Why Windows 10's new 'Sets' feature is key to the future of Windows

Late last week, Microsoft released a new Insider Preview build of the next major Windows 10 update coming later this year that includes an early version of a new feature called "Sets". It essentially takes the tabbed browsing interface found in Microsoft Edge and bolts it on top of normal apps, allowing the user to group both apps and websites under a single tabbed window. This is an interesting play for an OS called "Windows," but that's because Sets isn't just about grouping apps together under one window; it's about Microsoft Edge and the future of Windows itself.

There are a lot of layers to Sets. For starters, it brings a new user interaction model to Windows that lets users sync entire groups of apps and web pages across devices. More importantly, however, it integrates Microsoft Edge into the workflow of millions of people without them necessarily noticing. This is important, because the majority of people today use Chrome, and refuse to even try and use other browsers, out of habit if nothing else.

That's a real problem for Microsoft and its Edge browser. The mindset of many is if it's not Chrome, it's not an option. If Microsoft wants to invest in things like Windows 10 S, and in the long run, Windows Core OS, it needs to shake people's dependency on Chrome, and simply building a good browser isn't enough. That's where Sets comes in.

Integrating Edge into your workflow

The beauty of Sets is that the tabbed interface hooks directly into Microsoft Edge. When you press the new tab button, just like you would in a normal browser, it takes you to a dedicated Start page, housed in Microsoft Edge. From here, you can launch not only apps but websites, too, just like in a normal browser. Microsoft is making this new tab page a portal to everything, locally or on the web, with shortcuts to recently opened apps, documents, and web pages.

Sets is an important gateway to a version of Windows 10 that's truly modern. If Microsoft can alleviate the need for Chrome, it can finally innovate and push forward a more modern version of Windows 10 build on Windows Core OS. Building a modern version of Windows is seriously important for Microsoft. If Windows is to remain relevant, it needs to modernize. It needs to shake the dependencies it has on 20-year-old legacy software and components, and build an OS that is flexible enough to run on the smallest or biggest of form factors, and even on form factors that don't yet exist.

With Windows Core OS, this project is already underway. Microsoft is testing the waters with a "streamlined" version of Windows 10 called Windows 10 S, which is locked to the Store and as such, doesn't have apps like Chrome available to the user. Windows Core OS is the next step in that idea, except this time the OS really does become streamlined. The biggest legacy app in use today is Chrome, by a wide margin. If you remove the need for Chrome, Microsoft is more able to move forward in its modernizing of Windows, and also take back some of that browser market share.

Infrastructure is important

Microsoft Edge on Android

Microsoft Edge on Android (Image credit: Windows Central)

And with Edge now being available on Android and iOS, users can still get the same syncing-across-device functionality that they already know and love in Chrome. If Microsoft were to try pushing Edge without having apps available on other platforms, it would fail spectacularly. A lot of people who use Chrome do so for the ability to sync between Chrome on other platforms with ease. So it was vital that Microsoft made Edge available on other platforms. So the infrastructure is there, and now all Microsoft has to do is get people to actually use Edge.

So that's why Sets is an important feature that is about way more than what's on the surface. It introduces a new way of using Windows and is also an important gateway toward Microsoft being able to move forward. It's designed to get people using Timeline and Edge, and slowly make people less dependant on Chrome.

Initial impressions are key

Microsoft needs to build Sets out and outline why it's a better way of working. Getting Sets right the first time is super important because if Microsoft doesn't, people will turn Sets off and never give it another try. That's what happened with the original version of Microsoft Edge, and you can bet it will happen again if Sets isn't amazing from the get-go.

My significant other, for example, is your average Joe ... or Jane. Not really that interested in technology, she uses Chrome, and her laptop for work and procrastinating. I recently told her that Sets was a feature that was coming soon, and explained it to her a bit. She was not too pleased with what she was hearing. I didn't mention Edge, only that they were bringing tabs to apps as well as web pages. Her immediate response to this was "but I don't want my apps and web pages grouped together." I'm sure there will be a lot of normal people out there who have the same mindset, so it's important for Microsoft to get the implementation of Sets right immediately out of the gate. So, no pressure then, Microsoft.

