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Microsoft Build 2020: How to live stream the developer conference

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft's annual Build developer conference starts today (May 19), where we expect to hear the latest news on Windows 10, Office, Azure and more. 

Typically held in Seattle, Build 2020 will be a virtual event due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The event, which usually has an asking price of around $2,000, will be free to everyone. 

Here is everything you need to know about Build 2020, including the steps needed to register and stream the conference on your laptop.

When is Microsoft Build 2020?

Microsoft Build 2020 starts on May 19 at 8am PT/11am ET. The digital event will run for 48 hours with the final main event starting on May 20 at 9:30pm PT and certain sessions ending on May 21.  

How to watch Microsoft Build 2020

Build 2020 will stream on Microsoft's website for anyone who registered for the event. If you haven't already, you can still register on the Microsoft Build website by submitting some basic information (name, email, etc). 

After you register, you'll receive a confirmation email with a link back to the Microsoft Build homepage where the event will be streamed. Make sure you're logged into your account to watch the stream. 

Microsoft Build 2020 schedule

Microsoft posted a handy event schedule on the Build 2020 page. Instead of streaming the conference for 48 hours, give the schedule a look to determine which sessions, workshops and keynotes you want to virtually attend. 

We will be tuning into the opening "Empowering every developer" keynote (May 19, 8:20am PT) given by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. That will be followed by the Imagine Cup, a competition for students to solve the world's toughest challenges. 

Sessions about Azure will begin on May 19 at 10:15am PT, followed by a "social hour" at 4:45pm PT and a chat about the future of tech (May 20, 9:45am PT). There will be digital breakout sessions covering a range of topics throughout the three-day event.  

This is just a small sample of Build 2020. If you've already registered, we recommend using the "Build your schedule" tool to organize your next few days. Keep in mind, all sessions will be available to every participant regardless of their timezone. And thanks to the power of the internet, you can easily jump between sessions.

What to expect at Build 2020

Microsoft Build is meant for developers, so app creation, coding and AI are always hot topics at the event. 

Every now and then, Microsoft will provide an update on consumer products, like Windows 10, Edge or Surface, but we're not expecting any major highlights this year. If we're lucky, we might hear a bit more about Windows 10X, and we'd be surprised if the Teams collaboration platform wasn't a major focus. 

Of its consumer-focused products, Microsoft Office will likely gain the most attention at Build 2020. Microsoft recently revealed two new services, Microsoft 365 Personal and Microsoft 365 Family, in March. There are currently a dozen sessions on Microsoft 365 alone, including "Remote Work with Microsoft 365" and "Unleashing the Microsoft Graph."