Every October, Microsoft releases a major update to Windows that will (hopefully) fix the biggest bugs and errors, and bring new features to this OS-as-a-service product.
While there were quite a few issues with the 2018 2018 update 1808 that caused a two-month delay, it is now available through the regular update service.
If you’re running 1809 or just looking forward to it, here are some standout features you can look forward to in the latest version of Windows.
Finally, Dark Mode for Explorer!
Microsoft provided the Dark theme in a previous update, but unfortunately, Windows Explorer itself keeps its white background.
Dark mode and themes are pretty much everywhere these days. Not only do they make screens easier to read in the dark, they also reduce screen power consumption. Most importantly, they look pretty cool to boot.
Enabling Dark mode for Windows apps couldn’t be easier. Firstly Go to Settings – Personalization – Colors.
Now scroll to the bottom of the window.
Below Default application mode select Dark. Now Windows Explorer will have a dark background and your eyes will thank you.
Snip & Sketch Screen Capture Tool
Windows 10 has much better support for editing screenshots than previous versions. However, the tools available are a bit fragmented, and with the 1809 update, there is now one tool to rule (and replace) them all. The Snip and Sketch tool.
You can find this tool with all your other apps, or just type its name in the Start Menu search bar. With it, you can easily capture and edit screenshots with ease.
Your phone app for Android users
Like it or not, smartphones are now a part of most people’s daily lives. So Microsoft decided to integrate Android phones into Windows Desktop with a new app called Your phone.
There’s no indication when or if other phone operating systems will be fully supported, but if you have an Android smartphone, you can now send texts and view photos. There is also some limited iOS functionality. Specifically send web pages from your iPhone to Windows.
You can find the application among your other Windows applications. The fastest way to access is by searching your phone on your phone..
To link your phone just click “Begin” and follow the prompts. Afterward enter your number this.
Enter your number and click To send. You will receive a text with a link to the Companion app on your phone. Install it and then open it.
Now you just need to sign in with your Microsoft account to complete the link.
You are now ready to start sharing content between your phone and Windows desktop.
Start the Upgrade Search Menu
The search functions in the Start Menu have been significantly expanded. Now when you search for something, you will see several tabs to categorize the results. There are also more relevant web results, with shortcuts to downloading or installing an app.
The search itself is now much faster, appearing at the same time as the Start Menu appears.
Supercharged Clipboard, powered by the cloud
The humble Clipboard has also received a major overhaul. Now when you copy something to the Clipboard, there’s more you can do than just paste it somewhere.
For example, you can now stack your copied items by activating Clipboard History. If you press Windows + DRAW then you can view that history and select the item you want to paste.
You can also choose to sync clipboard data to the cloud and then to other devices.
Today’s Windows 10 is much more mature and refined than when it first came out. Despite a rough start, update 1809 has brought some really useful and welcome changes to the system. Enjoy!
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