Microsoft is hosting an event on June 24 to discuss the future of Windows. And evidence was mounting that in addition to giving the operating system a new look, Microsoft was getting ready for a new name: Windows 11.
Now a leaked build of the operating system is making the rounds, and websites including xda-developers, The Verge, MSPowerUser, NotebookCheck, and Thurott.com have been posting screenshots and observations.
For the most part it looks like Microsoft took the work it had completed for Windows 10X before it was scrapped, ported it to Windows 10, added a few bells and whistles, and then slapped a new name on the operating system.
It’s basically Windows 10 with a fresh coat of paint, but all the key features of Microsoft’s desktop operating system are still there. Windows 10 apps should run without any problems. And the Settings app, File Manager, taskbar, and desktop all pretty much work the same way they have for years.
But the Start Menu has been redesigned with a more modern look and feel. The taskbar is centered (although you can move it back to the left side if you want). There are new icons. And many elements now have rounded corners. There’s also a new out-of-box experience OOBE for setting up a fresh Windows installation.
As someone who often walks through the Windows setup process on review hardware, I’m relieved to learn that there’s no Cortana to be seen in the new OOBE, and apparently you aren’t nagged for a Microsoft account either. It’s possible one or more of those things could change – folks are testing a leaked pre-release build after all. But I view those both as positive developments.
One significant change? There’s support for widgets… although that’s not entirely new either. Microsoft introduced a type of widget it called “gadgets” with Window Vista, but ended support for the feature when Windows 7 was retired.
Here’s a roundup of recent tech news from around the web.
- Windows 11 Sneak Peek [xda-developers]
Microsoft is expected to introduce Windows 11 later this month, but a build has leaked early, and screenshots show what looks like a cross between Windows 10 and the cancelled Windows 10X with a centered taskbar, large app launcher, and other changes.
- Update: Atari VCS Linux-based game console/PC is now available in stores for $300 and up [Liliputing]
As promised, the Atari VCS game console (which is also kind of a small, low-power Linux computer) is now available for purchase via retail stores including Best Buy, GameStop and Micro Center for $300 and up.
- Samsung Brings Flagship Features to Broader Smartphone Market With LPDDR5 Multichip Package [Samsung]
Samsung’s new LPDDR5 uMCP module combines LPDDR5 memory and UFS 3.1 NAND storage to bring “flagship-level performance to a much broader range” of smartphones including mid-range devices.
- Dynabook introduces Tecra A40 and A50 laptops with 11th-gen Intel Core chips [Dynabook]
Toshiba’s new Tecra A40-J and A50-J laptops feature 28-watt Intel Tiger Lake-U processors, up to 32GB of RAM, 1TB of solid state storage, and have Thunderbolt 4, WiFi 6, and HDMI 2.0. The 14 inch model weighs 3.24 pounds and measures 0.74″ thick.
- It’s time to reconfigure Chrome OS version numbers [About Chromebooks]
With Google pushing out new builds of Chrome OS (and the Chrome browser) every four weeks, the version numbers are becoming more meaningless than ever. Maybe it’s time to change that by using a date-based version scheme before it hits 100?
- 6 new features on Android this summer [Google]
Google rolls out Android Earthquake Alerts system globally, introduces starred Messages, Emoji Kitchen suggestions for Gboard, more Google Assistant voice app, improved password input and gaze detection for Voice Access and Android Auto updates.
- Nintendo Game & Watch: The Legend of Zelda [@liliputingnews/Nintendo]
The next Nintendo Game & Watch is coming this fall as a follow-up to last year’s Super Mario-themed edition. The new version ships with four games (including three classic Legend of Zelda titles). There’s no word on whether it’ll be as hackable as its predecessor, but it’s already up for pre-order from Amazon for $50.
The next Nintendo Game & Watch handheld device is coming in November and it’ll feature three Legend of Zelda games (the original NES game, Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, and the Game Boy title, Link’s Awakening) plus Vermin and Zelda-themed clocks. pic.twitter.com/fRRuFF4fhj
— Liliputing (@liliputingnews) June 15, 2021