Microsoft confirms Windows 10 'Sets' won't be in Redstone 5

Back at Build 2018, Microsoft stated that its upcoming Sets feature for Windows 10 would be coming in a future update, but did not confirm it for the upcoming Redstone 5 release this fall. Sets is a big change in how users interact with Windows, so it's important that Microsoft gets its initial implementation right.

Today, the company has confirmed that Sets won't be coming with Redstone 5 later this year, and is removing the feature from Insider builds until a later date. Microsoft did the same back when it first started testing Sets with Redstone 4, pulling it before Redstone 4 was finalized and re-implementing it in the Redstone 5 builds later.

Thank you for your continued support of testing Sets. We continue to receive valuable feedback from you as we develop this feature helping to ensure we deliver the best possible experience once it's ready for release.Starting with this build, we're taking Sets offline to continue making it great. Based on your feedback, some of the things we're focusing on include improvements to the visual design and continuing to better integrate Office and Microsoft Edge into Sets to enhance workflow.If you have been testing Sets, you will no longer see it as of today's build, however, Sets will return in a future WIP flight. Thanks again for your feedback.

Microsoft is not committing to any scheduled feature update for Sets, instead saying it'll ship when it's ready. We'll see Sets return again in future Windows 10 builds, but that might not be for a while.

Sets not being ready in time for Redstone 5 should come as no surprise to anyone. Microsoft prefaced this at Build, and was very obvious in making sure it did not state that Sets would be coming in Redstone 5. Microsoft has been listening to feedback on Sets, and continues to retool and rework it to better fit into the workflow of users.

If anything, this is a good thing. Shipping a feature that isn't fully baked will just make users want to turn it off or not use it, just like what happened with the original launch of Microsoft Edge. What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments!

