Will Microsoft Windows 10 Creators Update be Ready for a March 30 Release?

Windows 10 Creators Update preview build on Microsoft Insider Program

There are things going on in the world of desktops that point to Microsoft releasing the full, public version of the Windows 10 Creators Update on March 30 – but strangely, not on its own devices, but the Dell Canvas, which was showcased at CES 2017 earlier this month.

Dell Canvas is essentially an offshoot of its long-term project, Dell Smart Desk. Canvas is not a PC, but rather a hands-on touch monitor that can hook up to any Windows 10 PC. It is laid horizontally on the work surface, and can be angled up to about 10 degrees.

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The interesting part about all this is that Dell Canvas is essentially a tool for designers and other creative people, which means 3D will be a major component that it works with. Windows 10 Creators Update does come with some robust 3D functionality, but there’s still a lot of work to be done before it can be pushed as a stable OS version.

Now, Dell Canvas is slated for a March 30 launch, so that’s the first clue that Windows 10 Creators Update will be released the same day.

The second clue is that Surface Studio models (two entry-level variants) are only due to ship on March 31, the day after the Dell Canvas launches. Though orders and shipments have already begun for Surface Studio, there is evidence to suggest that a March 31 shipment start date could be linked to the release of Creators Update to the public.

Surface Studio to ship by March 31 with Windows 10 Creators Update out of the box

The third piece of evidence is an email from a Dell representative to PCWorld, which states that “Since the device isn’t available until 3/30—all of the features of the Creators Update will be available when Canvas ships.”

If that’s a genuine email from a key employee, that means Microsoft has already set a target date for releasing Windows 10 Creators Update, and that target date could well be what Dell indicates for Canvas – March 30, 2017.

Furthermore, our assumption is that two key products are also awaiting the Creators Update for their respective launches – Surface Phone, which is expected to run the full Windows 10, not the mobile version, and Surface Pro 5, which would make a much more attractive purchase option if it came with Windows 10 Creators Update out of the box.

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That means the pressure on Microsoft to release Creators Update is now coming from at least two directions. The first is Dell’s plans for the Canvas release; the second is Microsoft’s own need to push it out sooner rather than later so it’s own devices can boast the latest version of Windows when they’re shipped.

As such, March 30 looks like a legitimate launch date for Windows 10 Creators Update. As of this week Microsoft has said it will roll out several new features, including Game Mode and Beam. They’ve already worked out most of the mixed reality, 3D, enterprise security and other features, so gaming could be the last one in before they freeze the features and start working on bug-stomping in preparation for a public release.

At this point, Microsoft simply cannot afford to release a buggy piece of software. There were numerous problems when Windows 10 Anniversary Update first came out, and the Redmond giant won’t want a repeat of that.

For now, it’s a question of time pressure versus the need for Microsoft and Dell to have Windows 10 Creators Update ready for shipping by March 30.

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