Microsoft today officially announced the next generation of Windows, which includes a bunch of design changes (some of which we have already seen in the leaked build) and a brand new Microsoft Store. The release date is expected for Holiday/Fall this year, but Beta builds will go out for Windows Insiders starting the week of June 28th.
Interestingly, Microsoft said that the leaked build from last week was not at all representative of the full release. That’s a given considering it was just an early build of W11, but it seems like that one specifically was only scratching the surface in terms of new features and enhancements.
For instance, Windows 11 is aimed to be the most functional, practical, and personal version of the OS so far. Windows Updates are 40% smaller, and are more efficient by operating in the background. W11 also uses less energy so gives you more battery life, and is also apparently the “most secure yet”.
Of course, for us, Windows is a major part of gaming and according to Microsoft: Windows 11 was made for us. That’s pretty ambitious. But the features they revealed are pretty exciting to say the least:
Auto HDR is one of those features, which was introduced in a Beta build on Windows 10 recently. The Xbox app is also now integrated directly into Windows 11, and the Microsoft Store is getting a cool new makeover to make it less of an eyesore and less frustrating to use. Android apps are also coming to Windows 11 through the use of the Microsoft Store’s integration with the Amazon marketplace.
But perhaps the most exciting feature for Windows gamers is the introduction of Direct Storage, which was first introduced in the next-gen Xbox Series X/S consoles last year and is finally coming to PC after much anticipation.
Windows will also apparently be a free upgrade for Windows 10 users, though you will have to pass the official system requirements in order to do so, which are slightly beefed up specs compared to Windows 10:
Windows 11 system requirements
- 64-bit dual-core processor
- 1Ghz clock speed
- 64GB drive
- 4GB RAM
- UEFI, Secure Boot, and TPM 2.0
- 9-inch display
- 1366 x 768 resolution
- DirectX 12 compatible graphics / WDDM 2.x
If you don’t feel like upgrading though then don’t worry, because Windows 10 users can keep using the OS until official support is dropped in 2025. Plus, there’s no time limit on the free upgrade, so you can cruise on the Windows 10 ship for as long as you want and upgrade whenever you feel like.
What do you think? Are you excited for Windows 11? How do you feel about the design changes? Do you think you’ll be upgrading soon? Let us know!