Zac Bowden
Senior Editor

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows 10 on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • Implementation is key, yes, with the primary piece of that being STABILITY, which MS never seems to get right. UWPs still crash more often than they should when trying to do any meaningful work in them. MS needs to nail sets the first time. There is no room for "OS as a service" approach here. That has proven unworkable, as updates don't come fast enough and tend to break one thing while they fix others.  
  • UWPs are stable on my systems (except the buggy WC app, unfortunately...) so that's not a general issue. I agree with the article in that MS have to be careful to keep local apps and internet based web sites conceptually separate as it will be a big annoyance for many otherwise. I don't agree with the article when it says MS needs to drop legacy programs. They are completely flexible and give the PC its big advantage, that I can pretty much do what ever I want on it in the way I want to do it. If that flexibility is removed, whilst I like and support UWP apps they will not be enough as they are locked down too hard and are glued (without having to do plenty of fannying about) to the Windows Store. Customers will not like being pushed in to doing things Microsoft's way. Those people are already buried in the Apple ecosystem. If MS can remain open and flexible with Windows whilst adding options then users will have the best of both worlds. If they try to push an S-Mode (RT) future on people then badness will result.
  • Are you on Fast ring? Why not step down to Slow?
  • It doesn't matter if MS makes Sets great.
    It doesn't matter if MS gets Sets right the first time.
    It doesn't matter how useful Sets is
    It doesn't matter, none of that will matter.
    It doesn't matter how great anything MS does is if nobody knows about it.
    How will the average consumer find out in detail about Sets? We've been through this before, over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, and over, again, and again, again, and again, again, and again, again, and again.
    Some type of marketing will be needed if MS wants even a few average consumers to use this. If they are wanting to shake up Chrome market share word of mouth, hope, and prayer, isn't gonna cut it. So, now, we see that the success of Sets is just as dependent on awareness as it is to be intuitive. Both are equally critically necessary.
  • And, Zac... As much as you guys talk about what MS needs to do you never address their biggest issues
    .... Marketing, mindshare, and awareness. Why is that?
  • Because marketing isn't the issue. It is just your scapegoat so you do not have to admit when Microsoft doesn't have a
    competitive product. Microsoft isn't some unknown behemoth. People know and use their products and the good ones rise to the top. When they don't, it isn't because of marketing and it isn't because the product is bad, it just isn't as good as the competition. Microsoft has competition now. They need to make great products. Good won't cut it in 2018.
  • I'm going to have to agree with rod to a degree.  It IS marlketing to a good extent.  I'm an IT professional.  I have the opportunity to use all manner of tech.  I'm also the guy in our company (over 200 employees) that trains people on the computers and phones we give them.  We have over 75 Windows Phones still deployed.  When I show people the Windows Phone they will be using, they 1) often comment that they didn't even know that Microsoft ever made phones, 2) are all usually quite impressed with them and pleasantly surprised once I take them through a 2-hour training course on them, and 3) after some time using the phones about half express disappointment that Windows Phone is a dead platform.  I see different but similar reactions with people that have never used Windows 10, and are stil using 7 because there was never any successful marketing to show and convince them that upgrading to 10 would be a significant change for the better, and would give them an app-capable OS.
    I've said it for years, MS sucks at marketing.  They have historically failed to convey capability and possibility with their product lines.  It is only recently that the Surface line has had what I beleieve to be genuinely good ads, and the 2 minute video for the Surface Studio, in my mind, stands as the single most impactful and impressive bit of marketing MS has ever put out.  Sadly, it stands largely alone.
    I just hired my first ever assistant.  A younger guy with a physics degree who has programming and Linux experince.  In the three days he's worked here he's commented several times that he didn't relaize how much Windows has changed and added new features and capabilities, or how good some of the MS-branded hardware was/is.
    MS does pretty well at preaching to their own choir, but they REALLY need help gaining the attention of the general public.