Zac Bowden
Senior Editor

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • Of course it's not. Sets is not a small or medium feature like Timeline or Ink or Cortana. Sets changes the general UI, interaction and navigation of almost every single app. It changes how people use Edge and it need Edge to make some MAJOR update just to unify the tab experience. It also need almost all UWP to update their title bar and switch to the new navigation panel in order to use the new placement of back button and horizontal navigation. It need almost all UWP apps to redesign their top color scheme. Animation need to be smooth and UI need to be non destructive when only one app is open when pwople does not want to see tabs. It need PWA apps to talk to the title bar too because the old title bar will appear as a second bar(just look at twitter PWA with Sets). It is REALLY REALLY FAR from half way. And it might not even be a feature that actually come out. It is really likely that they decide this is too much work and requires a lot from the not-so-active windows developer community. It might be a better idea to just make the task bar better and have those features and make some improvements to virtual desktop.
  • I don't agree. Sets could come to feature only apps that actually support it. Not all apps need to be updated. Only the ones that care to leverage it.
  • There's a third party option for you if you still need access to sets. It's called groupy
  • It just means releasing Sets now pushes people over the Edge.XD
  • Totally agree with you, Zac. The longer they delay sets, the better. In fact, if they delayed it indefinitely, it wouldn't hurt my feelings at all.
  • Considering it's optional and you can turn it off, is it really important that it never comes in any form?
  • For Sets to return, they need to be integrated such that any app will be able to use them and developers won't be forced to update their apps to make them compatible.
  • I agree with this 100%. It needs to be passive. It's easier for one software company to make the update than it is for every individual developer to do so
  • I think advanced users would agree with you. But what avout simpler people? First impressions matter to them, and if it is a bad one, there is little to no chance they will try it again.
  • It could be turned off by default so everyone could be happy.
  • Agreed 100% if people have been working with windowed apps instead of tabbed apps for decades this should be an optional feature that can be turned on/off. Sets is a drastic/radical change in the way humans interact with multiple apps running in parallel and perhaps some people will be more productive and others won't, I would say is even more drastic/radical than tablet mode/desktop mode, so at the end is good to see Microsoft wants to get this feature done the right way.
  • Is there a global option to turn off Sets instead of turning it off for individual apps? And what about the common back button position? Will it move to the top left corner as it used to be? And what about the seamless design in apps like Settings and groove? Will they have an empty title bar then?
  • So, given the delay, is the Stardock solution any good?
  • Good! The current state of Sets is absolutely awful. It completely destroys the UI design of Windows 10 with these tacked-on tabs. The feature in itself is a good idea (though I don't know how much I'd personally use it). But the current implementation is simply awful. It adds vertical height to all windows for no reason and completely destroys the acrylic look for sidebars and toolbars. The UI needs a complete rethink to integrate the tabs into the existing title bar and visual design - and to only show tabs when two apps are actually grouped. I am not sure that this can be done without work by individual developers, because a lot of windows apps (including UWP) use customized title bars. I'd rather they spent resources on improving consistency in the Windows 10 UI (UWP Explorer for instance, better dark mode) rather than Sets, which seems to be a feature that demos well, but has limited practical use.
  • Stardock's groupy seems to do a pretty good job to be honest for the software it does work with.
  • Hell, ok Sets, but what have them done with Skype?! Another kick for UWP?
  • Skype is dead. Teams is replacing it for enterprise and they don't need a consumer solution.
  • Skype is not Skype for Business.
    Skype for Businesss is being retired in favor of Teams.
  • Ok, maybe Skype is dead. But why do they use side solution (ReactNative, which is a JS-Facebook crap), when they have uwp, c# and Xamarin?
  • Skype used to be great until MS took it and did their thing to it, but then MS is pretty good at doing that. i use Skype to chat to a couple of people, still trying to find something to replace it.
  • Ad47uk/Adrian s stop trolling
  • I used it for gaming, now everyone is on Discord.
  • Skype was strugglinh way before Microsoft bought them. That's why eBay got rid of it.
  • Actually its still a uwp
    and most users were asking for more of the new look
    we may see a touch of fluent design come back into it later though
  • That is a not a bad thing,. Sets was about trying to push people into using Edge, it will save me disabling it, when i eventually update to redstone 5 or what ever Ms calls it.
  • You don't actually have to use edge to use sets there's the frequently used apps, app list section. But Please ad47uk/
    Adrian s stop trolling.... no at the very least give accurate information.
  • Like clicking the + button doesn't open the full fledged Edge window? I understand that you're a Microsoft fanboy but you don't have to be gullible at the same time.
  • Have you even used sets? Of course not...
  • That Literally irrelevant
    if the first thing the user see when they open a set is the frequently used apps and use the app list
    With out ever invoke any web search
    but sure call me a fanboy🤷‍♂️ but at least I'm not misleading people here.
  • i never said you did, but sets is tightly integrated into Edge and this is what Microsoft wants everyone to do, use their cloud service, use all Ms software,. Lets get more info from people. If you do not like my posts then block me, simple as that, I live in country where I still have freedom of speech, just because you don't.
  • quote Set was trying to push people into using edge sounds like it to me.
    but yes it integrates with edge for a combo of apps and web in case you wanna do a search on the web. But by default it shows you frequently used apps I'll give an example I use the Netflix app a lot
    but often I don't quite know what I wanna watch
    so I open a set then type in what's new on Netflix
    get a quick web search Without actually having to open up A browser or changing up my flow. I have nothing against free speech :-)
    just wish your rhetoric was more balance
    instead of always one sided In the negative direction against everything new or different Then what you're accustomed to. one day maybe
  • They can't implement it, it was all a gimmick!
  • It's better they wait and get it right before release it. it is a major feature.
  • You had to come here and be a troll at the same time!
  • You are blind.
  • Only thing I used it for was Explorer. Back to Clover, I guess.
  • awwwww.... please... IMPROVE THE STAGNANT TABLET UI/UX !!
  • "Once we are finished with adding new fonts in regedit, we will see."
  • W10 development cycle continues.
    Announce a feature for the next version.
    Ship it in the 2nd version.
    Actually polish it in the 3rd. Microsoft *should* ship it when it's truly ready. And their bi-annually schedule hurts them because they don't have enough time to meaningfully implement or polish enough stuff to make the update feel like something "major".
  • Glad they pulled it if it felt unstable. Better to get it right. From what I saw wasn’t really seeing it be a big part of my workflow anyway. Sort of like that whole edge feature to sweep all the tabs for later. Would rather see more focus on stable releases than features just for features sake.
  • Boo! I for one love Sets, and use it all the time. It works great for how I use my PC. I'm very sorry to see it go, and I hope it comes back soon... =(
  • I really hope they get this feature working and add it to Windows. Such a great feature (if it works right).
    Glad to see them wait until they get it right, or not at all.
    I have been trying Really hard to use Edge as Default, it's way better than it was at launch, but still not great. I do have it as default, but sometimes I just cave and use Chrome.
  • IIRC it was announced beforehand that it may not be in RS5 during initial Skip Ahead release.
    Like with My People - half of features just doesn't appear to work on my computer (restore previous tabs always was empty for me).
    The main problem is that while it promotes grouping related documents/sites/apps, it really destroys multitasking - without ability to show related windows side by side or on separate monitors it required constant switching between tabs which was pain point for me, when I need to copy/cross-check info in excel and site/IDE.
    IMHO it requires returning to whiteboard and rethinking approach to support these use cases, while keeping "restore related" feature.
  • As an insider, I got to use sets. It felt very intuitive and quickly became a part of my workflow. There were a few minor bugs, but nothing I found to be a show stopper. Since it's been removed, I miss it and hope it comes back soon.
  • 🤣