If you’re a Windows 10 user, there is probably nothing more annoying than the regular message you receive that your computer needs to be updated. While updates are a part of our digital lives, Microsoft’s bi-annual updates tend to be quite big and disruptive. They can cause a lot of frustrations with users and especially organisations who are looking to stay up to date.
Microsoft has announced a change to this approach and has started testing smaller feature updates, called the Windows Feature Experience Pack, for Windows 10 through selected beta testers. The idea behind these smaller releases is to introduce newer features to users more slowly, while also reducing the risk, given that there are fewer changes in any particular update. As Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc explains:
By testing this process first with Windows Insiders, we hope to expand the scope and the frequency of releases in the future. Eventually, Windows Feature Experience Pack updates will get folded into the already existing servicing process for Windows 10 and delivered to customers that way through Windows Update.
The first feature pack released to beta testers this week reportedly includes the ability to use the built-in screen snipping app to paste screenshots directly into folders within the File Explorer as well as a split keyboard mode for 2-in-1 touch devices. There is no clear roadmap yet on what will be coming next. If Microsoft does officially roll out smaller updates, expect there to be an official monthly roadmap on what users can expect with each small release.
It’s an approach that makes a lot of sense from a user and risk perspective, but could also prove to be a frustration with big corporates who like to control their updates carefully and with more regular releases, may make things even more complicated.
Last Updated: December 4, 2020