Microsoft is ready to kick off Microsoft Build 2017, developer s conference in a couple of days from May 10 to May 12 in Seattle at 8AM (8.30PM IST). This year, the focus will be on Cloud Edge computing or Fog Computing, artificial intelligence, Windows 10, and more. Build 2017 is expected to take Satya Nadella s cloud-first, mobile-first philosophy further. The Build conference this year promises to bring a host of much-talked about but yet to be seen features to developers. Unlike previous years, there have hardly been leaks keeping the schedule and the details under wraps till the last minute. However, from the few details floated around, here s what we can expect from Microsoft Build 2017: Also Read - Microsoft to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation even after Activision acquisitionAlso Read - Biggest acquisitions made in the gaming industry: Microsoft-Activision Blizzard, Tencent-Supercell, and more
Universal Windows Platform
Microsoft announced Universal Windows Platform (UWP) in February this year and UWP lets developers create one single app compatible across multiple platforms like smartphones, tablets, PCs and gaming consoles. The platform will be made compatible with every device running Windows 10. UWP will tweak the API to let developers create one common code for apps irrespective of the device. The apps will self tweak to be best suited to the device in question.
One major area Microsoft will focus on is UWP Games as they have been taking on major gaming players with Windows Store. In the past, Microsoft has let developers create simple UWP games using DirectX and C++. 2017 Build conference is expected to explore UWP gaming in depth.
Redstone 3 and Project Neon
Redstone 3 is the next major update to Windows 10 expected to be announced at Build 2017. There are not many details known about Redstone 3. Windows Neon, the latest Windows 10 design language will also be unveiled as per reports.
One of the biggest changes to Windows 10 Redstone 3 will bring is the social feature, My People. My People will let Windows 10 users pin contacts directly to the taskbar and share files and documents with a single click. Project Neon is expected to make Windows 10 smoother and more fluid. The new design language will go hand in hand with Redstone 3.
Invoke Cortana Speaker
With Google Home, Amazon Echo and even Facebook Jarvis being complete home systems based on Artificial Intelligence, Microsoft is expected to unveil a new speaker Invoke based on Cortana, the inhouse AI. Microsoft has tied up with Harman and even shared a teaser about the upcoming personal assistant speaker a few months back. Looks like the Harman-made Cortana powered speaker will finally be unveiled at Build 2017.
The cylindrical speaker will come with the ability to make calls over Skype, apart from providing 360 degree sound. Further details regarding the price, availability, specifications and form will be shared at Build 2017.
Bots were the focus of Build 2016 and Microsoft is expected to announce further chatbots based on artificial intelligence. While bots based on AI are not new, the ones showcased previously by Microsoft have been very basic. The bots might too come integrated with Cortana for better performance. Microsoft might also unveil further features based on bots in Windows as well as applications like Skype.
The Microsoft Surface phone has been rumored for long, and though there have been no hints at Microsoft launching a new Windows device, this year could be different. Surface phone might be one of the best platforms to showcase the new software tweaks Microsoft is bringing to Windows and also the features expected to be unveiled at Build 2017. ALSO READ: Microsoft makes Edge browser more secure with Windows Defender Application Guard
With virtual reality being a major focus, HoloLens might get newer features and upgrades. HoloLens takes on Google Glass and Oculus Rift. Where Glass failed spectacularly, Microsoft might tweak the HoloLens platform to provide a more comfortable device. So far, the gestures HoloLens is known to support are pinch to zoom and there has been no word on commercial availability. Build 2017 might see a much-expected demo of HoloLens and also news of the device availability.
A new, secured Edge Browser, lighter and more comfortable for business is also on the charts. Windows Defender Application Guard, announced last year will perhaps see detailed testing at the conference. Microsoft is making major changes to the Edge browser in terms of security and ease of use, and Build 10 might see the new version.
Microsoft s cloud computing platform Azure will be one of the highlights of the conference. Microsoft will talk about cloud computing in details, laying out the future pathways for the platform. Apart from cloud computing, edge computing or data focused computing for cloud platforms is also expected to be discussed during the conference.