Microsoft is bringing Window’s 11’s slimmed-down updates to Windows 10, shedding megabytes for quicker upgrades

Windows 10’s monthly updates will get a lot smaller, and therefore quicker to download and install, thanks to a feature that first debuted in Windows 11. Users with eligible devices can expect a decrease in update since the April 9, 2024 update which was 830 MB to around 630 MB with the latest update, released on April 23, 2024. 

The change was announced by Microsoft in a Windows blog post, writing that Windows 10 users will be getting a significant efficiency boost. Monthly Windows updates are typical for Windows 10 and Windows 11, and having to download bulky updates can be annoying and time consuming, especially for people with slower (or metered) internet connections. 

You can read more about what the shrunk-down update, KB5036979, will bring on Microsoft’s Support blog. Some of the developments that this update brings include account-related notifications (such as account activities, data backups, subscription management, and security settings) across the Start menu and Settings, an updated Widgets lock screen, a fix for a Bluetooth-related issue affecting certain wireless earbuds, an improved and more reliable Windows Search, as well as other quality-of-life updates. 

Woman sitting at a table in a modern corporate office, working at a laptop

(Image credit: Shutterstock/Gorodenkoff)

Improved Windows 10 updates ahead

Microsoft explains that until now, Windows 11 cumulative updates were more efficiently packaged than those for Windows 10. This has now changed, with a reduction in the size of the monthly latest cumulative update (LCU) package.

If your device is running Windows 10, make sure you have done the following to make sure you’re ready for these new updates:

  1. Check if you’ve updated your system since the Windows 10 July 23, 2023 update (KB5028244).
  2. If you haven’t, download and install Servicing Stack Update (SSU) KB5031539
  3. Once the above step is finished, download and install a quality update from April 2023 or later. 

It’s good to see that Windows 10 users are still getting quality updates and that Microsoft is making adjustments to make them easier to install, especially as we approach Windows 10’s End-of-Life date on October 14, 2025. While I’m sure Windows 10 users appreciate that they’re still getting improved functionality, it remains sensible to prepare to update to Windows 11 (or whatever the next iteration of Windows is called which we expect to learn about soon). 


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WhatsApp launches overdue formatting features, bringing order to chaotic texts

WhatsApp is releasing several new formatting tools to help you manage those long walls of text in group chats.

Triggering one of the new text formats requires you to enter a certain punctuation mark, followed by a space, and then the words themselves. Hyphens let you create a bullet list. A numeral with a period right after establishes a numbered list. Users can even make block quotes by first hitting the Greater Than arrow on the keyboard and then adding a space. To make inline code, you’ll have to press the accent symbol (which is found below the Esc key on most keyboards) followed by a single space. If done correctly, the messages you enter will be reformatted to your specifications. Otherwise, you’ll just see a bunch of random punctuations.

In total, users now have eight different ways to spruce up their conversations on the platform counting the likes of bold, italic, strikethrough, and monospace from years prior.

WhatsApp's new formatting tools

(Image credit: Future)

Finer details

Meta announced the update on social media and via WhatsApp notification; however, they neglected to mention some of the finer details. Not only are the features present in one-on-one chat rooms but also on the platform’s Channels, according to TechCrunch. The tools are available on WhatsApp for Android, iOS, Mac, and web browsers. Do keep in mind the patch is still rolling out so there’s a chance you may not have it on your mobile device. We didn’t get it on our Android, but luckily, it's currently live on the web version.

If you look closely, you’ll notice that we didn’t mention the Windows desktop app. This is because, for whatever reason, the Windows version lacks these features. It’s a rather strange omission especially when you consider the fact that this update has been in the works since August 2023. You’d think Meta would’ve brought it over PC in that time. So we reached out to the company asking for information on a Windows release. We’ll let you know if we hear back.

While we have you, be sure to join TechRadar’s WhatsApp channel to receive news stories and our latest reviews right on your phone.

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Windows 11’s ‘February 2024 Moment’ update is bringing new AI and accessibility features – plus no more Bing blackmail (for some people)

The next major update for Windows 11 is expected to arrive at end of February, and what awaits users includes artificial intelligence (AI) tools for organising your desktop, being able to disable Bing in Windows Search (if you’re in the EU), the ability to uninstall Microsoft Edge (again, EU only), Notepad updates, and more. 

