Have you prepared your PC for the next major update for Windows 10? If not, you should consider taking some time as soon as possible to back up any critical data and get your files in order. That's because the April 2018 Update (otherwise known as Redstone 4 and previously referred to as the Spring Creators Update) is being pushed out to Windows 10 PCs starting later today, and perhaps already, depending on when you read this.
Despite the mundane nomenclature, the April 2018 Update is another major upgrade to Windows 10. Instead of releasing new versions of Windows every few years, Microsoft switched to a Windows-as-a-service (WaaS) model with Windows 10, and has committed to rolling out two major upgrades every year, in between which it serves up monthly security updates. The April 2018 Update is the fourth major update, preceded by the Fall Creators Update (Redstone 3), Creators Update (Redstone 2), and Anniversary Update (Redstone 1).
One of the things being introduced in the April 2018 Update is a new Timeline feature. Timeline is part of Windows 10's Task View and shows users a history of activities they've performed. Part of what's neat about Timeline is that it lets you see and synchronize running applications various devices, including Windows 10 systems, Android devices, and iOS devices.
"With Timeline, your Windows 10 PC lets you go back in time up to 30 days to find your stuff, whether you were working on it earlier today, last week, or a few weeks ago. Because much of our activity is on the go, you can even pick up what you were doing if signed into your Microsoft account while using Microsoft Edge or Office 365 on your iOS or Android device when you return to your Windows 10 PC," Microsoft explains.
The April 2018 Update also aims to keep users more productive through a new Focus Assist feature. What this does is essentially mute and hide notifications and emails for a period of time. You can toggle the feature on and off in the Action Center, or configure a schedule so that it turns back on automatically after, say, a meeting or conference call. This way you're not distracted by a social media alert or anything else that would send you down an unproductive Internet rabbit hole.
Other features include improvements to Microsoft's Edge browse, a fresh coat of paint as Microsoft continues to work on its Material Design language, a Near Share feature that lets you transfer and share files between nearby devices, a retooled Game Bar, and on-demand Bluetooth pairing, to name just a few things coming to Windows 10.