Latest Windows 10 leak reveals Cortana, new Xbox app and tweaked taskbar

Sneak preview ahead of January 21 event

Cortana

A leaked Windows 10 build has given a glimpse of some of the consumer-focused features set to appear in Microsoft's upcoming OS.

As Windows blogger Paul Thurrott notes, Windows 10 Build 9901 is shaping up to be a packed release.

Cortana, Microsoft's Siri-like personal assistant, has been integrated into search, which is now available as a box embedded in the the Taskbar that lets you quickly search your PC and the web (through Bing) without having to click a button.

Microsoft has made the Taskbar a darkened, almost opaque version of the colour you choose on the Personalise screen, which appears to intensify Windows 10's 'flattened' effect. Additionally, it now uses a line under app icons to indicate open windows, rather than a shaded box around the icon.

Windows 10
Windows 10 is gradually taking shape

Game on

Other additions include a new Xbox app that replaces Xbox Games, a new full-screen button that's pinned to the title bar of Modern app windows, new Photos and Settings apps and five landscape-themed wallpapers.

Microsoft has also introduced a Settings app that may go on to replace the Windows Control panel and PC Settings in the final release.

The company released the enterprise-focused Windows 10 Technical Preview back in September that was geared toward keyboard and mouse users. It's due to hold an event on January 21 that will be used to show off the future of Windows, including the new OS's consumer-driven features in their entirety.

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