need to operate touchscreens with gloves, the device uses the latest display technology providing a new level of viewing quality for tablet users working outside with its 1200cd/m² brightness. The device also includes a IP55 digitizer pen designed to work with Windows Ink for workers who need the highest levels of writing, drawing and signature accuracy in the toughest of weather conditions.

Other features include:

  • Powered by Windows 10 and up to a 7th generation Intel Core processor
  • A 2MP webcam with stereo microphones and 8MP documentation rear camera that allows you to login quickly and easily with Windows Hello
  • A 4G LTE option, and the option for the latest U-Blox NEO-M8 GPS for precise navigation
  • USB 3.0, HDMI, LAN, micro SD-XC and headset ports
  • Twin hot swappable batteries provide you with the ability to extend the battery life and the choice to change the battery while in use
  • The sleek Desktop Port Replicator allows the Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 2-in-1 detachable laptop to be used as a high-performance desktop device. The four-bay battery charger is ideal for large organizations where the ability to charge multiple batteries can reduce work downtime

US pricing and availability: The Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 will be available in May 2017 from authorized Panasonic resellers starting around $4,099 for tablet with keyboard and $3,499 for the tablet-only. Specifications of the US model will be released this May. In the meantime, for additional information, please visit us.panasonic.com/toughbook/33.

Europe pricing and availability: The Panasonic Toughbook CF-33 comes with a standard 3-year warranty and will be available in 2nd Quarter of 2017. The Toughbook CF-33 2-in-1 detachable laptop model will be priced at € 3552 / £ 2627 + vat, and the Toughbook CF-33 Tablet only model will be priced at € 2992 / £ 2213 + vat.

It’s great to see Panasonic’s latest addition to the Toughbook family with their new 2-in-1 laptop powered by Windows 10 that’s built with mobile professionals in mind. This is a device that certainly offers flexibility and performance in one.

*Cortana available in select markets. 

CES 2017: Lenovo updates the ThinkPad X1 family and introduces new gaming PCs

Each of these new devices was thoughtfully designed to meet your needs and habits, whether at home, in the office or on-the-go. These devices also take advantage of great Windows 10 features, including Windows Hello with built-in face recognition cameras and fingerprint readers, and touch screens that light up Windows Ink. Also, built into these new devices are noise-cancelling microphones to support Cortana*, your personal digital assistant.

Here’s a closer look at what Lenovo announced today:

A premium PC experience with the ThinkPad X1 family

ThinkPad X1 Carbon

The 2017 ThinkPad X1 Carbon, available in classic ThinkPad Black and a new Silver color.

The 2017 Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon available in a new Silver color

The next generation of ThinkPad X1 products are committed to uncompromised innovation. The 2017 ThinkPad X1 Carbon, available in classic ThinkPad Black and a new Silver color, offers more than 15 hours of battery life, weighs just 2.5 pounds and packs a 14-inch high quality IPS display into a new sleek 13-inch form factor.

You can login easily and securely with Windows Hello using either the fingerprint sensor or the new face recognition Infrared camera on the new Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon.

You can login easily and securely with Windows Hello using either the fingerprint sensor or the new face recognition Infrared camera.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon has been redesigned to include Thunderbolt 3 ports, which allows for super-fast and slim port connection that lets you transfer data quickly.

Now offering more than 15 hours of battery life, the X1 Carbon has been redesigned to include Thunderbolt 3 ports, which allows for super-fast and slim port connection that lets you transfer data quickly, super-fast LTE-A Wireless WAN and WIFI CERTIFIED WiGig options that deliver superlative performance and connectivity.

ThinkPad X1 Yoga and the ThinkPad X1 Tablet

Also, available in the new Silver color, the updated ThinkPad X1 Yoga is flawlessly flexible and adapts to your needs offering true multi-mode capability and can deliver stunning colors and absolute blacks in its 14-inch notebook size with an OLED screen. If you’re not familiar with OLED, an OLED screen is one of those things you must see to believe, it’s higher resolution than 4K.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Yoga

A redesigned rechargeable pen and improved ‘rise and fall” keyboard complete the improved experience.

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet

Alongside the ThinkPad X1 Yoga is the ThinkPad X1 Tablet, continuing to impress with its lightweight, modularity and serviceability.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet features an integrated projector option making it easier to go from creation to presentation.

The Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet features an integrated projector option making it easier to go from creation to presentation.

The ThinkPad X1 Tablet has unique modules that offer port expansion and up to 5 hours of additional battery life, and an integrated projector option making it easier to go from creation to presentation. It also comes with new Intel Core processors for better performance and graphics than ever.

Pricing and availability

The ThinkPad X1 Carbon starts at $1,349, and will be available beginning in February 2017. The ThinkPad X1 Yoga starts at $1,499, and will be available beginning in February 2017. The ThinkPad X1 Tablet starts at $949, and will be available beginning in March 2017. All available in the US.

Work-life integration with the Miix 720

The ultra-chic Miix 720 detachable includes the features needed to work smarter. You can simply remove the keyboard to instantly transform the Miix 720 into a feature-rich touchscreen tablet. Paired with a Lenovo Active Pen 2 and Windows Ink, the Miix 720 is ideal for effortless note taking with OneNote or Microsoft Edge.

The Lenovo Miix 720 Detachable with Lenovo Active Pen 2

Lenovo Miix 720

The integrated infrared camera unlocks Windows Hello facial recognition which allows you to login without the hassle of having to recall or re-type your password, and the up to 150-degree tablet kickstand easily adjusts to any angle.

Other features include:

  • An ultra-crisp 12-inch QHD+ display for super crisp screen resolution and precision high end touchpad-enabled keyboard that makes for an awesome input experience
  • Up to 7th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and Thunderbolt 3, the fastest port available on a PC today

Pricing and availability

The Miix 720 (keyboard included) starts at $999.99, available in two color options Champagne Gold and Iron Gray beginning in April 2017. The Lenovo Active Pen 2 starts at $59.99, and will be available beginning in February 2017. All available in the US.

Two new powerful gaming laptops designed for PC gamers: the Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop and Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop with Windows 10

This year, Lenovo is launching a dedicated sub-brand for Lenovo gaming PCs – called Lenovo Legion. The new gaming sub-brand offers gamers powerful gaming devices and community engagement. In their quest to provide gamers the most immersive PC gaming experiences, Lenovo spent time building and listening to a community of gamers to better understand what they value most.

Lenovo’s first new Legion offerings come in the form of two powerful gaming laptops designed for PC gamers: the Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop and Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop, powered by Windows 10. Lenovo Legion laptops are outfitted with up to the latest NVIDIA graphics cards and Intel’s latest 7th Gen Core i7 processors for the speed needed to win. More RAM also means better gameplay, and boosting up RAM specs delivers that extra edge as the second most desired upgrade based on gamers’ feedback. Gamers can run and stream their favorite game, respond to chat questions and play music all at the same time without a hitch – powered by the two laptops’ 16 GB DDR4 memory. With Windows 10, both of these new laptops are equipped with the Xbox app and can take advantage of Xbox Play Anywhere. You can read more about the Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop and Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop over on Lenovo’s blog.

The Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop also features:

The Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop

The Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop

  • Lenovos’ first laptop with integrated Xbox Wireless Controller Receiver built-in
The Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop

The Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop

  • VR-ready with up to NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB DDR5 graphics
  • World’s first Windows based Dolby Atmos PC1 with two 2W JBL speakers and a 3W subwoofer for incredible sound
  • Thunderbolt 3, the fastest port available on a PC today to plug and play at lightening speeds and the option of an integrated Xbox One Wireless controller, which is able to support up to four controllers simultaneously for gaming with friends.
  • High-quality screen resolution with up to UHD (3840 x 2160) IPS anti-glare display
  • An optional RGB keyboard for more precise gaming in the dark

The Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop also features:

The Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop

  • 6-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) display for an amazing visual experience
  • Immersive Dolby Audio Premium sound with two 2W Harmon Kardon speakers
  • Optional red backlit keyboard for gaming in the dark

Pricing and availability

The Lenovo Legion Y720 Laptop starts at $1,399.99, and will be available beginning in April 2017. The Lenovo Legion Y520 Laptop starts at $899.99, and will be available beginning in February 2017. All available in the US.