  • It only matters that you say that rod because even IF their marketing were Google perfect, you would still say that and resent them for the past because as a human you are unforgiving and never move on SIGH 🙄
  • Marketing is easy when you have a good product.
  • Oh you think so? All I see is crappy, niche products other than what Msft delivers.
  • Hmm, I don't have any issues with any of the UWPs I have used.  But it is a pretty new technology.  
  • I think they also need to add snapping to sets.  It would be more difficult but if I snap a window to the left side of a monitor and another to the right, I may do this often especially in certain contexts.  Along those lines, Microsoft should allow us to say "Save this set" where it can then be pinned to the taskbar or start menu or even desktop.
  • i'd want snapping of two apps within a sets window. before firefox abandoned their old extension framework i used "Tile Tabs" to do exactly that, and it was really nice to quickly compare two pages. you could even split it in multiple tiles of varying sizes, but just a simple two-way split would already be killer to have in sets.
  • Great ideas, BTW.
    But, what would that matter if nobody knows about it?
  • Oh it will definitely be known. Some new things (even unorthodox) become normal as time passes by.
  • This 10000x. If Sets can remember all my windows, not just the tabs it'll be extremely helpful. Most of my work usage is looking at different windows for information which is much more efficient than constantly switching between tabs for information. If I open a 'set' with an Excel sheet of a budget, a Word document with a proposal, and an email with feedback for it I'm going to have those side by side. If the next time I open that proposal those other windows also open, in the same arrangement that would be amazing. If it is just restricted to the tabs it'll be less useful.
  • Multiple desktops is the future.
  • That has existed for quite some time.  Nobody where I work uses that feature.  I've even demonstrated it to people I thought would most likely make use of it, but they all responded with 'meh' and went on with their work.
  • I want to use multiple desktops, but the fact that you can't have them restore when logging off is a deal breaker for me.
  • That's what hibernate is for though?
  • They might improve that but then so few people use the virtual desktops that they might not invest the time into it. 
  • Are you serious?  Where do you work then?  Where I worked (recently retired software engineer), everybody uses multiple desktops and multiple monitors.  
  • I work in IT in a manufacturing and design company.  We have designers and engineers and programmers, etc.  I have never seen any of them use virtual desktops, most have multiple monitors, some up to 4. 
  • Multiple desktops is the present. Where have you been hiding?
  • I still don't like sets. I get why some people are all over it, but I was never the kind of guy that does everything in the browser, in fact, I always prefer native apps over websites. But that's just me 😁
  • This enables tabbed explorer windows, that's all I'm excited about
  • That is what I am looking forward to. Quicker access to folders will be awesome, especially if you can drag files to the tab you want to move them to.
  • This is the part I don't understand. How is that more convenient than having those explorer windows snapped so that you can actually see what and where you're dragging as opposed to it being hidden in a different tab?
  • I just use the toolbar for that.  I get the "grouping" but I guess I just don't work like that.  
  • i am like you in some ways, on myh phone I use apps, because it is easier,  on my computer, if i use something like Facebook, i do via my browser. So it depends on what I am doing and on what platform.
    But the way Ms will want me to use my computer with sets will not happen.  Zac's other half have the same feelings as i do about the whole thing, I do not want my browser to be integrated  with applications.  Also, if people can not get the extensions they want in Edge then it is going to fail.  Sets would be turned off on this machine from the start.  
  • Give it time, will you.
  • I'll definitely try it, of course, and we'll see if it'll grow on me or not. All I'm saying is that I'm not as excited for it as everybody else seems to be.
  • Just keep investing in that desktop experience MS, that's where the future is.
  • I happen to be an exteme outlier. There is no universe where I'd lower myself to using Chrome.  But I also know that Edge FAILS on so many levels (my hatred of Google doesn't blind me to the inadequacies of Microsoft's choices & results).  Edge is tremendously slow, inconsistent in ability to render sites completely and, in my opinon, tries to do too much, BE too much.  When I want to browse I ONLY want to browse.  I don't need my browser to be my PDF reader or ebook reader or whatever.  Like Zac's significant other, I don't want my apps grouped together.  Very rarely is any of my work in need of grouping.  I work in one or two apps at a time because I find it more efficient use of my time to complete one thing before I move to another--too many WIP usually results in poorly executed work.  I can imagine there are types of work that are predictably repeatable in form and substance for which grouping certain apps makes sense.  For me, that's never the case. I have no idea what this looks like for the average user.  Perhaps more are like me in this respect, or perhaps not. Time will tell.  But I'd just be happy if Edge actually worked worth a darn so I can stop going back to IE11.
