Nearly a week ago, Microsoft unleashed an early release of Windows 10 for phones through their Insider preview program. Considering that Windows 10 is far from finished, there are a lot more questions than answers at this time for consumers as to the endgame for Microsoft's new OS.
Gabriel Aul, who has become the default spokesperson for the Windows Insider program, has taken to Twitter to respond to the myriad of inquiries from users. Here is a recap of some of the bits we have learned recently.
- Windows 10 for phone preview builds go out once a month, "roughly" (Source)
- New tile sizes, like the 'double tall' for People hub and extra-large for Cortana are experimental; no decision made yet on whether they will be used or not (users feedback is requested) (Source)
- More tile sizes or designs may be forthcoming (Source)
- The Spartan browser is being tested internally, but nothing set yet for its release to public previews. When it meets certain criteria, it will be released (Source)
- Existing Silverlight apps will still be supported on Phone, and Silverlight apps for PC continue to be supported as well (Source)
- Preview for Developers and Windows Insider are two different programs. The former is more of a "very close to release" version of the OS, where Windows Insider is very early in the development process. It looks like Preview for Developers will continue. (Source)
- Regarding USB On The Go support: "Nothing to share about OTG at this point, we know it's a popular request." (Source)
- Aul advises against installing Windows 10 to non-supported phones due to risks (Source)
- No ETA for new Outlook apps for PC and phone (Source)
Although not everyone's questions are answered, Aul certainly has responded enough to keep us satisfied. The new builds of Windows 10 for phones every month should ensure that those updates are quite significant. It is not yet clear how Microsoft will utilize Fast and Slow tracks for the preview program, leaving some wiggle room for release dates.
In terms of installing Windows 10 for phones on non-supported hardware, Aul is reflecting on increasing 'bricking' reports from users who are running into issues with trying to hack the OS onto their phones. As such, we are still advising users to not attempt this trick, and instead drop $50 on a Lumia 635 instead.
Microsoft clearly has a long path ahead to finalize Windows 10 for general release, something expected later this summer. Users are encouraged to standby, give feedback where they can, have patience and continue to watch the show.
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Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, 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 for some reason, watches. 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.