This Windows 11 update has been dubbed “Moment 5” and “February 2024 Moment” (the latter being the name that Microsoft uses internally).

While this update will deliver some new features and tweaks, this update is primarily aimed at making Windows 11 compliant with new legislation from the European Union, the Digital Markets Act (DMA). Mozilla recently published a report accusing Microsoft of using “dark patterns” and bad market competition practices with regard to browser choice, so at least in the EU, this situation will slightly improve. 

What Windows 11 users can look forward to and when

Some of the updates that are coming with Moment 5 update include improvements to Windows 365’s Cloud PC integration, built-in accessibility features in Windows 11, an option to remove news from the Widgets Board, and the capability to remove Bing from the Windows Search pane (if you're in the EU). These features are expected to be previewed in late February 2024 or the beginning of March 2024. 

This is all we know about Moment 5 at the moment, according to Windows Central, and we will continue to watch and report new information about the upcoming update as we have it. Going by the internal name given to the update, “February 2024 Moment,” it’s not expected to stretch into March, and Windows Central  suggests that users will be able to install this update as of February 27, 2024. 

You can try out this update out for yourself (if it’s available on the forecasted date) by doing the following: 

1. Go to your PC’s Settings app. 

2. In the left-hand menu, select Windows Update

3. In the resulting menu, click on the Check for updates button

This will prompt Windows to search for any freshly released available updates. If it finds them, it’ll automatically download and install them on your device. 

Windows 11 Update showing on laptop in an office

(Image credit: TechRadar)

EU-phoria for certain Windows 11 users

This update is good news for users in the EU, with them now being able to disable Bing in Windows Search and choose a different search provider in its place, and uninstall preinstalled apps like Microsoft Edge. It’s certainly a win for Windows 11 users in the EU and a cause for envy from the rest of us – they’re getting more choice and they’re gaining more control over their computers.

It’s not just Microsoft that’s being accused of anti-competitive practices. Mozilla and Google also recently called out Apple for not going far enough with its new rules and regulations that have come about as a result of the DMA, and, somewhat similarly to Microsoft, in engaging in poor browser market competition practices. 

Users have been complaining about Microsoft’s persistent and annoying efforts to try and get them to switch to its browser Edge, and at least for EU users, this will now hopefully end – or at least become less aggressive. The rest of us, however, will have to wait and hope for our governments to follow. 


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Don’t panic, iPhone users – Google Maps is still bringing Live Activities to your lock screen

Google announced around this time last year that it was working on the addition of Live Activities support to the Google Maps app for iPhone and iPads, and slated it for release later in 2023, but so far it still hasn’t been released. However, new assets found in the latest version in the app indicate that Google is still working on this feature, and the wait may soon be over.

The feature will display turn-by-turn directions on the Lock Screen and in the Dynamic Island of iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 15 series handsets, providing users with real-time ETAs, directions for driving, biking, walking, public transit, and more kinds of navigation. Users can look forward to all of that in easy-to-read live notifications without having to unlock their phones and opening the app. 

I wonder if this feature will also be present on iPhone 16 and iPhone 16 Pro models’ Dynamic Islands, and would assume this would become standard for future iPhone models. It would also be nice to see a similar feature for Android devices (Dynamic Islands is a feature that’s exclusive to modern iPhones). 

Young woman using smartphone in Sydney

(Image credit: Getty Images)

A sign to keep your hopes up

A contributor at MacRumors, Aaron Perris, looked into the app’s assets after its most recent update, and found signs that users can remain hopeful that Google hasn’t given up adding these features to Google Maps on iPhone, despite the delay. 

This is reassuring, as while the new features were still in development as of August of last year, after that there were no strong indications that Google was pushing forward with it until now. MacRumours says that this recent discovery suggests that we might see the new feature soon. 

Apple has also opened up the Live Activities API for third-party iPhone app developers in iOS 16.1’s release. Developers have since made some handy apps and added some useful support features to existing apps, like DoorDash and United Airlines, thanks to the Live Activities API.

