May 1, 2018 9:00 am

Windows IoT accelerates the intelligent edge with the Windows 10 April 2018 Update

By / Partner Group Program Manager, Windows 10 IoT

Windows 10 IoT helps you learn more, and do more, with greater device capability at the edge.

Woman wearing glasses in a factory

Windows 10 IoT helps you learn more, and do more, with greater device capability at the edge.

Our partners are continuing to create exciting and innovative IoT solutions. As we work with them, we’re constantly thinking about ways to make it easier to build devices with Windows IoT. With our latest major release – the Windows 10 April 2018 Update – we have added features to make developing, deploying, and managing these IoT solutions faster using Windows 10 IoT Core and Enterprise.

Streamline your development with Windows 10 IoT Core

The developer experience for Windows 10 IoT Core begins with the Windows Dev Center and continues with our Visual Studio tools. With the April 2018 update, we’ve improved both of these and added new features to make edge devices even more powerful.

  • We’ve added a Community section to the Windows IoT hub on Windows Dev Center, making it the go-to destination for all community-related resources, videos, online courses, in-person training, message forums, and more. This hub links our community with the help and resources they need to get answers, connect with others, and learn about Windows 10 IoT Core.
  • When writing unit tests for a project in Visual Studio 2017 which targets Windows 10 IoT Core, developers can now execute those unit tests remotely on the device directly from Visual Studio instead of having to deploy tests to the device and run them manually.
  • In recent releases. we’ve made significant investments in AI and Machine Learning across Windows and Azure. Developers looking to infuse AI into their applications and devices can leverage the capabilities in the Windows AI Platform to create more intelligent devices and build deeper connections with customers.
  • OEMs looking to bring a voice-enabled device to market quickly can integrate Cortana support into their device using the Cortana Devices SDK [Preview]. With the SDK, developers can access Cortana’s rich set of capabilities, bring conversational voice interaction to their device, and deliver a product that’s always getting better.
  • OEMs can perform remote configuration and management of devices at scale using Azure IoT Device Management. This new sample implementation combines a local client, cloud service, and management portal, enabling IoT operators to perform device management at cloud scale. Unlike competing platforms, this solution leverages the rich set of CSPs available on the Windows platform to power actions such as desired configuration, firmware update, and factory reset remotely from the cloud.
  • Console-based applications are especially important for running jobs and background processes on headless IoT devices. With this release, you can write UWP console apps that run in a console host, such as a command console or PowerShell. UWP console apps can also use Win32 APIs available to UWP apps and can be published and updated through the Microsoft Store.
  • Miracast allows a device to cast its display to a remote receiving device. We’ve added a new Miracast feature package for IoT Core along with a set of casting APIs to enable a device to act as a Miracast transmitter or receiver. We’ve also added support for the Bluetooth A2DP-SRC profile which allows a device to act as an audio source for Bluetooth streaming, including remote control capabilities over Bluetooth using the AVRCP profile.
  • One of our most popular Qualcomm boards, the DragonBoard 410c, has become far easier to flash with this release. Using the latest version of the Windows 10 IoT Core Dashboard, simply connect the board, put it into flash mode, and flash the device directly from the dashboard.
  • For finding and connecting to WiFi networks, we’ve updated the WiFi Connector sample to be on par with the netcmd command which was previously deprecated. This sample uses the WiFiAdapter APIs to manage wireless network connections and adapters.
  • Producing a global-ready device requires supporting diverse geographical regions, including differences in time zones. We have new time-related APIs for automatically setting the system clock to the local time and time zone based on device location, enabling OEMs to create a more streamlined out of box experience. We also have new language APIs for setting the preferred user language, region, default speech language, and default voice.

Unlock the full power of Windows for IoT solutions

With Windows 10 IoT Enterprise, device makers can leverage all the features of Windows 10 to create dedicated devices such as kiosks. We have many features to lock down devices and we’ve incorporated feedback to improve the experience of device makers and end users.

  • In previous releases, we’ve simplified the configuration and management of kiosk devices using Assigned Access by investing in scenarios such as allowing a kiosk to run a single app or creating a kiosk that runs multiple apps. We’ve improved the experience in this release by adding support for multiple screens for digital signage use cases. We’ve also added the ability to configure and run Shell Launcher in addition to existing UWP Store apps.
  • We’ve created monitoring of kiosk health for Assigned Access to enable IT pros to query deployed kiosks for their most recent health status. Devices with health monitoring enabled can be configured to proactively push alerts to the MDM server. We monitor 3 app states: app is running, app is not found, and app activation failed. We’ve also built logic to restart the app automatically for up to 3 crashes. When an app crashes, logs can be sent back to the alerts portal for further analysis.
  • When setting up a restricted device, IT pros can use Assigned Access to restrict a select user account to access a single Windows app. One of the most requested features for Assigned Access is to allow the same restricted experience for multiple users. In this release, we’ve added support for assigning user groups to Assigned Access. Now IT pros can target the restricted experience to a group of users instead of a single user using a local group, AD group, or AAD group.

Learn more and start building today

We’re committed to enhancing our platform with each update. To learn more about how to build IoT solutions using Windows 10 IoT and get more details about the Windows 10 April 2018 Update for IoT, please visit us at windowsondevices.com.

Updated May 1, 2018 10:36 am