Microsoft's first big Windows 11 update lands in February

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,033   +150
Staff member
Recap: Microsoft released Windows 11 to the public last October as a free upgrade for devices running Windows 10. Redmond invested a lot of time and effort into building the new OS, but some features didn’t make the deadline and thus weren’t available at launch.

Microsoft in June 2021 announced plans to bring Android apps to Windows 11 through a partnership with Amazon. The tie in wasn’t ready when Windows 11 shipped, although Windows Insiders did get test the feature in a limited capacity shortly after.

In a recent post on the official Windows blog, Microsoft Chief Product Officer Panos Panay said they will be bringing new experiences to Windows “that include a public preview of how you can use Android apps on Windows 11 through the Microsoft Store and our partnerships with Amazon and Intel.”

The wording here is a bit confusing as it doesn’t explicitly say there will be a public preview of the feature, but a preview of how you can use Android apps in Windows 11.

Panay touched on other inbound features including taskbar improvements such as call mute and unmute, easier window sharing, bringing weather information to the taskbar and redesigned versions of Notepad and Media Player.

Windows 11 is off to a solid start, at least according to Microsoft. Panay said Windows now powers more than 1.4 billion monthly active devices, and that time spent in Windows is up 10 percent over pre-pandemic levels. People accepted the upgrade offer to Windows 11 at twice the rate Microsoft saw for Windows 10. Traffic to the redesigned Microsoft Store is also up threefold.

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PixelMediaArts

Posts: 35   +59
The best feature of Windows 11 is how easy it is to switch back to Windows 10.

Personally waiting for them to give more options for the Task Bar. With my ultra-wide screen it is ingrained in me to have it docked on the left side. I tried it for 10 minutes and swiched back... Also what is up with the icons, the art direction looks a bit baby-ish. The style needs to reflect that these machines are WAY more expensive than a Chromebook. At least give us options Microsoft! <Shaking fist to the sky>
 

netman

Posts: 752   +317
I already used the hack to move the taskbar to the top of the screen and I am hoping the February update doesn't move it back down...!
 

fps4ever

Posts: 864   +1,277
There is a lot to like about Win 11 like speed and compatibly but the convoluted menu system, making it harder by needing more clicks to change or shut off certain settings is definitely not one of them. Any power user or admin knows what I mean.
 

Superconductor

Posts: 84   +94
Win 11 is fine and will become finer as time marches on. I was hesitant but now have no regrets pushing two laptops and one Ryzen based gaming beast onto it. The gains outweigh any of the little niggles encountered. And they are absolutely small niggles...

Those that complain about each & every WIndows major roll out like to hear themselves emote. Just sayin...
 
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Mouseface

Posts: 66   +73
The best feature of Windows 11 is how easy it is to switch back to Windows 10.

Personally waiting for them to give more options for the Task Bar. With my ultra-wide screen it is ingrained in me to have it docked on the left side. I tried it for 10 minutes and swiched back... Also what is up with the icons, the art direction looks a bit baby-ish. The style needs to reflect that these machines are WAY more expensive than a Chromebook. At least give us options Microsoft! <Shaking fist to the sky>

its been an option since day 1 to move the start menu to the left? mine is on the left since day one on my x35

auto HDR is very nice
 

SiJiL

Posts: 9   +8
its been an option since day 1 to move the start menu to the left? mine is on the left since day one on my x35

auto HDR is very nice
You can move the start menu to the left, you can't move the entire task bar to the left edge of your screen.

I'm in exactly the same position as PixelMediaArts - I have my Win10 taskbar on the edge of my 2nd monitor, making it quicker to get to from both screens. Not being able to do that in Win11 made it feel clunky and annoying, along with other things like no clock on the taskbar on the 2nd screeen so I rolled back to 10 after an hour.
 

OortCloud

Posts: 731   +667
Windows 11 is just Windows 10 with a dumbed down start menu - there's so little to it that its difficult to love or hate.
 

Watzupken

Posts: 570   +474
There is a lot to like about Win 11 like speed and compatibly but the convoluted menu system, making it harder by needing more clicks to change or shut off certain settings is definitely not one of them. Any power user or admin knows what I mean.
Unfortunately, the quest to keep the UI clean will result in more and more hidden menu and options. It is not just a Windows problem because I see this problem on most OS, even mobile ones.

In any case, I am looking to see what big things MS will break with this release. It is impossible to get everything in perfect order, but almost every time if not every time there is a release, even very obvious issues gets rolled out, and in most cases, the issues were already there and highlighted to MS during the testing phase. Instead of fixing the issues, they chose to improve cosmetics of the UI, and kick the fix down the road just so that they can meet their timeline.
 

MasterFig

Posts: 10   +11
its been an option since day 1 to move the start menu to the left? mine is on the left since day one on my x35

auto HDR is very nice
I think you misunderstood what he was wanting! If I'm not mistaken he is wanting to move the whole taskbar to the left side of the screen (so that it runs from top to bottom along the left side of the screen)
 

GamerNerves

Posts: 170   +106
Fascinating how people bash Windows 11 when it's pretty much like 10. Perhaps it's worse for some by a slim margin? It's almost the same anyway, just upgrade when you feel like it's not risky anymore. I like the fact 11 is ever so slightly snappier, or then the animations just fool me.

Good job from Microsoft, I'm happy.
 

bviktor

Posts: 778   +1,188
Fix the extremely slow File Explorer, and the notifications sometimes popping up HOURS later, and I'm happy.