As an Android device user, I’m pretty jealous – this sounds like an awesome feature that makes it easier to get up and go, and stay on the move. It will make commuting with the help of your iPhone safer and more convenient, as well. I understand why iPhone users might be getting antsy after such a long delay and limited communication from Google, but it’s worth it for the Google Maps team to get it right.


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New Tiny10 – the streamlined Windows 10 OS – could be your best bet for bringing an old PC back to life

Tiny10 came out with a new version back in June, and now it’s been considerably improved by the developer, so those looking for a lightweight spin on Windows 10 to put on an old PC might be more tempted to take the plunge.

You may recall that the improved version of Tiny10 released a couple of months back was the 64-bit (x64) variant, which offers numerous advantages in terms of better security and performance over the old 32-bit incarnation. (This means you should run it, providing you have a 64-bit CPU, which is most likely the case – we cover this in more detail here).

That was the first release of Tiny10 x64 and now the developer, NTDEV, has pushed out a major refresh (the 23H2 version) which applies a lot of fixing work and more besides (as Neowin spotted).

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We’re told that Tiny10 x64 23H2 fixes “lots of nagging issues” and the rebuild of the OS ensures that it has full compatibility with “most” Windows components, meaning you can add bits and pieces back in post-installation, if critical parts of Windows 10 that you really want are missing.

Analysis: Sizeable improvements to a Tiny OS

While Tiny10 is all about streamlining Windows 10 and cutting everything right back so it’ll run on very old hardware, it’s good to have the ability to, say, reintroduce Windows Media Player into the mix if you want to. (Previously, the app didn’t work with Tiny10 x64).

This refresh of Tiny10 has also stripped back the Windows 10 installation provided even more, removing some little-used features such as, for example, OCR (optical character recognition).

The end result should be a smoother-running OS, and a slightly more compact one, albeit you do have more scope for reintroducing key Windows components should you want to.

In theory, Tiny10 can work on an ancient PC with as little as 1GB of RAM (although the official requirement is 2GB) and 16GB of storage space. The caveat with the OS (and Tiny11, the equivalent streamlined spin on Windows 11) is that you are using a modified Windows installation (ISO) file, and you cannot be exactly sure of the contents of that file.

You may want to be cautious in that regard, then, but both Tiny operating systems have been used quite considerably at this point with no complaints. Still, as ever with software downloads from the wild, you proceed at your own risk.

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Mercedes-Benz is bringing ChatGPT into cars for the first time

Luxury car brand Mercedes-Benz is outfitting its MBUX Voice Assistant with ChatGPT as part of a new US-only beta program. Joining the beta will allow drivers of over 900,000 “vehicles equipped with MBUX [to hold] “more dynamic” conversations with the onboard AI.

In the official announcement post, the company states it's seeking to improve its voice assistant beyond “predefined tasks and responses”. ChatGPT’s own large language model would “greatly improve [MBUX’s] natural language understanding [to] expand the topics to which it can respond.” So not only will customers be able to give voice commands, but they can also ask the AI for detailed information about their destination or suggestions for a new dinner recipe. 

ChatGPT in a Mercedes-Benz car

(Image credit: Mercedes-Benz)


To make the program possible, Mercedes is incorporating Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service in the rollout, ensuring, according to the auto manufacturer, “enterprise-grade security, privacy, and reliability”. Conversation data will be collected and then stored in the Mercedes-Benz Intelligent Cloud where it will be “anonymized and analyzed.” All IT processes will be controlled by the company as it promises to protect “all customer data from… misuse.” Microsoft won’t have any access.

If you want to see it in action before installation, tech news site Electrek recently published a couple of videos showing off the upgraded MBUX. It utilizes both the dashboard screen as well as its onboard voice to deliver answers. When asked for suggestions for the best local beaches, the AI displayed a text list of nearby locations before recommending activities like surfing. It can even tell jokes, although they’re pretty terrible.


The beta program starts June 16 in the United States only, as stated earlier. To get started, eligible customers must first say “Hey Mercedes, I want to join the beta program” as a command to MBUX. From there, it’ll teach you how to install the ChatGPT patch. It appears part of the onboarding process includes connecting a mobile device to the AI. A full list of vehicles supporting the beta is available on the company’s website. In total, there are over 25 models ranging from sedans to SUVs.