  • I agree. I hate google too but everytime I try to use Edge I get reminded why I should quit using it. It has been a few years now and it's still as horrendous as ever. If Edge is the future of Windows then that future is doomed.  
  • Firefox Quantum is a really good modern browser if you feel like giving something different a shot.
  • It is indeed, I went from Edge to Firefox after Quantum. And Now, it seems, Microsoft wants to drag me back by force...
  • Again, rather than just make their browser (or any other product/service) better Microsoft thinks up ways to force people to use it. Until that mentality changes features like these will be a hard sell to Chrome users.
  • Forced to what? Sets can be disabled even in the last Skip Away build.
  • Don't you feel they need to stop for at leat ONE update cycle and just POLISH the OS, assress the millions of small interface and usability issues that the OS is riddled with. I mean they have tonns of feedback on that. I understand that all the stuff that is wrong with Groove does not impact the OS usability at all and they don't even include Groove as default app now. It;s Spotify. I didn;t belive my eyes when I clean imstalled SlowRing build today. I had to actually download Groove and People apps (I get the people app - it is horrible). But Groove is actally pretty awesome and needs just a bit more polish. Regarding sets. I will jut turn them off, like I did with MyPeople - it is completely and utterly useless for me.
  • Why bother fixing things and making them better when you can just devise schemes to force people to your product?
  • You mean the last 2 updates weren't mostly bug fixes? I mean the last 2 updates have already been pretty underwhelming. 
  • Yes they were very underwhelming, but mostly cause they were tinkering with the core I suppose. Big noise was abot the absolute fail "MyPeople" - there are no apps that matter that support it. If Messenger, FB and VK would support it I will use it, but we can be honest, no developer gives a flying F about MyPeople. The last update was not bug fixes - it was bug packadge - the touch keyboard went to shait so majorly that I basically skipped the entire FCU and jumped from CU to RS4. I actually installed the slow build today and later installed the fast build to see if the touch keyboard is any better. It made lot's of progress, but still, no SHIFT+arrows functionality, in Edge and Facebook it covers the input field... Wrote about it on Twitter and LeBlank went "Oh, I didn't know the touch keyboard was broken" - seriosly? There's a number of entries about it in Feedback Hub and also, does anyone actually use SP in MSFT to test the flights? Like not for show but actually for daily stuff. I suppose not.
  • CU was great in that regard, but FCU... Aw maaan... Things that worked fine on CU just broke. YouTube video payback becomes laggy and the audio starts to stutter after a short period of usage, and 1080p60 worked flawlessly on CU. Now I feel lucky if 1080p30 works fine. The PC sh*ts itself when I connect a phone to use USB tethering. The touch keyboard is way too small to use on big screens. And the overall performance degradation is huge af... I think I'll do a clean install when RS4 comes out, and hope for the best. The problem is, that it's not that easy to do it on a mini PC...
  • The problem is that Edge doesn't work properly with some of the Web sites I use regularly. Also, simple apps like Facebook and Messenger freeze and/or slow down my Surface Pro. If the simple apps don't work right, how can I trust the more complicated apps to work?
  • Not only Edge doesn't work properly with all major websites and even some that look like they could play an important role in the future of the web, but it also crashes all the time. That would be fine IF they didn't bind it to your other apps and even Windows Explorer.  Which they have, and now every time it crashes, and it does often, takes everything along with it, even core features that are super important for the operation of your OS, like Windows Explorer.  The only remedy, and result, is to force shut down your OS, risking loss of data.   I bet that idiot Belfiore had this "amazing" idea of forcing edge in there...  I have first hand experience. I assure you, it takes your whole system down with it. 
    I like the idea and I did give it a try, but after several such incidets I switched it off. It was slowing my machine down (an i7 with 16GB RAM 1060 and SSD), just by running Edge on the background.   ( i am typing ths with edge.. spelling does not work either...) 
