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Windows 10, the pre-review: Six things build 10240 reveals about the new OS

Mark Hachman | July 20, 2015
Windows 10's official birthday is July 29, but we couldn't wait that long to unwrap the present. Build 10240, released Wednesday, is just a few buffs and polishes away from the final version, according to Microsoft. While we work on our full review, we can already provide you with the highlights.

6. Windows Hello

Walk up, look in, log in. Done. 

Basically no one has a PC equipped with the depth cameras needed to enable Windows Hello. I had to borrow a Microsoft demo machine. But boy, Hello is terrific. You simply "train" the machine by letting the PC camera look at you for a moment or two. Thereafter, when you sit down at your PC, it recognizes you and logs you in--no effort required. And if you share that PC with others in your family, it will recognize them, too, automatically logging them in and picking up where they left off. This could be a huge win for Microsoft. When we all have the hardware. 

So what's the verdict?

No, we're not giving that away just yet. But here's what I can tell you: As a vision, the scope of Microsoft's ambition for Windows 10 is breathtaking. What we plan to review for July 29 is simply one facet of it. Windows 10 is an ecosystem, spanning the PC, tablet, phone, HoloLens, and Xbox One. 

I have some concerns that it's trying to do too much. I also worry that aesthetics and latent bugs will hobble Windows 10. But as I craft my review, there's no denying that Windows 10 feels like a tribute to the best of Windows 7 and Windows 8, and it moves the ecosystem forward.  

We'll tell you what we really think of Windows 10 a little later. But for right now, let's start the conversation: What's your (nearly final) verdict, and--more importantly--what do you think will be most important to evaluate once the RTM build is finally released?


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