Microsoft starts pushing phone firmware updates to Windows 10 Insiders

Microsoft is still paving the way for older phones to upgrade to Windows 10 Mobile.

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Credit: Acer

Microsoft will begin automatically pushing new firmware to participants in its Insider program beginning on Thursday, smoothing the process of receiving the latest technology for Windows Mobile 10.

Previously, users who wanted a firmware update had to shift their phone to the Production ring, then shift their phone back to their desired Windows 10 Insider ring. That’s a hassle that the auto-publish update will alleviate.

Microsoft has taken back control of most of the deployment of Windows 10 software from the carriers, in a bid to push new technology out to customers without the months of testing that those carriers would sometime impose.. And it’s no small feat—there are literally hundreds of permutations of firmware between device, carrier, and region. According to Microsoft, Insiders won’t have to do a thing; all the firmware will be auto-published to their phones, along with the Windows 10 Insider updates.

On Thursday, Microsoft released Mobile Insider Build 10586.122 for the Slow and Release Preview rings of Windows 10 Mobile. Users on the other ring, known as the Fast ring, will have to switch back to one of the other two rings to receive the improvements. 

As it has with other recent builds, 10586.122 is designed to facilitate the transition from Windows Phone 8.1 to Windows 10, and Microsoft is encouraging users to actually downgrade from Windows 10 Mobile back to Windows Phone 8.1 via the Windows Device Recovery Tool, then back to Windows 10 Mobile to test the experience. All of the new updates that are included in the release fix bugs, including the overall stability of the OS and alarms. Microsoft did not list any bugs with the new release.

Why this matters: Although the market share of Windows phones continues to shrink, it’s nice to see Microsoft still going the extra mile for the customers who are willing to help push Windows 10 Mobile development forward.

This story, "Microsoft starts pushing phone firmware updates to Windows 10 Insiders" was originally published by PCWorld.