Taking Control with the Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller

Want to browse the web from your couch? Or turn on your favorite playlist from the dining table? The Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller is not only wireless a mouse and keyboard in one, it’s also a remote control that fits in the palm of your hand and dramatically improves the way you connect to your PCs, the web and displays. The keyboard area doubles as a Windows 10 gesture-supported, multi-touch capacitive touchpad – simply press it to type, or slide your fingers to navigate. The entire keypad surface is your touchpad, and its lightweight design won’t weigh you down. Lean back on the couch and browse the web, stream movies and more.

Pricing and availability

The Lenovo 500 Multimedia Controller starts at $54.99, and will be available beginning in March 2017.

It’s great to see partners like Lenovo pushing the boundaries of what’s possible and creating beautiful hardware that lights up Windows 10. You can learn more about Lenovo’s news at lenovo.com/ces.

*Cortana available in select markets.
1Based on Lenovo’s internal analysis as of Dec 9, 2016 of PCs using Windows sold by major competitors shipping >1 million units worldwide annually. Requires the Windows 10 Creators Update. 

A New Input Paradigm in Windows – The Surface Dial

With the debut of Windows Ink in the Windows Anniversary Update, we introduced simultaneous pen and touch as the dawn of a revolutionary change in interacting with Windows. In our blog post, we discuss how you can use the APIs that you are already familiar with for touch to handle both touch and pen processing at the same time. Now with the recent Microsoft hardware announcements, we’re happy to share another innovation in input with you – the Surface Dial.


The Surface Dial introduces a new paradigm for input in Windows. The Surface Dial is a new category of input device, which we refer to as a radial controller, and is a revolutionary new tool for the creative process. With tools and shortcuts at your fingertips, the Surface Dial allows you to remain focused on what matters most. You can manipulate images, adjust volume, change color hues and much more, all with simple gestures. With the Surface Dial in one hand and Surface Pen in the other, the creative process is made more productive and more enjoyable. Additionally, you can place your Surface Dial directly on the screen of the Surface Studio and have favorite tools – like a color picker or ruler – at hand and easily accessible on your digital drafting table.

When paired over Bluetooth with a Windows 10 Anniversary Update PC, the Surface Dial delivers a breadth of new experiences to users and opens a world of possibilities. The goal of this blog is to walk you through how you can build your own experiences on the Surface Dial in your application.

Introducing the Radial Controller

For Windows, the Surface Dial represents a totally new type of input device in the system, which we refer to as a radial controller. To go along with this brand-new type of input, Windows has delivered an integrated experience that makes it easier and faster for users to customize and do the things they love – all with a turn of the Dial.

The Surface Dial has a simple set of gestures: It can be rotated, it can be pressed like a button and it can be placed on the screen of the Surface Studio. These gestures are instantly familiar to users and easy to learn. When you press and hold the Surface Dial, a menu experience shows up that presents a selection of tools that can be controlled. These tools offer a variety of functions designed to improve the user’s workflow and keep them immersed in their creativity – from scrolling and zooming, changing volume and controlling media playback, undo and redo, custom keyboard shortcuts and more. It also integrates further with a broad and growing set of in-box and 3rd party apps, unlocking new tools when used with the Windows Ink Workspace, Office, Maps, Groove Music, Sketchable, Bluebeam Revu, Moho 12, Drawboard PDF and more. With the Surface Dial, unlocking new functions for users across every Windows app, they’ll be excited to explore how the Dial can help them in their favorite apps. With the extensibility available through the Windows universal platform, it’s easy for your app to bring that delightful Surface Dial experience they’re searching for!

The first and simplest way to add value with Surface Dial is to use Windows inbox components that come with the Surface Dial integration built-in. For developers who leverage the Windows Ink platform to give their users the power to write, draw, and create with their pen, the InkCanvas and InkToolbar XAML controls populate the Surface Dial’s menu with new tools, allowing users to quickly modify the attributes of their ink, change the thickness of their ink as they write and control the on-screen ruler. This gives you the same great Surface Dial integration available in the Sketchpad and Screen Sketch apps in the Windows Ink Workspace.


When the InkToolbar and InkCanvas are used, Surface Dial integration is automatically included!


When the on-screen ruler is visible, the Surface Dial can control its angle and position.

For media players, integrating with the SystemMediaTransportControls will give the same ability to pause, play and skip tracks with the Dial as Groove Music and Spotify.

