Microsoft’s latest Windows 10 19H1 Insider Preview for the fast ring expands the availability of password-less sign-in and a revamped Windows Hello PIN reset from Windows 10 Home to all Windows 10 editions.
Microsoft rolled out its new password-less sign-in option to Windows 10 Home edition insiders in December with build 18305 and, with the new 18309 build, has now made it available to insiders on all editions. The 19H1 builds are expected to be available to all Windows 10 users in the first half of 2019.
With the new preview, users with a Microsoft account with a phone number can use an SMS code to sign in and set up an account, and from there use Windows Hello Face, fingerprint or a PIN to sign in.
Users who don’t already have a password-less phone number account can create one in the Word app on iOS or Android.
Microsoft has also expanded the availability of its streamlined Windows Hello PIN reset procedure, which can be tested by clicking the ‘I forgot my PIN’ link when signing in to Windows with a PIN.
The Narrator app that reads out text is also getting some improvements. Users no longer need to download language packs to add voices in other languages. This task can now be done by going to Narrator Settings and clicking ‘Add more voices’.
SEE: How we learned to talk to computers, and how they learned to answer back (cover story PDF)
Actions in Narrator Home such as QuickStart and settings are now buttons, while a new ‘Narrator + 5 twice’ command renders current character phonetics.
There are also improvement in the reading of controls while navigating and editing, table reading in PowerPoint, reading and navigating with Chrome, and interacting with Chrome menus.
There’s also a long list of bug fixes, including one for the new Windows Sandbox that was introduced in build 18305. The feature allows users to run untrusted executables in a sandbox without risking infecting the host.
For some users, Windows Sandbox and Windows Defender Application Guard were failing to launch in preview build 18305, but that should be fixed in this latest build.
Previous and related coverage
Windows 10: Now it’s tap or look to sign in to Outlook, Office 365, OneDrive, Skype
Microsoft takes another big step in its mission for password-less sign-in for Windows 10.
Microsoft plans new 4K webcams to bring facial recognition to all Windows 10 devices, says report
Microsoft will reportedly release its own webcams in 2019 to bring Windows Hello facial recognition to all Windows 10 devices.
Microsoft’s new Windows 10 19H1 test build paves the way for new Sandbox feature
Windows 10 19H1 Build 18305 adds support for a new sandbox feature for isolating potentially suspicious apps, plus several other new security, user interface and updates and fixes.
Windows 10 moves closer to killing off passwords with Edge WebAuthn logins
Windows Hello biometric login could soon be the key to all your favorite websites.
Is Windows 10 still telling Microsoft what you’re doing even if you don’t want it to?
Microsoft baffles Windows 10 users by apparently collecting data about recently opened websites and apps when users have opted against sharing that information.
Microsoft needs to refocus on Windows 10 fundamentals, not just new features
Opinion: Microsoft needs to step off the new feature train, at least temporarily, and get Windows 10’s reliability and fundamentals back on track.
Microsoft: This Azure password-banning tool will help kill off bad ‘P@$$w0rd’ habits TechRepublic
Admins can now significantly reduce the risk of accounts being compromised by password-spraying attacks.
Safari tests USB security key support to help fix our password problems CNET
Apple’s browser is catching up to Firefox, Chrome and Edge with better sign-on technology.