Microsoft Launcher 5.9 has exited the beta ring with a couple of useful improvements. The most notable is a revamp of the calendar on the date and time widget, which now supports live date updates.
This means the calendar will always show the right date, even if you switch time zones or the clocks change. It also has a slightly more simplistic look, increasing the clean feeling of the launcher.
For reference, this version of the app is technically 220.127.116.11736. This is because Insiders have been testing the addition for a little while, and Microsoft has stamped out bugs in the meantime.
This time around, users should note fixes for the calendar card, dock, and wallpapers. As ever, Microsoft has also improved performance, assuring it stays silky smooth on all devices.
These are admittedly minor improvements, but Microsoft Launcher is set to be one of the company’s most important pieces of Android software going forward.
At its October 8 Surface event, the company announced the Surface Duo, a dual-screen phone that will be running Google’s Android. The decision to abandon Windows on mobile was a big one for Microsoft, and its users will be looking for an experience on Android that still slots nicely into its ecosystem. Changes like this are small, but increase the feeling of polish.
Currently, Launcher gives fans easy access to their news feeds, tasks, Sticky Notes, Cortana, and Microsoft rewards. It also ties in Bing weather and Bing search.
The app will work in tandem with the Your Phone app, which lets Windows users view and reply to notifications, send SMS, and make calls from their PC.
We can expect work on both apps to ramp up as we approach Duo’s holiday 2020 release. Microsoft Launcher has thankfully had a lot of time to evolve, previously being named Arrow, but the move to a dual-screen form factor comes with additional hurdles.