Microsoft held a Windows 11 event today where it unveiled several new things coming to the desktop operating system. While many of the announcements were centred on work, there are plenty of other little changes and tidbits worth paying attention to.
We’ve rounded up some of the best and most interesting new Windows 11 features below:
File Explorer tabs
Next up, Windows 11’s File Explorer app is finally getting tabs. This feature has been a long time coming, and MobileSyrup recently reported Microsoft was testing it in a Windows Insider build.
The addition of tabs will allow Windows 11 users to navigate multiple folders in a single File Explorer window. It should help boost productivity, especially for people dealing with files spread across multiple folders.
Alongside the tabs, File Explorer will get a new homepage with the typical Quick Access folders, recent documents, and a new favourites option. There will be an updated sharing dialogue as well.
Source: The Verge
According to XDA Developers, Windows 11 will soon get a ‘Live Captions’ feature than can automatically generate captions for audio generated by any app or website. It sounds like this new system-wide capability will work similar to Google’s Live Caption feature for Android and Chrome.
Integrating Windows 365 cloud PCs to Windows 11
This is purely a business feature, but I wanted to include it because I think it’s pretty neat. Microsoft added PCs to the cloud with Windows 365 last year — the feature allows businesses to access cloud PCs from anywhere to stream a version of Windows 10 or 11 inside a web browser.
Now, Microsoft is integrating the feature into Windows 11’s virtual desktop (dubbed Task View) feature. That will allow Windows 11 users to switch between their desktop and a cloud PC with ease.
Microsoft is calling it ‘Windows 365 Switch’ and it will come alongside some other improvements for 365, including ‘Boot’ to let users directly log into a cloud PC at startup, and a new offline feature to let people work locally when they don’t have connectivity to access a cloud PC.
You can learn more about these features via The Verge.
Focus feature, Start folders, and other small changes
Rounding things out are a few other smaller updates. That includes a new ‘Focus’ feature with a timer so users can focus for a period of time. Along with that, Microsoft detailed other small benefits coming to Windows 11, such as app folders in the Start menu.
Snap Layouts will gain touch support soon, making it easier for users on touch devices to snap windows into different configurations.
That looks like it for now, but we’ll add any other new features to this post as they arrive.