For developers who want to go beyond the default integration built into the system and create something truly unique, Windows makes it easy for you to add your own tools to this menu through the RadialController platform. The RadialController universal APIs allow you to build your own custom tools for the Surface Dial’s menu and handle Dial input from both Universal Windows Platform apps and classic Win32 apps. You have the option to respond to the button and rotation input available on all Windows devices, or go one step further and build immersive UI experiences for when the Surface Dial is used on-screen on the Surface Studio.

Let’s start by looking at what it takes to build a custom tool experience for the Surface Dial!

Building a Custom Tool for the Surface Dial

Custom tools for the Surface Dial are the best way to deliver a deep and engaging Dial experience for your users. Since a custom tool is personal to your application’s needs, you can identify the shortcuts and functions that matter most to the user and put it right at the user’s fingertips. By optimizing the user’s workflow and integrating with the app’s UI, your custom tool can help the user stay engaged and feel more productive as they work, play, or create with Dial.

To start creating a custom tool for the Surface Dial, the first step is to create an instance of the RadialController interface used to represent the device and interact with the Surface Dial’s menu for the lifetime of your application. Through your instance of the RadialController, you can access the RadialControllerMenu, which gives you the ability to add and remove your own application-specific tools in the Surface Dial’s menu. The RadialController also gives you access to all the input events for the Surface Dial, allowing you to create compelling experiences for your custom tool.

Let’s take a look at building a custom tool inside a sample application. Here we’ll start with a simple inking application using the InkCanvas and InkToolbar controls, which already provide Surface Dial integration for modifying inking attributes and the ruler.

Now, let’s add deeper integration with the RadialController APIs and have the Surface Dial control the color of our background. We’ll start by adding a custom tool to the menu:


Since we used the InkToolbar, the menu comes pre-populated with inking tools!


You can see the new tool we added

The RadialController API provides simple events for handling the input coming from the Dial, from button click, to rotation to the on-screen position. In the previous snippet, we set event handlers for the RotationChanged and ButtonClicked input events from the Surface Dial. Using these events, we can have the input from the Dial modify the red, green, or blue values of our background:

Slider selectedItem = null;
FrameworkElement highlightedItem = null;
private void MyController_ButtonClicked(RadialController sender, RadialControllerButtonClickedEventArgs args)
if(highlightedItem == Preview)
//Click on the Preview, update the background
else if (selectedItem != null)
//Click on a selected slider, unselect the slider
selectedItem = null;
//decrease sensitivity to make it more comfortable to navigate between items
myController.RotationResolutionInDegrees = 10;
else if (selectedItem == null)
//No selection, select a slider
UpdateSelection(highlightedItem as Slider);
//increase sensitivity to make it easier to change slider value
myController.RotationResolutionInDegrees = 1;
private void MyController_RotationChanged(RadialController sender, RadialControllerRotationChangedEventArgs args)
if (selectedItem != null)
//Change the value on the slider
selectedItem.Value += args.RotationDeltaInDegrees;
else if(args.RotationDeltaInDegrees &amp;gt; 0)
//Rotation is to the right, change the highlighted item accordingly
if (highlightedItem == RValue)
else if (highlightedItem == GValue)
else if (highlightedItem == BValue)
else if (args.RotationDeltaInDegrees &amp;lt; 0)
//Rotation is to the left, change the highlighted item accordingly
if (highlightedItem == GValue)
else if (highlightedItem == BValue)
else if (highlightedItem == Preview)
private void UpdateHighlight(FrameworkElement element)
StackPanel parent;
//Remove highlight state from previous element
if (highlightedItem != null)
parent = highlightedItem.Parent as StackPanel;
parent.BorderThickness = new Thickness(0);
//Update highlight state for new element
highlightedItem = element;
parent = highlightedItem.Parent as StackPanel;
parent.BorderBrush = new SolidColorBrush(Windows.UI.Colors.Black);
parent.BorderThickness = new Thickness(2);
private void UpdateSelection(Slider element)
selectedItem = element;
//Update selection state for selected slider
StackPanel parent = element.Parent as StackPanel;
parent.BorderBrush = new SolidColorBrush(Windows.UI.Colors.Cyan);
parent.BorderThickness = new Thickness(4);
private void UpdatePreview()
Windows.UI.Color selectedColor = new Windows.UI.Color();
selectedColor.A = 255;
selectedColor.R = (byte) RValue.Value;
selectedColor.G = (byte) GValue.Value;
selectedColor.B = (byte) BValue.Value;
Preview.Background = new SolidColorBrush(selectedColor);
private void UpdateBackground()
CanvasGrid.Background = Preview.Background;

When our custom tool is selected, the tool UI becomes visible. Rotation navigates the menu, and clicking a color value allows you to change it.


