Are you planning to upgrade to Microsoft Windows 11?
A lot of Windows 10 PCs are eligible for free upgrades to Microsoft Windows 11 starting in late 2021. If your laptops can already make the switch, you might feel tempted. However, your lack of knowledge can cause you to regret the decision later.
The good news is our guide can help. Read on as we discuss some facts and considerations before upgrading to Windows 11. That way, you can make an informed decision today:
New Desirable Features
An upgrade will never feel like one unless it has lots of new and defining features. Here are some of the most desirable ones to look out for when switching to Microsoft Windows 11:
Updated Look and Feel
Aesthetics are not everything, but it is one of the primary reasons Windows 11 feels like a substantial upgrade. This new operating system has a fresh design since it is more colorful, cleaner, and easier to use.
However, Windows 11 remains familiar for anyone with Windows 10 to understand. If you are a long-time Windows user, you need not relearn much to jump into the new operating system.
The most noticeable shift is the new Taskbar since it is now at the center. Its minimalistic yet attractive aesthetic is similar to Macs and Chromebooks. Even with the cleaner visuals, its purpose remains the same.
When you tap the Windows key, it will show the new Start menu. It puts large app icons at the forefront. The best part is it can make recommendations based on your recent app downloads.
Windows 11 is a visual delight because of its majestic new themes. It has six preset themes, giving you options for vibrant colors. You also enjoy light and dark modes, allowing you to personalize your PC further.
However, placing both Start and Search icons on the Taskbar is slightly redundant. Both work the same when looking for recent files and apps.
Windows 10 had remarkable multitasking capabilities. However, its successor takes it to the next level by borrowing from the Apple macOS.
You can now make virtual desktops, each with its exclusive set of open applications. It is a desirable feature when you work from home. Your daytime desktop features work-related applications while the nighttime one has video games.
Making and switching between multiple desktops are seamless. To make it easier, you can give each virtual desktop a unique background and name. It prevents you from getting confused when you have over ten of these desktops.
The usual Windows multitasking tools remain intuitive, but you can use new tricks to enjoy them better. Windows 11 has the new Snap Layouts, allowing you to hover over a window and pick from layout options. An example is splitting the screen with another app.
Making the layouts is smooth, but some third-party apps do not snap as perfectly into place. When you have a smaller screen, expect some apps to overlap other windows. The good news is most developers are optimizing their apps for this feature, meaning it is unlikely to persist.
Windows has had the Focus Assist feature for years now. However, the latest OS does a better job making it more prominent. After all, you can now access it from the Taskbar.
Focus Assist allows you to pick between three notification settings:
- Priority only
- Alarms only
This feature is useful when you want to work with little to no interruptions. It is not as beneficial as its Windows 10 version since you need to dig deep into the menus. However, it is not as robust compared to Apple’s customizable Focus modes.
Windows 11 has a lot of impressive small details underneath its flashy new look and features. For example, when something is using your microphone, you will see a tiny icon at the bottom of the screen. It is a great privacy feature, bringing the OS up to par with Apple.
Also, Windows 11 features an ETA on the software update after choosing to “Update and Shut Down” or “Update and Restart.”
Eventual Android App Support
Native Android app support does not drop at the Windows 11 launch. However, Microsoft guarantees the ability to download Android apps to your computer in the future. It means you can record and post a TikTok video from your desktop computer.
This feature allows Windows 11 to become on par with Chromebooks. However, downloading Android apps is a different process. You will use the Microsoft Store to look for apps from the Amazon Appstore.
PC Gaming Updates
Windows 11 has some new gaming features to ensure your PC games run faster and look better. It also supports Auto HDR, similar to the new Xbox Series X consoles. This feature allows HDR in compatible games, making them more vibrant.
Your games will also load faster due to the DirectStorage feature. Its design increases your graphics card and Intel Evo processor efficiency. Computers with this feature will have the “DirectStorage Optimized” label.
Better Screenshot Tool
After Windows 10 came out, the Snip & Sketch utility came along. It is a utility for taking screenshots. Pressing the Windows Key + Shift + S buttons allows you to pick an area for a screenshot.
The screenshot area can either be rectangular or free-form. You can also pick entire windows or screens. After that, the feature allows you to paste it from the clipboard.
Windows 11 came with a new and improved Snipping Tool. This feature has an optional timer delay before taking a screenshot.
Microsoft Windows 11 Improvement Areas
As great as Windows 11 is, it has some drawbacks in need of improvement. The features listed below will never ruin your experience, but they can be inconvenient for some people.
The new Windows version has a Widgets application. At its core, it is Windows 10’s upgraded version of the news feed. It allows you to discover various things, such as:
- News stories
- Sports scores
However, it needs improvement due to its cumbersome and inflexible feel. Widgets is a neat application, but these issues make users less likely to use it.
When clicking the Widget icon on the Taskbar, a tray will pop out from the left side of the screen. You can move the widgets around and change their size. However, you can only use 11 types with limited sizing choices.
When compared to Apple and Android devices, the Windows version of widgets is not as robust. It’s likely more widgets will appear as the new Windows operating system updates over time. In its current form, it lacks substance.
Also, below your widgets, you have a news stories feed. You can customize them, but the process involves visiting a website.
Windows 11 has a Microsoft Teams chat integration. You can access this feature in the Taskbar, allowing you to text and call friends. It is as seamless as iMessage and FaceTime.
However, it suffers from some issues since it is not as comprehensive as its Apple counterpart.
The new Microsoft Teams Chat tool will show your friends list. You can also use it to pull your existing contacts from Skype and Microsoft Outlook. Regardless, you can share a link to invite everyone else.
When you click on these contacts, you can start a video call or a text chat. However, it feels slightly disjointed since this action opens a separate Teams window. The more critical issue is getting your friends and family members to use Microsoft Teams for this feature to work.
With these issues, the Windows 11 Teams Chat feature feels niche. Even the Android Phone app is more intuitive when used for making calls from a Windows PC.
Should You Do a Windows 11 Laptop Upgrade?
A lot of early testers enjoyed their Windows 11 experience. However, it is not an essential upgrade for every PC user. The refreshing visual upgrade and the basic features are nice, but you are not missing a lot if you have Windows 10.
The only reason to upgrade is if you are a heavy multitasker or want Windows to look better. When you juggle lots of applications at once, you will appreciate its multiple virtual desktop feature. Combine it with Focus Assist to accomplish some serious work.
Regardless, Windows 11 is more a refresh since it does not reinvent the wheel. It is not a drawback since your muscle memory from using Windows for years will still apply.
The new operating system is also a blessing for younger and less tech-savvy users. After all, they will have a less cluttered experience. However, consider getting the best laptop in the market to ensure its Windows 11 compatibility.
Upgrade to Microsoft Windows 11 Now
These are some considerations before upgrading to Microsoft Windows 11. If you are looking forward to these features, do not hesitate and get an update.
However, your chosen laptop will affect whether you can get this new operating system. You might end up replacing your current device to pave the way for Windows 11. Look for the best deals online to secure your monetary investment.
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