During Microsoft's Ignite conference this week the next stage of Continuum for Windows 10 Mobile was revealed. Likely slated for the Redstone 2 release slated for early 2017 the "next evolution" of Continuum pushes the phone as a PC experience even further.
Those new features include:
- Independent Monitor Idle – Let one screen time out while you keep working on the other one
- Proximity Connect – Keep your phone in your pocket and connect wirelessly to your dock
- Customizable – Independently customizable Start screens across connected devices
- More PC-like experience – Enable "win key + type"; Taskbar app pinning, System tray Windowing
While Continuum, as it is today, is interesting its applicability to the real world is somewhat limiting due to the incomplete analogy of the experience. While it looks PC-ish being able to see only one app at a time is rather limiting. Being able to move windowed apps independently, snapping them, and having them overlap is a much more familiar and useful scenario.
Microsoft is adding other bits too like PC-like notifications and right-click context menus to go even further.
With this next stage of Continuum Microsoft is now improving and refining the experience as they continue to blur the line between PC and your smartphone. This progression will only increase with each Windows milestone reached until the hardware and software experience closely mimics today's PCs.
Thinking of the Continuum project as a journey and it should be fascinating to see it evolve not only in 2017 but years from now as well.
What do you make of these features coming to Continuum? Does it change your mind at all about this concept of a smartphone and a real differentiator for Microsoft?
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Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.