Despite Microsoft’s promise of a single operating system for all devices, the first Windows 10 preview builds have been for desktops and laptops only. However, the company has moved one step closer to its vision of a unified OS by releasing a version of Windows 10 that will work on a limited number of Lumia handsets.
HOW TO GET IT Want to try Windows 10 on your handset? First, you’ll need to join the Windows Insider Programme (insider.windows.com) and register your device. This will install the Windows Insider app on your phone, after which you can follow the prompts to install the new OS. If it all goes terribly wrong, you can always roll back your device to Windows Phone 8.1. Microsoft is giving Lumia owners an early taste of Windows 10 on their phones. Microsoft said most Lumia handsets will be upgradeable to Windows 10, but only a small number currently work with the Technical Preview, namely the Lumia 630,635,636,638,730 and 830. Treat this list with caution, however: we tried to install Windows 10 on the 830 without success. Higher-end handsets, such as the 930 and 1520, will eventually be supported. Programme manager Gabriel Aul warned that you may not want to use the new operating system on your main handset. “You will encounter bugs,’ he admitted, but added that this is to be expected given this is the “earliest publicly available preview” for Windows on phones. “You will likely feel like this first preview build for phones seems less complete’ or ‘earlier’ than the PC. That’s true-it is.’ Speech integration UK users won’t yet see Cortana in Windows 10, but you can still talk to your phone: Microsoft claims speech-to-text can now be used for most data fields. Updated apps Some apps have been updated, including the calculator and Photos, and Microsoft is working on a version of Outlook that works across all devices. Skype is built in, letting you use its messaging tool in SMS conversations. Improved settings This has seen a big upgrade, with many more “quick settings” for, say, adjusting brightness. It’s also simpler to respond to notifications, such as texts, directly.