Late last week, somewhat buried in a blog post introducing "Windows Update for Business", Terry Myerson announced that moving forward, Microsoft's new continuous update policy would apply to all devices, including phones. ZDNet columnist Ed Bott dug a little deeper, and clarified that Microsoft would indeed take control of the update process for Windows 10 Mobile:
"A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed to me that that statement applies to all Windows 10 Mobile devices, personal and business, and that the new mobile update process will be consistent with the update process for Windows 10 on PCs. Updates will contain security and reliability fixes as well as new features."
This is a big departure from the current status, where Microsoft provides updates to the carriers who then actually (eventually) ship the updates, and there are many in the tech community who aren't convinced the change will really take place. Peter Bright from Ars Technica is one:
While I hope Microsoft's claim to be handling all patching for W10M is true, I'll believe it when I see it.
— Peter Bright (@DrPizza) May 18, 2015
Tom Warren of The Verge isn't convinced, either:
I don't think Microsoft will be able to bypass carriers for Windows Phone OS updates. Apps / OS features? Sure
— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) May 16, 2015
For its part, Microsoft told Bott that mobile operators would have early access to Windows builds moving forward, and in a statement provided to WinBeta earlier today, their input will be "invaluable", but Microsoft will update Windows 10 Mobile devices:
“Microsoft will continue to work closely with mobile operators on testing to meet and exceed quality bars. The input of mobile operators is invaluable to the testing process. Microsoft will use their input, as well as input from the millions of Windows Insiders, to decide when to send out mobile updates to Windows 10 devices.” - Microsoft spokesperson
Obviously there are still questions as to how this is going to work, including what to do about firmware updates, and how much of a say the operators will have on whether an update ships or not, but it sure looks like Microsoft, and not the carriers, will be updating Windows 10 Mobile devices.