Windows 11: release date, design, features, all the info on Sun Valley

Microsoft is about to unveil its brand new operating system which will take the name of Windows 11. The successor to Windows 10 will notably offer a completely renovated interface as well as new features. Here’s everything we know about it.

First images of Windows 11
(Credit: The Verge)

Finally, Windows 10 will not be the last version of Microsoft’s operating system. This will soon give way to its successor whose first outlines are starting to take shape. The future OS will be called Windows 11, previously presented under the code name Sun Valley. We can now say without fear since the installation ISO file was recently found on the Web. This preview has landed in the hands of some users who hastened to test it.

For its part, the specialized press has obviously shared glimpses of the interface and new features before the time, arousing the ire of Microsoft. The Redmond firm has also filed DMCA complaints with Google in order to remove the links to the pages where the images of Windows 11 are revealed. What confirms the authenticity of this build, Microsoft having indicated in its appeals that it was indeed a Windows 11 leak.

With the arrival of Windows 11 imminent, what can we expect from this new operating system? When will it be released? What about its price? Elements of answer below.

Windows 11: when to release?

Let it be said, Windows 11 should be available this year. In addition to the preview leak mentioned above, Microsoft plans to hold a virtual conference Thursday June 24 at 5 p.m.. The opportunity for the company to come back at length on its new OS. A beta should also be offered in the wake of Insiders whose opinions will allow the firm to refine its OS as much as possible. Once optimized, it will be able to invite itself on all PCs. We can work on an outing in the fall. Or even back to school if we are lucky!

Will Windows 11 be free for Windows 10 users?

As a reminder, it was possible to switch from Windows 7 or 8.1 to Windows 10 without paying any kopeck. And in all likelihood, users of older versions of the OS will also be able to migrate to Windows 11 for free. This is in any case what a paper from XDA Developers puts forward. Specialized media claims that the preview includes product configuration keys that support the aforementioned older versions. This would also be logical, Microsoft having an interest in keeping its plethora of users in its ecosystem.

However, it will be necessary to wait until the 24th to be sure. Note that the newbies will have to heat the credit card to taste the joys of Windows 11. For information, you have to pay between 145 and 259 euros to get one of the versions of Windows 10. We can therefore imagine that Windows 11 is close to this price range.

Towards the end of Windows 10?

There is currently nothing to say that Windows 10 will disappear when the final version of Windows 11 is available. What’s more, Microsoft has a habit of letting its old OS last for many years, like Windows XP which has been around for 13 years. With Windows 10 released in 2015, it should still be available for a while. Especially since the end of support is scheduled for October 14, 2025.

Windows 11: what are the expected new features?

A widely updated interface

The Start menu in Windows 11

The Sun Valley update promised a major design change to the Windows interface. And in view of the preview leak, it is clear that Windows 11 will be very different from its predecessor. Starting with the Start menu, now located right in the center of the taskbar. By clicking on the icon, we quickly see that it is no longer stuck to the menu. And that the display of shortcuts is very different than on the previous version.

At the top, we find the pinned applications (as you wish). The lower part leaves room for recommendations, namely freshly installed applications or recently opened files. End clap therefore for the tiles! In addition, the taskbar can be easily customized by clicking on Taskbar settings. This will allow access to a much less loaded customization interface than the endless drop-down menus of Windows 10.

Moreover, the search bar is now replaced by a magnifying glass icon. Which will give the possibility of searching for occurrences in the operating system. In addition, know that this new version will be strongly influenced by Windows 10X finally nipped in the bud. In doing so, the windows will notably have rounded corners. As for the taskbar, it can appear in three different formats.

What’s more, window management will be greatly simplified. From the file explorer, it will therefore be possible to modify their location as you wish, by placing them for example in a set of four windows, in the lower corner of the screen, in the upper corner… the possibilities are numerous.

News and fields of interest

Windows 11 : les widgets

The Windows 11 taskbar will be enhanced with a widget that will display the latest news, local weather forecasts, sports and economic information. It will be possible to refine as you wish what will appear on it according to your preferences. Note that it was already accessible for people who opted for the 21H1 update of Windows 10.

Towards a new Microsoft Store

At the moment, we couldn’t find out more about what’s new in the Microsoft Store. But this should be profoundly changed. Which would not be a luxury as the loaded interface would benefit from being optimized. In particular, navigation should be much smoother while downloads would be faster. The new Microsoft Store should also appeal to developers if Microsoft’s invitation is to be believed: “Log in to find out what we have in store for developers.”

New features yet to be revealed

It remains to be seen what the other innovations of Windows 11 will be. For the moment, we have mostly heard about aesthetic changes. But new features should obviously be there. We are thinking in particular of compatibility with Android applications, the extensive personalization of your computer according to your use (gaming, entertainment, professional use, etc.) or improved management of multitasking.

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