  • you are having serious issues with your system if it crashes like that- edge is not tied to the explorer shell and they will not crash together. also egde on my 11 year old core2 6600 runs much better and more memory efficient than chrome.
  • I don't see this in the least. People use multiple windows in applications so that they can interact with both simultaneously. You are working on a report in Word, you open up a browser to look up some research sites and you cut-and-paste them into Word. You are entering invoices into an accounting system. You open up a second window with email, go through each of the bills mailed to you, and enter them into your accounting system. Etc., etc. This is why Windows adds better and better snapping features. It is why it added multiple monitor support. It is why people rebelled over Windows 8 and why 10 added the ability to run UWA in seperate windows -- side by side. It is why many apps use dialogs, pop-up windows, panels, etc. As soon as you use tabs... you lose the context of what you were working on. Tabs are inheritantly less useful than having multiple windows on the screen. You have to remember what is on each and switch between them -- like full-screen apps in Windows 8, or 10 tablet mode. It may be necessary on a small screen or touch device, but it isn't optimal. I predict 'sets' won't catch on. They aren't much more useful than just running full-screen apps and switching via the taskbar or alt-tab. Maybe fine for 'apps' which just show content, but applications involving a lot of data entry and creation is going to want both side-by-side in order to work in one while looking up information in another. This is much better handled via multiple desktops.
  • I agree, they might not make much sense for documents or programs, but I think they could be great for folders. Hopefully they are implemented well and do not have any silly restrictions like only certain apps or something.
  • I still don't get it. It seems like all sets does is things that windows already does, but in tabs. If anything its way less convenient and is just added clutter.
  • Won't it reduce clutter? Instead of having several folders open that you are working from, you just have one with tabs. Sounds like less clutter to me.
  • The taskbar already does that. I don't know why they are trying to reinvent the multiple desktops function if it's not broken.
  • Not the same. You still have folders all over the place.
  • I for one am very excited about sets. I only hope MS works it out fully and that it is stable before release. I can see this changing the way i work. I only hope that we get to the point of saving sets as templates that work well with office and the file system. If with one click i could open a new folder that would contain a Word document (with my predesigned template), an Excel Spreadsheet (again with my predesigned template), a subfolder for to dump Photos and contact details...etc Id be golden. Extra points if i could send the photos to the correct "set" and folder on my phone and have it sync across to my pc. The possibilities are endless really. 
  • Not sure which moron told them that binding a broken and totally unwanted browser, which is actually worse than what IE in terms of performance and features, with their OS is a great idea, but that someone must be super desperate to have more people using Edge so it doesn't appear as a total failure.  Lessons with binding IE to windows were not learned, and we are now looking at an even worse situation. Sets is a great idea, but its execution is utter crap. Include to this the aforementioned Edge crashfest disaster and you got an atomic bomb threatening your OS... Windows got a last shot in the arm with Windows 10.  They won't be as lucky the next 5 years if they continue this way. Especially if iOS ends up being Apple's main OS. 
  • Zac's significant other while talking to her about Sets. 😂 https://media.tenor.com/images/4a91db8e1b69da39d2dc4d9066bfb9c2/tenor.gif
  • I'm keen to give it a go. I am just switching from Firefox to Egde, as so many websites do not work for me on Firefox, but perfectly on Chrome or Edge. I do not like Google being too dominant and I dont trust them. So I'd like to see Edge and Sets succeeed. But MS need to put more resources (people) into to it to fix all the bugs in Edge.    
  • Yes, right, I have commented on articles about Sets before and also in Windows Feedback, I don't want my apps and web pages grouped together in 1 window. Nothing against OS support for tabbed windows. Sure developers will have a good way to use them. But, if it is about productivity, then give me functionality to save the lay-out of my virtual desktops
  • This may have been addressed somewhere previously, but what happens if I have a UWP app pulled up in Edge on my laptop and then attempt to resume this session on an Android device? I understand PWA may work in this situation since that is basically just a fancy website, but what would happen in the non-PWA app case?