ChatGPT on the Mercedes-Benz app

(Image credit: Mercedes-Benz)

The beta program should last three months. After that time, it’ll go offline for an indeterminate amount of time. Mercedes will then take the data it collects to improve the AI for an eventual launch. It’s unknown if either the program or the final version will be available to other global regions or other languages besides English.

We reached out to Mercedes-Benz for more information on the launch. This story will be updated at a later time.

Having a generative AI at your beck and call giving you travel suggestions sounds pretty useful and could lead to a lot more fruitful sightseeing. To that end, we recommend checking TechRadar’s list of the best travel camera for 2023 before planning your next trip.

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Microsoft is bringing AI to Microsoft 365

In the wake of the world's most famous AI writer, ChatGPT, arriving on the Bing search engine, Microsoft has now unveiled its plans to use the same technology to improve workplace productivity, with the introduction of Microsoft 365 Copilot.

Copilot is powered by the same sort of prompt-based AI that drives ChatGPT – meaning that, with a written instruction less than a sentence long, Microsoft 365 can write entire emails and reports for you.

The announcements were made in a virtual press meeting hosted on March 16 via LinkedIn, by Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella and its Corporate Vice President Jared Spataro, on the same day TechRadar Pro reported that the company was leaning heavily into GPT-4, the latest version of OpenAI’s language model.

GPT-4 in the workplace

After enthusing about technological advancements in computing that have made human lives easier, such as video conferencing and collaboration tools, Nadella noted that, for the first time ever, AI is now at the center of a product, rather than simply powering it behind the scenes. In light of this, he also called for its responsible use.

However, he also said that the nature of work was going to change, to make our lives even easier.

Spataro then took over to present a segment about the need for these changes, and to “rediscover the soul of work”. He then introduced the new tool, explaining that it works by combining large language models (LLMs), individual’s data, and Microsoft 365 apps people use every day. 

He also claimed that because the productivity tool is built on the principles of security, compliance, privacy, and responsible AI, it’s safe and appropriate for enterprise use.

He conceded that sometimes Copilot wouldn’t get things right, but would still be “helpfully wrong” – giving users a head start on their task all the same. That’s some spin, but you can't argue with him.

GPT-4 as a time-saver

Another section presented by Sumit Chauhan, Corporate Vice President for the company, showed how Copilot allow users to add their own touches to copy, or even  ask Copilot to make it more concise. 

In addition, OneDrive can also draw from OneDrive photo albums to choose photos to import automatically.

Copilot can also save users time and “unleash creativity at work”, serving up content drafts in the style of previous documents, and draw from existing OneNote documents intelligently so that isn’t working from nothing, a well as potentially requiring less input from users. Linguistic generations can be made more visual, and vice versa.

However, Chauhan warned that reviews by a human are still required before, say, sending the output to clients, but still noted the time-saving possibilities.

Additionally, Copilot can analyze Excel spreadsheets for trends, condense them into brief breakdowns, and pressed for more information. It can even generate graphs from information in an instant.

When it comes to email, Copilot can highlight important messages, summarize threads, and even generate replies that can be made more concise or put into a different style by Copilot itself.

Copilot will allow users to follow meetings without actually being in attendance, by directing Copilot to make notes in their absence. This includes details on who said what, and recognizing why decisions were made, et cetera. All of this can be done during a meeting as well.

Copilot can also take data from, say, a sales material document, and provide it during a meeting with a client. It also works with Power Automate as well, to create automatic workflows that engage when something specific happens within a document or spreadsheet.

Business Chat

Akosua Boadi-Agyemang, Senior Marketing Manager for Microsoft, then discussed Business Chat – essentially a version of ChatGPT that works across meeting notes, Teams chats, and documents to provide a shared knowledge pool to give you the information you need in a matter of seconds, instead of hours.

Like the individual app integrations, Business Chat allows users to update generated content (such as SWOT analysis) manually to make them more accurate, or ask Business Chat to add new generations to the content, should Copilot miss anything.

The Copilot System

All of this is made possible by the Copilot System – a sophisticated processing engine that powers everything inside Microsoft 365 Copilot – and is “all accessible through natural language”. 

