Microsoft launches Windows 11 update, a new design, Start menu, and a free upgrade

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Microsoft has officially released their next OS update, for Windows today June 24, 2021: Windows 11 for you to download.

The new Microsoft update for Windows 11 is a simplification of the Windows user interface, a new Windows store, and improvements to performance and multitasking.

New Windows 11 features

Features for the Windows 11 includes a new Start menu and upgraded Start button centered on the taskbar. The new Start menu drops the Live Tiles that were originally introduced with Windows 8 and gives more of the typical launcher you’d find in Chrome OS or Android.

There are apps, recent documents, and a separate search interface. Much of the centered appearance is clearly influenced by macOS and Chrome OS, and Windows 11 also includes the rounded corners we’ve seen in both Android and iOS.

Windows chief Panos Panay says “the team has obsessed over every detail.” Windows 11 will also include updated dark and light modes, that look a lot better than what we’ve seen in Windows today.

  • Microsoft also introduced a new snap layout, that allows uses to quickly snap apps into the various modes that Windows 11 supports. This new version of Windows 11 will also remember where your apps are stored.
  • Microsoft is also improving the gestures you can use on tablets, and the touch targets. Instead of flipping into a tablet mode, Windows 11 simply adapts to allow you to touch the OS easily.
  • Coupled with this are improvements to inking and voice typing. With certain pens, Windows 11 will also support haptic feedback here. That could mean we’ll see a lot of new hardware that will support these stylus changes in Windows 11.
  • However, one of the biggest parts of Windows 11 is the new store, redesigned to support a whole host of apps that haven’t typically been available in the Windows app store.

That includes apps from Adobe Creative Suite, and Android apps including TikTok and Instagram.

Windows 11 is a Free Upgrade

The new Windows 11 has been announced as a free upgrade for Windows 10 users. Similar to how Windows 10 was free for Windows 7 and Windows 8 users, this new Windows 11 version will be free for existing Windows 10 users.

Though Microsoft hasn’t shared an exact release date, the company says “Windows 11 will be available through a free upgrade for eligible Windows 10 PCs and on new PCs beginning this holiday.”

Minimum system requirements

All you’ll need is a PC that meets the minimum hardware requirements for Windows 11, which is now a 64-bit CPU, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage. Windows 11 will be delivered through Windows Update in much the same way as Windows 10 updates have been made available previously.

Minimum system requirements
Processor1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or System on a Chip (SoC)
Memory4 GB RAM
Storage64 GB or larger storage device
System firmwareUEFI, Secure Boot capable
TPMTrusted Platform Module (TPM) version 2.0
Graphics cardDirectX 12 compatible graphics / WDDM 2.x
Display>9” with HD Resolution (720p)
Internet connectionMicrosoft account and internet connectivity required for setup for Windows 11 Home

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