Well, the big day is here, folks. Relatively speaking. Microsoft have just released the newest refresh for its latest operating system, and you can now download Windows 8.1 August Update.
In terms of features, it does not bring all that much to the table. At least, nowhere near what some credible reports were pointing out earlier this year — options like the ability run Metro apps on the desktop in their own windows, or the returning Start Menu.
But it does signify an important change for Redmond, and how future updates to the Windows platform might now arrive. Hopefully, these incremental updates add up to a sizable improvement for the company’s flagship operating system.
According to Microsoft, this is what is included in this new release:
Precision touchpad improvements – three new end-user settings have been added: Leave touch pad on when a mouse is connected; allow right-clicks on the touchpad; double-tap and drag.
Miracast Receive – exposes a set of Wi-Fi direct APIs for Independent Hardware Vendor (IHV) drivers or OEM drivers to develop Windows 32-bit applications that run on all supported x86-based or x64-based versions of Windows 8.1, enabling the computer as a Miracast receiver.
Minimizing login prompts for SharePoint Online – reduces the number of prompts with federated use in accessing SharePoint Online sites. If you select the “Keep me signed in” check box when you log on for the first time, you will not see prompts for successive access to that SharePoint Online site.
The update is currently only available via direct download links from Microsoft servers, but it should show up on Windows Update anytime now.