  • It boggles the mind. WindowsCentral author complains about ChromeOS. Microsoft copies ChromeOS AND MAKES IT WORSE. WindowsCentral author cheers. Consistently inconsistent. Congratulations. Shout outs to @theefman and @bleached for their astute observations. `Rather than make Edge better Microsoft figures out a way to force users to use Edge`. What I read in this article is an author cheering for Microsoft to put its customers in a position where Microsoft could then dictate how they use the internet, AGAIN, like it shamelessly did in the 1990's and 2000's. Zac appears to indicate that it's a good thing that Chrome is BARRED from appearing in the Windows Store. That vision of the future is worrisome. It's not that Google or Mozilla refuse to make their respective popular and EFFECTIVE browsers with their respective browser engines for Windows 10 S, it's that Microsoft PROHIBITS them. As users we all suffer when we are denied choice when it doesn't serve a purpose. Prohibiting other browsers from the Windows Store serves MICROSOFT'S goals, not OUR needs! When Microsoft gets into a monopoly position it has a rich history of abusing its customers, its OEMs and its competitors alike. Perhaps now that Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates are no longer part of the company that tendency to abuse a monopoly isn't as strong, but, I won't hold my breath!
  • Ah, but you see: Chromebooks don't have a Microsoft / Windows logo. Mystery solved. Anyway I really hope EU drags Microsoft back to court for this anti-consumer and anti-competitive behaviour.
  • Microsoft always maintained that the browser was a key component of the OS but had this vision disrupted when the courts decided that broswers had to be seperate from the OS so that the user had a choice of broswer and MS did not have a monopoly.  Obviously the world has moved on from the 90's and the plan is coming back into play.
  • "Microsoft always maintained that the browser was a key component of the OS but had this vision disrupted when the courts decided that broswers had to be seperate from the OS so that the user had a choice of broswer and MS did not have a monopoly.  " That vision was disrupted because Microsoft engaged in illegal behavior vis-a-vis Netscape, not because of the courts. Microsoft paid out $750,000,000 in 2003 to Netscape for the harm its monopoly abuse caused to Netscape. The courts don't force you to hand over the better part of a BILLION US dollars because you're doing the "right thing". Microsoft correctly saw that control over access to the internet was incredibly lucrative. Unfortunately, it used illegal tactics to obtain control over the burdgeoning internet. Microsoft's vision was not a vision in which the USER benefitted. The vision was one in which MICROSOFT benefitted. We saw how that played out in the early 2000's when Microsoft had illegally vanquished Netscape Navigator. Internet Explorer languished because there was no competitor. Microsoft had such gaping security holes that they caused business and individuals to lose billions of dollars to theft and other security disasters (I'd love to see someone quantify the damage caused by Microsoft's monopolistic behavior... it would make for an interesting modern day case study of the damage of monopolies). On the desktop they are STILL in a virtual monopoly situation. Granted, Apple is a little stronger than it was but people with "clone" computers are still limited to Windows. Sure, GNU/Linux is around and an option for the technically sophisticated, but, for the average user it's not a realistic alternative. When Microsoft seeks to turn Windows 10 S into that Orwellian vision of a Microsoft-controlled internet it should scare us all. The last time Microsoft managed to gain control over the way most users access the internet it visited upon the world the scourge of ASP and all the other security loop holes that came with Internet Explorer 6. The reason I use Windows is because it runs desktop apps (i.e. Win32) and it runs them well. I haven't seen a shred of evidence that Windows 10-native apps are any good. As for how Microsoft PROHIBITS Chrome and FireFox (& Opera & ...) from being in the Windows Store and requires that the default browser in Windows 10 S use only Bing as the DEFAULT speaks volumes of their intent. Microsoft's concern is not to provide the best operating system for users. Microsoft's concern is to ensure that those users use MICROSOFT'S search engine. Neither Apple nor Google have done something so cynical in their proprietary OSes (iOS and ChromeOS). iOS and ChromeOS allow the user to change the default search engine. As for the argument that Apple requires browsers to use Safari's rendering engine and doesn't allow changes to the default browser--Apple's shtick is that it provides a consistent experience year-in-year-out. Pick up any iOS device and it provides you with a functional browser (Safari), no matter what. People use Windows precisely because you can install your own software and choose your own defaults. Windows 10 S violates that principle at its very core by explictly PROHIBITING competitors from bringing their software to Windows 10 S. I hope that Windows 10 S mode dies a painful death. It obviously failed miserably since Microsoft has since tried to save face by making it a "mode" rather than an edition of its operating system, but, Microsoft's anti-competitive, anti-user instincts are alive and well. Only a concerted push-back from end users can prevent Microsoft from taking a good operating system and destroying it.
