Windows team preps Windows 10 Insiders for future OneCore improvements

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Not much has been leaked about what new features users can expect from the next big update to Windows 10 or when it may even arrive, but several sources from within the Windows team have hinted at a renewed focus on mobile in upcoming build releases.

With that being said, the pace of feature development for Windows 10 on the PC side appears to be slowing, at least, for the time being. In an announcement post highlighted in the Windows 10 Feedback app, Windows 10 Insiders are warned that the Windows team will be focusing on under-the-hood refinements for now.

While the news may be sobering for Insiders who have been testing and playing with the Windows 10 Anniversary Update for months now, the bigger story nestled within the announcement was the detail of OneCore refactoring in upcoming Redstone 2 development branch builds. The Windows team appears set to hammer out and optimize its One OS engineering a bit more in the coming months.

cumulative update KB3176495
cumulative update KB3176495

Along with further fixing Windows 10’s plumbing, Insider are also being warned of a similar shift back to a staggered roll out of builds that more resemble last year’s Insider program experience. For those new to the Insider program, leading up to the July 2015 release of Windows 10, preview participants for both mobile and PC underwent a very staggered release cycle of builds that had, at one point, offered two or three PC updates to every one mobile version.

The switch back to staggered releases may not be as lengthy an in-between process as it previously was in 2015 with the Windows team explaining that Mobile preview builds should start hitting devices once again in a few weeks.

Either way, parse the Windows team’s words for yourself if you like:

We are now getting ready to start releasing new builds from our Development Branch to Windows Insiders in the Fast ring again. Just like we did after the release of the Windows 10 November Update – we will start off by releasing PC builds from our Development Branch first and then start releasing Mobile builds a few weeks after.

With the new builds we release from our Development Branch, you won’t see any big noticeable changes or new features just yet. Just like just like we did after the release of the November Update, we are focusing on making some structural improvements to OneCore. If you recall – OneCore is the shared core of Windows across PC, tablet, phone, IoT, Hololens and Xbox. It is essentially the heart of Windows.

We’re doing some code refactoring and other engineering work to make sure OneCore is optimally structured for teams to start checking in new features and improvements in a few months. As a result, these builds may include more bugs and other issues that could be slightly more painful for some people to live with. If this makes you uncomfortable, you can change your ring by going to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Insider Program and moving to the Slow or Release Preview rings for more stable builds.”

It is interesting to see a return to staggered roll outs even as Windows spokespeople have pointed to Redstone 2 being a more mobile-focused update cycle. Perhaps, the under-the-hood improvements coming down the pipe for Redstone 2 are just paving the way for a ramp up of mobile features later this year and early next.