Microsoft has released an updated preview build for the forthcoming Redstone update of Windows 10 Mobile, showcasing a new feature that will allow users to send and receive text messages from their phone on Windows 10 PC systems.
Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview Build 14327 is available now to testers on the Fast Ring of Microsoft's Windows Insider early access programme, and shows how the upcoming Redstone update for Windows 10 on smartphones is progressing ahead of an expected mid-year release.
The headline feature in Build 14327 is a preview of Messaging Everywhere, which is intended to allow users of Windows 10 Mobile handsets to send and receive text messages using a Windows 10 PC as well as on their phone.
Messaging Everywhere relies on having a Microsoft Account and signing in with this on all the devices in use. The company already uses this to synchronise details such as documents and settings across all the devices to which a user has access.
Using the feature requires checking the 'Send texts on all my Windows devices' option on the smartphone. Messages will then appear in the Messaging app on the PC, provided the user has also chosen which phone to send and receive messages from in that app.
Meanwhile, Microsoft has removed Skype integration from the Messaging app in this Windows 10 Mobile Build. This is apparently so that the firm can deliver this functionality through a single Skype Universal Windows Platform app. This has yet to be delivered, so users will have to download the existing Skype for Windows Phone app from the Windows Store.
Another area addressed is the Cortana personal assistant, which is now enabled for more languages on the mobile platform, including Spanish (Mexico), Portuguese (Brazil) and French (Canada).
The usual collection of bug fixes is provided in Build 14327, usually to address problems encountered in the last build, such as the device becoming unresponsive if the power button is used to lock/unlock it quickly, or tethering over Bluetooth failing to work if Bluetooth had not been turned on before.
Another problem Microsoft has fixed involved third-party messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger or WeChat failing to launch.
However, as is typically the case, there are known faults with this test build. Microsoft is currently investigating problems when downloading Language and Speech packs, for example.
Gabe Aul, corporate vice president for Microsoft's engineering systems team, explained on the Windows Experience blog that development builds are available only on a restricted range of devices.
"As we stated previously, only devices which are eligible to receive the Windows 10 Mobile upgrade will be able to get preview builds from the Development Branch," he said.
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