This week in Windows Mobile: June 19, 2016

A lot is going on in the world of Windows phone. So much, in fact, that it is sometimes tough to catch every important story.

Device rumors come and go. New apps join the Windows Store, and your favorite app can get a big update with a new look or new features.

Therefore, every week we will compile a list of the Windows phone and Windows 10 Mobile news that you just shouldn't miss. Welcome to the "Windows Mobile Weekly Digest."

Windows Mobile

Windows Mobile

This week, the Windows 10 10586.420 cumulative update was released for PC and Mobile, leaving squashed numerous bugs in its wake. The update is available for all non-Insiders and those on Insider Production Release.

Fast Ring Insiders picked up Windows 10 Mobile Build 14364, only to have it supplanted a couple days later by build 14367, with even more fixes.

Insiders running Redstone builds of the OS saw the Windows Store get updated with the return of screenshots, as well as a new Share button. However, many are still having issues with Check for Updates, which hopefully will be addressed this week.

Microsoft announced that it will be removing the Kids Corner from Windows 10 Mobile as part of the Anniversary Update in July. The decision comes after an analysis of the feature showed that customer usage is just too low to justify the time and money to continue developing it.

And after last week's news that the Wallet 2.0 app will bring NFC Tap to Pay to Windows 10 Mobile, new information suggests that only newer phones will get the feature.

NFC Tap to Pay relies on a technology called Host Card Emulation (HCE), which helps keep credit card information secure. However, devices must be certified by credit card companies like MasterCard to use the technology, and only certain models of Windows smartphones currently appear on that list.

At the moment, this is mostly speculative, as nothing has been officially announced, but the evidence certainly leans toward that conclusion.

Other notable items:



Xbox Live members on iOS and Android joined their Windows-using counterparts in accessing all things Xbox on their devices thanks to the new official apps for those platforms. The Xbox app for iOS and Android are mostly retooled versions of the already existing SmartGlass apps, complete with all of the old features and a bunch of new ones.

The official Windows Central App was updated with a snazzy new layout, quiet hours, and podcasts, amongst other things. The Weather Channel app for Windows 10 Mobile got a makeover, bringing the UI in line with that of its iOS and Android siblings.

Some well-known names joined the Windows 10 family this week. Expedia's new Windows 10 UWP app for PC and Mobile took flight with Cortana voice commands and interactive notifications on board.

The United States Postal Service delivered a new package tracking app for Windows 10 computers, tablets, and smartphones.

Facebook's official app for Windows 10 hit the Store as a beta. The previous app was developed for the social media giant by Microsoft, but this new one comes from Facebook themselves.

Wells Fargo announced that they will be discontinuing their Windows Phone 8.1 app later this month, but you can bank on a Windows 10 app coming soon.

Yet another Skype preview version for Windows 10 Mobile leaked. This build needs to be side-loaded, just like the ones before it.

And we got our hands on an early copy of the new Office Lens app, ported from Windows 8.1 and headed to Windows 10 and Mobile.

Other notable items:



One of the big game-specific announcements to come out of E3 2016 was an expansion of the Minecraft Realms program called "The Friendly Update" that will unite players across Windows 10, iOS, Android, and Gear VR.

The update went live for Windows 10 shortly after the big reveal. Support for game consoles is expected to roll out sometime next year.

Other notable items:

Be sure to weigh in on this week's news in the comments section. See you next week!

Seth Brodeur