A process called “grounding” will modify a prompt after being written and before being sent to the LLM – making the process of “prompt engineering” even easier.

Copilot is monitored in real-time by experts, as Microsoft noted their concerns about security and wanting to prevent jailbreaks, where the software is used in unintended and perhaps nefarious ways. 

The tech giant was quick to point out that its LLMs and The Copilot System aren’t infallible, but that despite this, it has ways and means of protecting users and their data, and the Copilot software will continue to be refined.

Microsoft 365 Copilot's implications

So far, OpenAI’s GPT language models have mostly been good at threatening users, generating pasta recipes, or – more seriously – aiding with transcription.

As several people in the event chat were proclaiming afterwards, it's not so much that Microsoft 365 Copilot is a “game changer”, just that Microsoft has made a convincing argument that artificial intelligence is finally ready to take on meaningful use-cases at scale.

Details on the availability of Copilot were scarce, but it seems that, at launch at least, it will only be available for businesses. 

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GPT-4 is bringing a massive upgrade to ChatGPT

OpenAI has officially announced GPT-4 – the latest version of its incredibly popular large language model powering artificial intelligence (AI) chatbots (among other cool things).

If you’ve heard the hype about ChatGPT (perhaps at an incredibly trendy party or a work meeting), then you may have a passing familiarity with GPT-3 (and GPT-3.5, a more recent improved version). GPT is the acronym for Generative Pre-trained Transformer, a machine learning technology that uses neural networks to bounce around raw input information tidbits like ping pong balls and turn them into something comprehensible and convincing to human beings. OpenAI claims that GPT-4 is its “most advanced AI system” that has been “trained using human feedback, to produce even safer, more useful output in natural language and code.”

GPT-3 and GPT-3.5 are large language models (LLM), a type of machine learning model, from the AI research lab OpenAI and they are the technology that ChatGPT is built on. If you've been following recent developments in the AI chatbot arena, you probably haven’t missed the excitement about this technology and the explosive popularity of ChatGPT. Now, the successor to this technology, and possibly to ChatGPT itself, has been released.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? GPT-4 is the latest version of the large language model that’s used in popular AI chatbots
  • When is it out? It was officially announced March 14, 2023
  • How much is it? It’s free to try out, and there are subscription tiers as well

When will ChatGPT-4 be released?

GPT-4 was officially revealed on March 14, although it didn’t come as too much of a surprise, as Microsoft Germany CTO, Andreas Braun speaking at the AI in Focus – Digital Kickoff event, let slip that the release of GPT-4 was imminent. 

It had been previously speculated that GPT-4 would be multimodal, which Braun also confirmed. GPT-3 is already one of the most impressive natural language processing models (NLP models), models built with the aim of producing human-like speech, in history. 

GPT-4 will be the most ambitious NLP we have seen yet as it will be the largest language model in existence.

A man in a suit using a laptop with a projected display showing a mockup of the ChatGPT interface.

ChatGPT is about to get stronger. (Image credit: Shutterstock)

What is the difference between GPT-3 and GPT-4?

The type of input Chat GPT (iGPT-3 and GPT-3.5) processes is plain text, and the output it can produce is natural language text and code. GPT-4’s multimodality means that you may be able to enter different kinds of input – like video, sound (e.g speech), images, and text. Like its capabilities on the input end, these multimodal faculties will also possibly allow for the generation of output like video, audio, and other types of content. Inputting and outputting both text and visual content could provide a huge boost in the power and capability of AI chatbots relying on ChatGPT-4.

Furthermore, similar to how GPT-3.5 was an improvement on GPT-3’s chat abilities by being more fine-tuned for natural chat, the capability to process and output code, and to do traditional completion tasks, GPT-4 should be an improvement on GPT-3.5’s understanding.  One of GPT-3/GPT-3.5’s main strengths is that they are trained on an immense amount of text data sourced across the internet. 

Bing search and ChatGPT

(Image credit: Rokas Tenys via Shutterstock)

What can GPT-4 do?

