If you’ve recently been near a Windows PC (or possibly a Mac via Bootcamp), you may have heard that Microsoft is hosting a special event on Thursday, June 24. The focus of this event was supposed to be on “what’s next for Windows,” but the secret details were exposed ahead of time thanks to a “leaked” build of Windows 11.
Microsoft is expected to officially announce Windows 11 on June 24. When this happens, you may notice and hear about features in Windows 11 that aren’t there in the leaked version. Microsoft hinted this in a YouTube video, and leaders from the firm have stated “next generation of Windows” several times at recent developer and partner events.
A Special Moment for Microsoft’s New Windows
Microsoft rarely hosts dedicated events to talk about Windows outside of its Build developer conference. Surface events typically contain indications about impending Windows versions, but Windows is no longer as big a deal for Microsoft as it once was.
The fact that Microsoft is hosting a Windows-specific event demonstrates a significant shift in tone. All of this is most likely the result of behind-the-scenes work by Microsoft executive Panos Panay, who is known for his flamboyant approach to product promotion.
The Microsoft Surface creator was named the head of a new organization dubbed “Windows + Devices” in 2020, which covers both the Surface hardware and the operating system.
Since Windows 11 is unmistakably his kid, expect Panay to arrive with his customary panache and enthusiasm.
A Tour of the New Windows
We believe Windows 11 will bring a huge visual update to Windows not seen since Windows 10 itself, based on the leaked build and Microsoft’s own subtle clues over the past few months. Though everything thus far appear to be quite similar to Microsoft’s now-defunct Windows 10X operating system, there are certain modifications on the way that many people feel have yet to be enabled.
More tweaks to the Start Menu, as well as the Action Center and widgets, are included in this update. These areas do not appear to be feature-complete in the current leaked version of Windows 11. With rounded sides and glasslike aero effects, they’re visually appealing, yet there’s a lot missing.
You can’t create or use custom widgets, the Action Center lacks the same touch controls as Windows 10X, and the Start Menu isn’t as customizable as it was in Windows 10. Even the tablet mode in Windows 10 lacks some gestures and other features. Let’s not forget about the lack of Live Tiles.
On June 24, Microsoft may unveil a newer version of Windows 11 with more features than what we’ve seen so far. Who knows, the company may even discuss how you can safely test it yourself via the Windows Insider program. Or how to get a free upgrade to Windows 11.
A Brand-New Microsoft Store
The Microsoft Store on Windows 10 has always been a jumble, but during the June 24 event, we expect some adjustments to be announced. Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, reportedly stated that he “self-hosted” and was “excited for the next generation of Windows.”
He even said, “Today, we will create more opportunity for every Windows developer and welcome every creator who is looking for the most innovative, new, open platform.”
Obviously, the Microsoft official knows something we don’t, and he’s hinting at major changes to the way Windows 10’s store and apps work. And there are plenty of rumors that merely add fuel to the fire that Nadella sparked.
It’s expected that with Windows 11, the Microsoft Store will finally accept Win32 programs such as Google Chrome and Firefox. Additionally, due to improvements in the store revenue scheme, developers are likely to make more money from their programs. There’s even speculation that Android apps may be available in the Microsoft Store, possibly through the Windows System for Linux.