Microsoft has just announced the release of Windows 10 20H1 build 18980, which finally brings the new Cortana beta application to all Insiders in Fast Ring. The new Cortana is now available worldwide and currently only supports English, but Microsoft plans to add more languages in the coming months.
This new Cortana beta application will be updated through the Microsoft Store, and brings a new conversation user interface that was previously sent in the iOS and Android versions of the digital assistant. Microsoft is also enabling support for the Windows Subsystem for Linux 2 (WSL2) for ARM64 devices in this compilation, and has also made the Optional Features section in the Configuration application available to all Fast Ring members.
You can read more details about the new features in build 18980 below:
An update on Cortana
In response to the comments, we are executing a plan to make it easier for all Windows customers to use Cortana . As a first step, starting with today's compilation, all Insiders in the world will see the Cortana icon and the new application. In a future update of the Cortana application, customers will have the option of using Cortana if they speak a compatible language, regardless of the display language of their operating system. The new Cortana application is currently compatible with English (United States), since Cortana is supported by the service, we can and will continue to add new languages in the coming months outside the limits of the operating system compilation updates. We hope to support the same set of regions and languages that we currently admit in retail for the launch of 20H1. We will share more details of our language implementation plans as you go along and appreciate your patience during this transition period.
Windows subsystem improvements for Linux (WSL)
In this compilation, we have added WSL2 support for ARM64 devices! We have also added the ability to configure the default user of your distribution using the file /etc/wsl.conf. This version also contains several bug fixes, including a long-standing problem for symbolic links inherited from Windows (for example, those in the user profile directory). For more information about the changes in this latest version of Insider Preview, see the WSL release notes.
Other updates for Insiders
Update of the improvements of the optional features configuration section
These changes are now available for all Insiders in Fast! Thanks to those who already tried it and shared their comments. If the experience is coming to you now, we can't wait to hear what you think! To quickly recap, among other things, we have added multiple selection, search and, in general, work done to make this section easier to use:
As usual, this new compilation also includes bug fixes and other improvements. In particular, Microsoft said it has turned MS Paint and WordPad into optional features, so you can easily uninstall them if you need to save some disk space. If you use the Ease of Access Settings, the company also noted that these settings no longer participate in the Synchronization of Settings feature. You can get more details about these changes and known issues in this compilation in our separate publication.
Additional reading: 20H1, build 18980, Cortana, Fast Ring, Windows 10, Windows Insider, Windows Subsystem for Linux, wsl2