GPT-4 is trained on a diverse spectrum of multimodal information. This means that it will, in theory, be able to understand and produce language that is more likely to be accurate and relevant to what is being asked of it. This will be another marked improvement in the GPT series to understand and interpret not just input data, but also the context within which it is put. Additionally, GPT-4 will have an increased capacity to perform multiple tasks at once.

OpenAI also claims that GPT-4 is 40% more likely to provide factual responses, which is encouraging to learn since companies like Microsoft plan to use GPT-4 in search engines and other tools we rely on for factual information. OpenAI has also said that it is 82% less like to respond to requests for ‘disallowed’ content.

Safety is a big feature with GPT-4, with OpenAI working for over six months to ensure it is safe. They did this through an improved monitoring framework, and by working with experts in a variety of sensitive fields, such as medicine and geopolitics, to ensure the replies it gives are accurate and safe.

These new features promise greater ability and range to do a wider variety of tasks, greater efficiency of processing resources, the ability to complete multiple tasks simultaneously, and the potential for greater accuracy, which is a concern among current AI-bot and search engine engineers.

How GPT-4 will be presented is yet to be confirmed as there is still a great deal that stands to be revealed by OpenAI. We do know, however, that Microsoft has exclusive rights to OpenAI’s GPT-3 language model technology and has already begun the full roll-out of its incorporation of ChatGPT into Bing. This leads many in the industry to predict that GPT-4 will also end up being embedded in Microsoft products (including Bing). 

We have already seen the extended and persistent waves caused by GPT-3/GPT-3.5 and ChatGPT in many areas of our lives, including but not limited to tech such as content creation, education, and commercial productivity and activity. When you add more dimensions to the type of input that can be both submitted and generated, it's hard to predict the scale of the next upheaval. 

The ethical discussions around AI-generated content have multiplied as quickly as the technology’s ability to generate content, and this development is no exception.

GPT-4 is far from perfect, as OpenAI admits. It still has limitations surrounding social biases – the company warns it could reflect harmful stereotypes, and it still has what the company calls 'hallucinations', where the model creates made-up information that is “incorrect but sounds plausible.”

Even so, it's an exciting milestone for GPT in particular and AI in general, and the pace at which GPT is evolving since its launch last year is incredibly impressive.

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Microsoft is bringing AI Bing and chat-powered searches to Windows 11

As expected, Microsoft is bringing the powerful and somewhat controversial AI-Enabled Bing to Windows 11, and putting it right inside your taskbar.

The update arrives today (February 28), but if you don't already have access to AI Bing (perhaps you're still on a waiting list) you won't see it.

For those that do have access, and are running at least Windows 11 version 22H2 on one of the best Windows PCs, they'll see the same OpenAI ChatGPT-enabled Bing chatbot at least a million people have been running for almost a month.

AI-Enabled Bing is designed to be like a search-engine copilot. You can use the new Bing in the standard search fashion, or in a more conversational mode, where you ask the chatbot anything, even a series of questions that stay in context and, when all goes well, help you to elicit better answers.

Now, that experience will live inside Windows 11's centered and quite popular search box in the taskbar.

While Microsoft, in the blog post announcing the update, points to some of the inspiring information discovery stories generated by the AI-powered Bing, the decision to introduce it on a platform used by millions of people is not without controversy.

Since its introduction at a surprise event a few weeks ago, users have pushed AI-enabled Bing to its limits. It's been accused of making stuff up, cheating at Tic-Tac-Toe, and basically going off the rails. Microsoft responded by putting some guardrails on the new technology, such as limiting interactions to five responses at a time.

None of that, though, has slowed Microsoft's expansion plans. Just last week, Microsoft unveiled the mobile version of AI-enabled Bing that includes voice interaction.

Microsoft is, in a way, hedging its bets here by introducing AI-enabled Bing to Windows 11 and not the much more widely-used Windows 10, which may be on well over one billion devices.

Even so, this is a significant expansion in AI-enabled Bing availability, and the roadmap is clear. This ChatGPT-powered search will eventually be a part of all Windows 11 installs, which means its learning could grow at an exponential rate. It might also mean that Microsoft encounters even more unforeseen chatbot challenges.