  • Why not just use multiple desktops? Why would one like to have the apps restricted to a Windows instead of the desktop?
  • Yup that's exactly what I'm thinking. 
  • Author obviously never lived through the daysof 2or3 hundred malware apps on most old peoples computers. An unbelievable amount of popups locking everything down. Wont switch out of laziness?
  • Why do they insist on putting everything on Edge. Edge is too unstable for that. If Edge crashes (which happens wayyy too often), there goes all your other windows (work) with it.
  • It never crashes for me.  
  • So much for Live Tiles.  Goodbye forever.
  • Here's an idea, let's not release sets in RS5 (I mean sure, work on them, make sure they are perfect) and instead let's do a touch keyboard that fully works, Groove with high res artist art images, with consistent UI and no stuttering. You know, polished OS...
  • Groove is an app. How about they update it separately from the OS?
  • Edge is crap as a browser. Improve that first. Sets will likely not take off, it's Microsoft afterall.
  • So will I be able to open a chrome tab in a set?
  • One thing's for sure, I'm gonna disable this feature when it's released.  I personally am not a big fan of a bunch of tabs because seeing all that gives me a massive headache as I can handle <5 on a single window.  Whenever I have multiple tabs, I would start sorting it out by "topic" and separate them with multiple windows, and multiple virtual desktops (at least 4). And I need my windows tiled as I want to see everything I need.
  • My understanding of sets is it is a Microsoft Chrome OS version of Windows 😑
  • Wifi connectivity issue. Annoying. It's started with windows 10. Tried every version of windows. Including fast slow insider builds. Nothing helps.
  • I personally don't have issues with Edge, but I'm also browser agnostic. I'm right now mainly going between Chrome and Edge between work and my personal computers. The only major thing missing in Edge for me is Xmarks. I've been playing with Firefox again and I'm liking it so far, but I need enpass to update their extension so I can use it there. I personally am looking forward to trying sets, it seems potentially useful for me. I do think there is overlap with having multiple virtual desktops but not completely, so I disagree with people who think they're the same. For example, in my field of work I have to sometimes have several different applications open, including web browsers, when working on something for a specific client. Sometimes I have to jump among work with multiple different clients at the same time and what ends up happening is I might have a bunch of chrome tabs open with different tabs for different clients plus whatever other applications I need to use for each client. It becomes a pain switching among all those windows and keeping track of which windows/tabs were for which client. Sets will theoretically allow met to group each of my different clients' work together, even if they're different applications or folders, without having to fumble through every window finding the right one for the current client I'm working on. Now I could theoretically do that with multiple desktops too, but I don't think it's as efficient to switch quickly among different desktops. I also view multiple virtual desktops as more having completely different types of environments... Like I might have a desktop that's work focused and then another that's entertainment/gaming focused with that YouTube video from my favorite artist that I wanted to catch up on so I have it up in the mytube app ready to go. Basically so that the entertainment stuff doesn't distract me from the work I have to do.
  • If I can't alt-tab or some other key shortcut through tabs then I don't understand the point of this at all other than to make core windows operate more like the a chrome OS. moving the "tabs" from the taskbar to the top of the window is the most pointless change I can think of.
