Windows 10 Preview Build 16199 Changes Game-Related Settings, Breaks Windows Mixed Reality

Microsoft released Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 16199 to Fast ring members of the Windows Insider Program. The new build expands the availability of the new Story Remix tool, adds new functionalities to the My People feature, and changes some game-related settings.

The company previously said that Story Remix was available to Windows Insider Program members. But that wasn't actually the case--the tool, which allows you to edit videos and mixed reality content with the help of AI, is currently being A/B tested. So if you don't have access to Story Remix even though you're a Fast ring member of the Windows Insider Program, you can either wait for the text to expand or email the Story Remix team directly.

My People got the most updates in Preview Build 16199. The feature allows you to "pin" some of your favorite people to the Windows 10 taskbar. This is supposed to make it easier to chat with them, send files, etc. Now the feature has a couple new tricks. You can set it to automatically show animated emoji from your pinned contacts, for example, or drag a file to someone's icon on your taskbar to immediately start composing a new email. A new badge will also show you the number of unread messages you have from each contact. (You can also hide the animated emoji via taskbar settings.)

Perhaps the most useful (and cryptic) change has to do with game preferences within the Settings app or Game Bar. Microsoft explained in its blog post:

Broadcast using game-only audio: Under Settings > Gaming > Broadcasting, you can now choose “Per-app audio” to broadcast using only the game’s audio to Beam as opposed to the audio for your entire PC.Audio settings is now Game DVR in Game bar: We have renamed the Audio settings page under the settings in Game bar to be Game DVR. All Game DVR settings from the general gaming settings page has been moved to be under Game DVR. Per-app audio settings is also included here as well.

The company also said a new Game Monitor page has been added to the Settings app. What's it for? Microsoft isn't telling. It said the page is "for potential future functionality which doesn’t do anything right now." Still, even the changes available in Preview Build 16199 should be useful, especially for anyone who likes to live-stream while listening to music or playing some other sound in the background. 

Preview Build 16199 also moves around other settings and includes some bug fixes, such as one that caused color profiles to be ignored after "launching certain fullscreen games." But the build also includes some nasty problems of its own, including...

[UPDATED] You will be unable to type in your password to log in to any UWP apps such as Netflix, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Messenger apps.Games such as Civilization VI may fail to launch on this build.Windows Mixed Reality won’t work on this build. If you are a developing testing and developing for Windows Mixed Reality, you will want to avoid this build. If you update this build and need Windows Mixed Reality, you will need to roll-back to Build 16193.

That's bad news for Windows Mixed Reality developers who want to use the latest versions of Windows, for gamers who enjoy Civilization VI, and for consumers who just want to sign in to, you know, some of the most popular apps in the world. The problems are made even more notable by Microsoft's emphasis on the Universal Windows Platform, games, and Windows Mixed Reality during last week's Build developer conference.

But that is what happens when you test pre-release software. This build is just reaching Fast ring members of the Windows Insider Program; these are people who know what they're getting into. If they don't, well, Preview Build 16199 might be a good warning for them to slow down a bit.

Nathaniel Mott
Freelance News & Features Writer

Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.

  • hst101rox
    Yet no kernel improvements for probably more than 1 year now. And no improvements to core software like explorer.exe.
  • Mister-S
    What a freakin joke!
  • philipemaciel
    I just wanted fewer bugs...
  • philipemaciel
    bloat bloat bloat
  • ledhead11
    I keep saying they need to slow down on adding features and just focus on fixing what they have. It's not hard to believe that within 1-2 years they'll have to issue patches for each new feature for the exploits then found. It's bad enough now that each monthly update averages 1/2GB upwards of >3GB depending on how many of these features you have or get.