When you’ve found a color that you like, clicking on the preview image will change the background color to the one you’ve customized.

In addition to configuring how rotation interacts with the application, the RadialController APIs also give the ability to modify how rotation is delivered to your app and felt by the user. You can use the RotationResolutionInDegrees property to configure how fine the sensitivity or resolution is, and the UseAutomaticHapticFeedback property to set whether haptic feedback is enabled or disabled. In the previous example, setting the rotation to be more sensitive when changing one of the RGB values made much it easier to manipulate the slider. When not specified, the default value for rotational sensitivity is 10 degrees.

Handling On-Screen Input for Surface Studio

As we called out above, there are 2 modes which a radial controller device can be used in: off-screen and on-screen. When the Surface Dial is placed on the screen of the Surface Studio, the RadialController API gets the location and the bounds of the contact so that you can build richer and more immersive experiences for the user.

Using the Surface Dial’s on-screen position, you can build beautiful UI which centers around the Dial and gives the user richer information about the interactions that they can drive with the Dial. This allows the user to just focus on the control and placement of their hands and not have to worry about other additional menus or controls. As an example of this, take a look at the rich color palette developed by the engineers at Sketchable, or the quick insert menu developed by StaffPad which allows users to quickly add common musical notation markups.


Going one step further, you also can get context for the intent of the user’s interaction from the on-screen position which can help make your custom tools more compelling. You can see this in the way the Surface Dial guides and drives the on-screen ruler in the Windows Ink Workspace’s Sketchpad, and the engineers at Bluebeam and Drawboard take this same approach with their respective Split Zoom and Ruler features.

Working from the previous example, let’s take advantage of the on-screen position to make it easier for the user to see the results of their color change manipulations, and draw the relevant UI near our Surface Dial’s on-screen position instead of in the corner of the display. Using the ScreenContact* events, we can determine where the Surface Dial is and update our UI accordingly:

bool isRightHanded;
public MainPage()
//Query the user’s handedness
Windows.UI.ViewManagement.UISettings settings = new Windows.UI.ViewManagement.UISettings();
isRightHanded = settings.HandPreference == Windows.UI.ViewManagement.HandPreference.RightHanded;
//Create handlers for when RadialController provides an on-screen position
myController.ScreenContactStarted += MyController_ScreenContactStarted;
myController.ScreenContactContinued += MyController_ScreenContactContinued;
myController.ScreenContactEnded += MyController_ScreenContactEnded;
private void MyController_ScreenContactStarted(RadialController sender, RadialControllerScreenContactStartedEventArgs args)
private void MyController_ScreenContactContinued(RadialController sender, RadialControllerScreenContactContinuedEventArgs args)
private void MyController_ScreenContactEnded(RadialController sender, object args)
private void UpdatePanelLocation(RadialControllerScreenContact contact)
//When an on-screen position is provided, apply a transform to the panel
TranslateTransform x = new TranslateTransform();
if (isRightHanded)
//Render to the right of the RadialController
x.X = contact.Position.X + contact.Bounds.Width / 2 + 50;
//Render to the left of the RadialController
x.X = contact.Position.X - contact.Bounds.Width / 2 - 50 - ToolPanel.Width;
x.Y = contact.Position.Y - 200;
ToolPanel.RenderTransform = x;
ToolPanel.HorizontalAlignment = HorizontalAlignment.Left;
private void ResetPanelLocation()
//When an on-screen position is not provided, clear the transform on the panel
ToolPanel.RenderTransform = null;
ToolPanel.HorizontalAlignment = HorizontalAlignment.Right;