  • On the one hand, I can see how this would be extremely useful for some people who do essentially repetitive 'copy and paste' tasks in a workflow [example given, open up emails and then create invoices in your accounting package: or month-end-close processes] where there is a consistent arrangement of windows/apps at a given point in time. But if this is the case, I'm sure there are other ways to do it to improve productivity, yet people don't do it. Why? Because no matter how repetitive, eventually something else comes up and you have to do something 'out of the normal flow'. My company used to call this 'runners, repeaters and strangers'. You will get those 'stranger' tasks. Further, it can't always be tied to a moment in time. We multitask across different projects at the same time, how is the system going to know that website A is linked to project B and not project C? This somewhat reminds me of the approach MS tried to take a few years back, with making the 'document' the focus of what you did; it was a container for whatever apps worked on 'sections' of that document. So you'd have a bit of text that would 'edit' using Word, a table you would 'edit' using Excel. Problem was, this paradigm just never took off, because it didn't apply in that many cases. So in fact, and partly because of the smartphone era, we went back to primarily looking at everything in terms of the programs (apps). This seems to be somewhat of a return to the document (project? workstream?) focus. It'll work in some cases, but not others. Oh and BTW, the biggest non-UWP may indeed be Chrome, but there's a set of apps that are next: MS Office. Still not really a UWP, just wrapped in one. At my SaaS ERP company, we'd do work on the web interface using Edge, and eventually someone in our tech/support group would say 'yeah, you really shouldn't do that, switch to Chrome' and tell us of nightmares using Edge. Issues with Edge are real.
  • Dear Windows, it's been a blast knowing you, but, I fear that you're dropping hints it's time to move on to a new relationship. Since your future hinges on 'Sets' I guess Microsoft has decided that you are to be dumped for a dalliance as third wheel with iOS and Android. This saddens me because you used to provide me with an operating system that allows me to run the software that _I_ wanted to run in the way that I wanted to run the software. I suppose Microsoft has been dropping hints that you are to be retired for a while now so I only have myself to blame for my current predicament. First they release you as Windows 8 to much fanfare only for us to see your ego be crushed by wholesale rejection in the marketplace. Then Microsoft throws in the towel for your sister, Windows Phone, admitting that iOS and Android have captured the hearts, minds and wallets of nearly everyone under the age of 30. Then Microsoft shows itself to be a control freak, completely failing to understand why Apple sets Safari as the default browser in iOS. Apple makes sure that everyone has a predictable, though boring time by insisting everyone use Safari, but, Apple doesn't make everyone call the same person for help if they don't want to. Apple lets me CHOOSE who I want to have on speed dial. Instead, Microsoft goes all "Hannibal Lector" manipulative control freak on us, making us use Edge, and only Edge--even though Edge is not as good as nearly everyone else out there. And, under Windows 10 S (Mode) we can only call Bing for help, no matter what. And, guess what, not only do they make us talk to Bing, but, they stop us from talking to anyone else by barring other browsers from the Windows Store. I imagine the promise of Windows Sets will be yet another promise that Microsoft breaks to us. It'll only ever use Edge while most of us prefer to use Chrome or FireFox. Sadly, the writing is on the wall for you dear Windows. Your time on Earth is coming to a close. I've known you for over a quarter of a century and used you for a decade. I guess I should've listened to my dear Papa and stayed with Mac. They aren't getting into a new bed every weekend, chasing the latest fad and picking up lots of communicable diseases in the process. All the best, your loyal, though not masochistic user, Disappointed in Cyberland.
  • While I don't dislike the option to have tabbed Windows, I don't find it super productive either.  I like iPad Pros' ability to dock two apps together in split screen, and have the OS remember it as a docked pairing to be more productive.  For example, I often have Edge open for research, and MS Word open for a report I'm editing (Word docked to the left, Edge docked to the right), or I have Visual Studio docked to the left and Edge docked to the right.  Why not allow us to save these pairing into a single "set" that I can Pin to Start or Pin to Taskbar?  Tabs alone, ie. having one tab for Windows, and one for Edge, that I have to switch back and forth on, does nothing for me in terms of productivity. I suppose, having a "quick dock" button on the "set" that allows us to switch back and forth between split screen and tabs, that remembered the screen split ratio, now that would be super useful! Anyway, perhaps I'm wrong, but I'm not seeing a super useful feature here in tabs.  
  • Tabs are pointless if the only thing a "New Tab" can do is open edge. No option of opening the same app in a new tap, nor a way to merge multiple Windows into one.
  • They should probably rename 'Sets' to 'Workspaces'. Would make it a lot easier for people to understand what it does as such feature already exists in software as 'SQL Operations Studio', 'Visual Studio Code', 'PostMan' and others. I have colleagues who find workspaces extremely helpful so this might make the adoption a bit easier at launch time.