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Microsoft has revealed Windows 11 and it has major macOS vibes

After leaks last week, Microsoft has revealed its latest version of Windows.

windows 11 on a laptop
Image: Microsoft

Microsoft finally officially unveiled the Windows 11 branding today, with multiple updates to the UI and how the operating system handles things.

The biggest thing to take away? Windows looks more like Mac, with rounded everything and a new place for the Start Menu in the middle of the taskbar.

Those changes include a new Start menu, that looks more like the app drawer on your mobile phone than the one you’ve been used to on the desktop. Live Tiles are finally gone, with only apps, documents, and search appearing on the uncluttered start menu. Nice.

new snap layouts in windows 11
Image: Microsoft

The Maximize button on every window now has what’s called “Snap Layouts,” which lets you easily arrange windows on your desktop with one click, without having to fight against the dragging options in Windows 10.

The best part about this? Windows 11 will also remember where your windows were, thanks to Snap Group layouts. Yes, no more wondering where your app windows are when you resume from sleep.

Microsoft Edge can now have tab groups on the side, or across the top edge, so you don’t have to switch browsers if you prefer a sidebar arrangement. We’re not saying you shouldn’t switch, just know you have options.

Windows updates have been made 40-percent smaller, and now happen in the background. Will that mean Windows 11 won’t try to reboot in the middle of the workday? We can only hope.

windows 11 home screen
Image: Microsoft

Microsoft Teams is fully integrated into Windows 11, in a similar fashion to how Skype was in Windows 10. Windows 11 brings back Widgets, which slide out from the left-hand side, including things like maps, weather, and news.

Android apps are natively supported in Windows 11, via Intel Bridge tech. That means you’re not limited to the Windows Store for apps, or website versions of creator-focused apps like TikTok or Instagram, which always have features missing on desktop. You’ll have to choose from Android apps available in the Amazon App Store though, which might restrict options slightly.

Speaking of the Windows Store, Adobe is bringing Creative Cloud to the store, developers can use their own payment processing systems so they don’t have to pay Microsoft a single cent of subscriptions or in-app payments, and the Microsoft Store is now able to support multiple app types, not just UWP apps as before in Windows 10.

skyrim showing auto hdr in windows 11
Image: Microsoft

Xbox is getting a deeper integration to Windows 11, with Auto HDR coming from its place on Xbox Series consoles, DirectStorage to improve load times, and Xbox Game Pass is getting a new home in an updated version of the Xbox app. Oh, that means xCloud is also integrated into Windows 11, so you can stream games straight from the cloud.

That’s pretty much everything Microsoft announced so far. Windows 11 will be out this holiday, as a free upgrade to anyone using Windows 10. Check your PC can run it by downloading the Upgrade Checker from Microsoft.

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