When dealing with on-screen input, it’s also important to be aware of whether your application has focus for Surface Dial input. When your application is minimized, another application is moved into the foreground, or the Surface Dial’s menu is opened, your application will lose focus for input and you’ll need to make sure your on-screen UI responds accordingly. On the other hand, when your app is brought into the foreground and focus is restored Surface Dial may already be on the screen of the Surface Studio, and a ScreenContactStarted event won’t be provided. Here’s an example of how to handle focus changes with Surface Dial:

public MainPage()
//Create handlers for when RadialController focus changes
myController.ControlAcquired += MyController_ControlAcquired;
myController.ControlLost += MyController_ControlLost;
private void MyController_ControlAcquired(RadialController sender, RadialControllerControlAcquiredEventArgs args)
//Ensure tool panel is rendered at the correct location when focus is gained
if (args.Contact != null)
ToolPanel.Visibility = Visibility.Visible;
private void MyController_ControlLost(RadialController sender, object args)
//Hide tool panel when focus is lost
ToolPanel.Visibility = Visibility.Collapsed;

Start Creating with Surface Dial

Using what you’ve learned so far about the RadialController APIs, you can now integrate the Surface Dial into your application, handle input and configure the system menu to meet your needs. You can build a huge range of delightful features for your users, ranging from simple modification of values and properties, to driving complex onscreen UI for Surface Dial users on the Surface Studio.

For more information on UX design and best practices with Dial, please consult our Surface Dial development overview, and you can find the full source code used in this project on GitHub.

Surface Dial and the RadialController platform is a new area of investment for Microsoft, and one of the keys to improving the platform and making it more flexible and powerful is getting feedback from our great community of developers! If you have any questions or comments while developing for the Surface Dial, please feel free to send them via email to RadialController@microsoft.com.

HP announces ProBook x360 11 Education Edition powered by Windows 10

HP announces ProBook x360 11 Education Edition powered by Windows 10

As technology usage in the classroom increases, HP has approached the design and creation of this device with students and teachers in mind. In addition to great built-in features like a touchscreen that enables Windows Ink, this PC also comes with student-friendly features, including an optional active pen to make math, art, note-taking in OneNote or highlighting in Microsoft Edge easier than ever.

For teachers, great features are built into Windows 10 such as the “Take a Test” app, which includes simple yet secure features for modern test-taking. The app creates a browser-based, locked-down environment for more secure, online assessments, for tests that shouldn’t have copy/paste privileges, access to files or other distractions. It also includes the “Set up School PCs” app, so a teacher can set up devices in three easy steps, even with no dedicated IT support.

For students, this device has an optional “explorer mode” dual camera system which uses a 1080p HD camera embedded on the keyboard deck to let students take video in tablet mode while viewing what they’re recording in real-time. This “explorer mode” makes project-based learning and content creation simple and fun.

The device switches easily between four modes, and since students are constantly moving around with their computers, the ProBook x360 11 Education Edition is encased in hard, industrial rubber and its screens feature optional damage-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass. HP engineers put the computer through its rigorous HP Total Test Process, which involved dropping hundreds of computers from an elevation of 29.5 inches (about the same height as an average school desk). Together with Windows 10, this device is an awesome option for students and teachers.

The HP ProBook x360 11 Education Edition will be available worldwide on Dec. 16. Head over to HP’s blog post to learn more!

Kick off the holiday ‘to-do’ season with Windows 10 features and devices

Windows 10 can help you make the most of your holidays in ways like creating to-do lists with Cortana* and making holiday shopping a little easier with Cortana and Microsoft Edge. Together with the latest Windows 10 devices, you can make the most out of the holidays in style. The latest Windows 10 devices from our partners are thinner, lighter and more beautiful than ever, with long battery life to power through your holidays on-the-go. New, higher-resolution screens and small-bezel OLED displays offer vibrant color, and 2-in-1 PCs add the flexibility to work on a laptop, draw on a tablet with Windows Ink or flip to the perfect angle to watch holiday movies – all with the same device.

Budget-friendly devices

ASUS Transformer Mini T102 – This 10.1-inch detachable 2-in-1 PC with a smart-hinge kickstand provides up to 170 degrees of flexibility.

ASUS Transformer Mini T102 – This 10.1-inch detachable 2-in-1 PC with a smart-hinge kickstand provides up to 170 degrees of flexibility.