Windows 11 update with Phone Link for iOS

Windows 11 update with Phone Link for iOS (Image credit: Microsoft)

Along with the AI-enabled Bing Taskbar update, Microsoft is finally bringing Phone Link to iOS devices. 

For years, Microsoft has offered a direct Windows connection to the best Samsung phones through Phone Link, enabling browser hand-off, and the ability to send texts and other notifications from the phone to the Windows screen.

This Windows 11 update finally adds support for iPhones, allowing Windows users to view messages and notifications from their iPhones on their Windows 11 PCs and sync contacts. You'll even be able to manage phone calls through your PC. 

Unlike the Bing update, this one is still only available as a preview for Windows Insiders, a beta-release program that you can sign up for here. Just remember that running unreleased software comes with its share of risks, including data loss in the event of a system crash.

Windows 11 update with Quick Help

Windows 11 update with Quick Help (Image credit: Microsoft)

There are a bunch of other notable Windows 11 updates in today's full public release including:

• The ability to adjust Windows Studio Effects directly from the taskbar in Quick Settings.

• A slide-away taskbar when you use Windows 11 in tablet mode. A swipe up from the bottom of the screen will bring the taskbar back into view.

• The ability to open Quick Assist from the help menu to receive and deliver tech support. It will even let you switch between screen-share mode and full remote control of your or someone else's system (assuming you trust who you're working with).

• Finally, Microsoft is adding Screen Recording to its Snipping Tool, which has traditionally been used to capture screen images. We would love to see it add the ability to create GIFs from these screen caps, maybe in a future Windows 11 update.

As we mentioned earlier, this major Windows 11 update rolls out today (February 28) and while most of the updates will be available to everyone, the AI-enabled Bing will only show up if you're already part of the Bing preview program.

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Glass app trumps Instagram by bringing its photo-sharing network to iPad

Instagram's move away from its photographic core has left a spot open for enthusiast-friendly photo-sharing apps like Glass – and now that new contender has brought its glossy, magazine-like experience to iPad.

Glass 2.0 is now available for iPads running iPadOS 14.0 or later, although you'll still need to pay the monthly £4.49 / $ 4.99 or £24.99 / $ 29.99 annual subscription to access it. There's a two-week free trial to give you a taster, though.

As we discovered in our exclusive interview with the makers of Glass, this membership fee is partly a result of the developers' decision to forego venture capital investment, with the aim being to create a sustainable community.

Given what's happened to Instagram, and many other pretenders to its photographic throne, this seems a wise move – and the arrival of an iPad app in particular supports the idea of a photo-centric sharing space. 

The larger screen gives you a better view of painstakingly-crafted shots, and many photographers use iPads anyway as part of their in-the-field editing workflow thanks to apps like Lightroom. Strangely, Instagram has never launched a dedicated iPad app and, last year, said that one is unlikely to arrive anytime soon.

Since its launch six months ago, Glass has added new features including categories and 'appreciations' for liking photos, but there's no algorithm running behind it to organize your feed. Instead, you get the chronological feed that Instagram has hinted will be returning to its app in 2022.

The Glass team will also be launching a web-based version of its app, to rival the likes of Flickr, with a beta version expected to arrive in March or April.

Analysis: A pricey but polished Instagram alternative 

The Glass app on iPad

(Image credit: Glass)

Our early experience with the Glass iPad app is that it's a little buggy, with the app having a tendency to crash on our iPad Air. But we're sure these wrinkles will be ironed out and the app certainly has potential on the bigger screen of Apple's tablets.

Sadly, there's no Android version in the works just yet, with Glass' maker stating that its focus is currently on launching Glass for Web over the next few months. But if you're an iOS fan and photographer, the free trial is certainly worth a spin.

There is currently a gap between Instagram – which we've previously argued is broken for photographers – and veteran platforms like Flickr, which is big on community but lacks the polish of Glass.

There's no doubt the £4.49 / $ 4.99 monthly or £24.99 / $ 29.99 subscription fee is pretty high and could be off-putting for anyone who's bank balance is currently enduring death by a thousand subscriptions.

But the flip-side is that the ad-free Glass is being developed by a small team of photography enthusiasts who are keen to avoid the bloat and e-commerce traps that have lured Instagram away from its photographic heritage.

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