Microsoft released a new Windows 10 Mobile preview today. The new build for phones includes support for missed call notifications on your PC, the ability to send texts from your PC, and Skype integration, as well as improvements to Cortana, the Photo app, and Storage settings.
With this build on your phone, Cortana will now notify you on your PC (as long you have Windows 10 build 10565 or higher) when you miss a call. When that happens, you can reply to the person who called you with a text right from your PC. Cortana then makes sure that your phone sends the text on your behalf.
There is a small caveat: Because this requires Cortana, you need to be signed into the same Microsoft Account on both your phone and PC. If you have multiple PCs and don’t want to receive missed call notifications on one of those PCs, you can go to Cortana’s Notebook and toggle the “Missed call notifications” option. You can also disable the notification completely.
Even if you haven’t missed a call, you can still send a text from your PC at any time. To do so, fire up Cortana, type or speak “Text” and the name of a contact on your PC (just like you would on your phone), and Cortana will do the rest.
Speaking of Cortana, she can now help keep track of your leisure time, including sending movie and event reminders. Cortana can also tell you where to go and how to get there on time, including giving you an option to book and track an Uber ride. Just say “Book an Uber” and Cortana will get you a ride immediately. You can even add “to [airport name]” (and as long as Bing recognizes the airport and Uber is available), and a car will be on its way.
This build also adds the long-awaited Skype integration into the Messaging, Phone, and video universal Windows apps. The Messaging app has additionally gained support for animated GIFs and includes the ability to search your messages, while the Phone app now has the ability to search for contacts from Call History.
Improvements to Storage settings offer a common experience across your PC and phone. You can now install applications to expanded storage, such as an SD card or USB drive, on either your phone and PC.
Also, you can now save offline maps to an SD card. Microsoft notes that both of these storage additions were top requests made by its testers.
Last, but not least, the Photo app now lets you mark local photos on your phone as favorites and have them shuffle on the Live Tile. The viewer for zooming performance and file information has also been improved. If you press and hold a photo, you should also see additional context menus:
New features aside, this build also fixes the following issues:
- Notifications, such as new messages, can be received without first unlocking the device.
- Cortana’s background activity has been optimized for power usage.
- We have fixed some of the issues that were causing the Start screen to not load. Additionally, we have made some performance improvements to the Start screen.
- We have made performance improvements to Acton Center, including swipe to expand and dismiss notifications. Swiping to expand or dismiss notifications should happen more quickly.
- The alarm icon now appears on the Lock screen when an alarm is set in the Alarms & Clock app.
- The proximity sensor during calls is now behaving as expected on devices that may have previously failed to turn the screen off.
- App downloads in the Store were sometimes getting blocked by a service hanging in the background – this should be resolved and app downloads should be more consistent.
- The keyboard will switch languages less aggressively now.
- Tapping restart for “apply an update” will reboot the device immediately now.
Today’s update bumps the Windows 10 build number from 10549, made available to testers on October 14, to build 10572. Unlike Windows 10 for PCs, which launched on July 29, Windows 10 Mobile hasn’t been released yet — it’s behind in terms of features and polish compared to its PC counterpart.
Build 10572 has the following known issues:
- Visual Voicemail sync is broken on some devices. You may need to call your voicemail directly within the Phone app > Settings > Change more settings for Phone > Call Voicemail.
- Opening message threads within the Messaging app will crash on dual SIM phones if the second line’s Messaging tile is removed from the Start screen (even if only a single SIM is used). The second line’s Messaging app will also appear to be removed from the All apps list. To work around this issue, the second line messaging tile must be linked to the first line messaging tile by opening up the first line in the Messaging app then go to Settings > link tiles.
- On Dual SIM devices, unpinning the second line Phone tile from the Start screen will make the entry disappear from the All apps list. Rebooting the phone will cause the tile and application to both reappear.
- Photos cannot be selected for sharing through third party apps like Facebook, Facebook Messenger, Instagram Beta, WhatsApp etc.
- Some devices will get into a state where the Phone app will continually crash upon launch. Resetting the device will recover it from this state.
- Devices that have updated from Windows Phone 8 to Windows Phone 8.1 may lose the ability to connect to Wi-Fi on Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview builds or may fail to update to Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview builds all together. You can use the Windows Device Recovery Tool to first update your device to Windows Phone 8.1 and then upgrade to the latest Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview build.