Microsoft reveals 3D focus for Windows 10 update

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Microsoft reveals 3D focus for Windows 10 update

New desktop PC and laptop announced.

Microsoft has announced an update to its Windows 10 operating system that lets users take photos and edit content in three dimensions.

The Windows 10 Creators Update, coming in early 2017, will allow users on mobile devices to take three-dimensional photos by scanning an object as they walk around it. 

It also allows for 3D graphics in Microsoft's popular PowerPoint presentation software, and a new "Paint 3D" application lets people edit photos and other designs in three dimensions. 

"3D creation is a tough thing to simplify, but Microsoft's attempt ... is the best effort I have seen to date," Patrick Moorhead of Moor Insights & Strategy wrote in a research note. 

Terry Myerson, executive vice president for Microsoft's Windows and devices group, said the update was tailored for gamers who are increasingly interested in augmented and virtual reality experiences. 

Virtual reality accessories for the update will start at US$299 (A$391) in the US, Myerson said. 

"We are building Windows for each of us (and enabling) people to experience computing in new ways," Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella said.

The technology company also announced a new desktop computer, the Surface Studio, that it will primarily market to designers for its touch-screen capabilities, priced in the US at US$2999 and above. 

Microsoft also said it would introduce a new Surface Book laptop whose battery life is 30 percent longer at 16 hours. 

The new products come as Microsoft's Windows and computing business is struggling.  

Revenue for the unit fell 1.8 percent last quarter to US$9.29 billion, with Microsoft forecasting the division's sales at up to US$11.6 billion for this quarter, well below year-earlier results of US$12.7 billion. 

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