Microsoft skips way, way ahead in new Windows 10 build

In a world largely powered by Windows 10 1803, it's a bit surreal to be talking about Windows 10 technology due in 2020.

Credit: Microsoft

With Microsoft’s latest “19H1” feature release of Windows 10 nearing completion, the company has opted to “skip ahead” and release builds of subsequent feature releases to testers. What’s totally unexpected is that the “20H1” build—not due for another year—will be among those releases.

Windows 10 Build 1836 (which will eventually be released under 20H1) doesn’t have any noteworthy features; it’s mainly a collection of bugfixes and tweaks to existing features, such as a “tamper protection” setting that prevents bad actors from messing with your security settings. Known issues, such as a “green screen of death” when launching games with anti-cheat software, means that this is really a developer-only build.

What’s interesting though, is the vast diversity in current Windows 10 development. Many PCs are still running Windows 10 version 1803, from March 2018, after which Microsoft adopted a go-slow approach to Windows 10 version 1809, also known as the October 2018 Update. The vast majority of Microsoft’s Windows 10 Insiders are testing version 19H1, also known as the Windows 10 April 2019 Update. And as for the Windows 10 19H2 release: It’s due “later this spring,” Microsoft said in a blog post.

Here’s how Microsoft explains it all: “These [new] builds are from the 20H1 development branch. Some things we are working on in 20H1 require a longer lead time. We will begin releasing 19H2 bits to Insiders later this spring after we get 19H1 nearly finished and ready; once 19H1 is ‘nearly finished and ready’ we’ll also use the Release Preview ring for previews of drivers and quality updates on 19H1.”

What this means to you: If you’re reading the tea leaves for an ETA on Windows 10 19H1, Microsoft is saying you’ll know it’s nearly completed when 19H2 builds begin to be released. While it’s nice to see Microsoft draw back the curtain, giving us a glimpse of what’s coming, it’s a bit surreal to be talking about next year’s Windows 10 builds when a substantial chunk of the computing world is using an OS from about a year ago.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Mark Hachman

Mark Hachman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers


This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang


It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries


As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr


The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?