Even though the Anniversary Update isn't a whole new OS in itself, it brings in several features to make your Windows 10 device more secure, easier to use and more productive than before. These upgrades include added security protection, Windows Information Protection, Windows Ink, a more friendly Cortana, more power-efficient Edge browser, the new Xbox Play Anywhere programme and added functionality for students.
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In terms of security, Windows Defender can now automatically schedule periodic scans of your PCs and will show you notifications and summaries of freshly completed scans. You will also be able to use Windows Hello to sign in to websites on the Edge browser as well as Windows apps on your PC. For enterprise users, the new Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection will check networks constantly for malicious attacks and will neutralise them whenever they are found out. Enterprise users will also be able to use Windows Information Protection to prevent data loss through accidental data leaks.
With the Anniversary Update, Microsoft has also introduced Windows Ink, a feature which will allow you to make notes on your device display, make a sketch and draw routes on Maps with your pen.
Once your device gets the Anniversary Update, you will be able to access Cortana even when the screen is locked and ask it to answer questions, play music and set reminders easily. Cortana will also remember things for you which you recently did and will let you add photos to make your reminders visual.
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Thanks to the new update, the Edge browser is now more power-efficient and will use fewer CPU cycles, consume less memory and lessen the impact of background activity on battery life. Your Windows Store will soon feature extensions like Pinterest’s “Pin It Button,” Amazon Assistant, AdBlock, Adblock Plus and LastPass. Edge will also feature additional visual context, will preserve text contrast, improve form entries and will be compatible with the latest HTML standards.
Microsoft is also introducing the Xbox Play Anywhere program which will enable both Xbox One and Windows PCs to share game progress, achievements and saves to let you play Xbox games on any platform without having to start over. There will also be a unified Windows and Xbox store to let you find Xbox games, game and app bundles and make pre-orders faster.
The rollout of Windows 10 Anniversary update is taking place as we speak and if your Windows 10 PC or laptop is connected to the internet, it will download automatically without any need of manual intervention. However, if you love installing updates yourself, just visit your device settings, click on Updates & Security, then on Windows Update and then on Check for Updates. The Anniversary Update will show up as 10 version 1607 and if it's there, you can initiate the installation process. You can also get an ISO file of the Anniversary Update by visiting the support page on Microsoft.com.