At 1.7 pounds, it’s loaded with powerful Windows 10 features, including Cortana and a built-in fingerprint reader for secured, password-free log in with Windows Hello. Plus, you can get creative with Windows Ink and Pen. This device starts at $299 USD.

HP Stream 13 – This sleek laptop gives you the speed and power to stay entertained and productive.

HP Stream 13 – This sleek laptop gives you the speed and power to stay entertained and productive.

With Office 365 Personal included, you can use Windows 10 to kick-start your holidays, stay on top of work and enjoy the DTS Studio Sound for an immersive surround experience. This device starts at $279 USD.

Premium Devices

Lenovo Yoga 910 – This ultra-slick, eye-catching convertible 2-in-1 weighs in at just over three pounds.

Lenovo Yoga 910 – This ultra-slick, eye-catching convertible 2-in-1 weighs in at just over three pounds.

At almost half an inch thin, it sports a 360-degree watchband hinge for use as a laptop, tablet or display, plus a nine-hour battery. The built-in fingerprint reader for secured, password-free log in with Windows Hello and touchscreen bring out the best in Windows 10. This device starts at $1,049 USD.

Dell XPS 13 – The stunning, virtually borderless InfinityEdge display is great for viewing pictures and videos with friends and family or online shopping with Microsoft Edge.

Dell XPS 13 – The stunning, virtually borderless InfinityEdge display is great for viewing pictures and videos with friends and family or online shopping with Microsoft Edge.

Light, thin and fast, with a battery that lasts up to 22 hours, it’s one of the smallest 13-inch laptops on the market, but has big Windows 10 features like Microsoft Edge and Cortana. This device starts at $999 USD.

HP Spectre x360 – Sleek and ultra-slim, this convertible PC offers beauty, flexibility and power.

HP Spectre x360 – Sleek and ultra-slim, this convertible PC offers beauty, flexibility and power.

The 360-degree hinge lets you flip to the perfect view. Get creative with the Full HD touchscreen and enjoy blazing fast performance, while using all the features in Windows 10 for work and play. Get rid of passwords with the built-in Windows Hello face sign-in camera and browse the web with Microsoft Edge. This device starts at $1,149 USD.

Let’s talk a little more about how Windows 10 devices can help you manage the holiday season with digital tools to stay secure, handle your to-do list and even enjoy a few moments for yourself.

Keep your devices secure and your gifts under wraps

With Windows Hello, you can sign into your Windows 10 devices* and apps** in less than 2 seconds – that’s 3 times faster1 than a password that you have to remember and type in. Windows Hello uses your face or fingerprint to recognize you instantly. When it’s time to do some online shopping, use the Microsoft Edge browser for a faster, safer browsing experience. If you share a computer, you can use InPrivate browsing, which doesn’t store cookies, history or temporary files from your browsing session. That means no accidental gift exposure.

Stay productive through the holidays

Want to make a quick list or get creative with your to-do list? Windows Ink and Pen give you the freedom of natural movement with a digital pen that is as easy to use as pen and paper. Use it with OneNote or a Sticky Note to jot down a few items and they’ll automatically turn into a checklist. Or markup webpages right in Microsoft Edge when you’re idea-shopping online — just circle the item you like, right on the web page, and save it or send it. You can even use Ink in the Windows 10 Maps app for trip planning.

Never miss a beat or a festive moment  

Cortana, your personal digital assistant, can help you breeze through the holidays. You can type or talk to Cortana on your PC, tablet or phone. If you’re worried about getting to that holiday party on time, Cortana can check traffic and let you know when to leave. Cortana can even remind you to bring the eggnog (or help you find some at the nearest store). And when you’re up to your elbows in cookie dough, if you’ve activated “Hey Cortana” in your settings, you can say “Hey Cortana” from across the room, and ask to convert ounces to teaspoons and Cortana can help you get that answer — no sticky fingers required.

The holidays can be a hectic time for all, but they don’t have to be with the help of Microsoft and new beautiful Windows 10 devices.

*Cortana available in select markets.
* Windows Hello requires specialized hardware, including fingerprint reader, illuminated IR sensor or other biometric sensors and capable devices.
** Limited to compatible apps.
1Based on average time comparison between typing a password respectively detecting a face or fingerprint to authentication success.