We’ve listed 18 new features in Windows 11 here, but I’ll add or update information whenever possible to keep it up to date. Now we will consider the improvements that have affected the new operating system from Microsoft and will start with the updated Start menu and Action Center to support for Android applications, Auto-HDR and much more.
New Start Menu
Of all the new features in Windows 11, the new launcher-style floating Start menu is the most distinctive part of Microsoft’s next-generation desktop OS. Unlike the traditional Start menu, the new Start, as Microsoft calls it, sits right in the center of the taskbar. It has a pop-up design with attached and recommended apps accompanying each other. So far, in my use, the guidelines are pretty good. It quickly offers me access to documents, photos, and applications that I have recently installed.
Alternatively, you can hover your mouse over the search menu and it will suggest several apps based on your past searches. Overall, I think the new Start Menu is the best in Windows 11. It is fast, efficient, and delivers the best results in seconds. For users who are concerned about a launcher-style centered Start menu, you can revert to the old Windows 10 Start menu with Live Tiles support.
Animation in the taskbar
One of the best features of Windows 11 is fluid animation in the user interface. Open a new launcher or any application on the taskbar and you should see some cool animation. Now switch between apps or open the task view, there you have a smooth animation.
Swipe the widget bar or close the Action Center, every UI element responds to neat animations and them look and feel amazing. When it comes to UI and UX, I think Windows 11 pushed it out of the box by incorporating functional elements and beautiful design.
New wallpapers and sounds
In addition to Windows 11, Microsoft also introduced a series of beautiful wallpapers, sounds and themes. Wallpapers like Captured Motion, Flow, Sunrise, Glow are some of the most beautiful wallpapers you can find on a desktop OS. Also, the startup and notification sounds are really good. You can download Windows 11 wallpapers and listen to Windows 11 sounds from our related articles.
Needless to say, Windows 11 supports both light and dark mode, and this time around, the dark theme is pretty consistent across all UI elements. We may ignore a few legacy components in Windows 11 build 22000.51 as Microsoft will refine them ahead of the final release.
My second favorite Windows 11 feature is the revamped Action Center. It follows the design language we’ve seen in mobile OSs, and I really like this mobile-centric approach to important system switches. Now you can simply press the single WiFi, Volume & Battery button to open the new Action Center. It has all the controls you need, including the brightness and volume sliders. You can also add more radio buttons as before.
Even more interesting, the Bluetooth connection is now much faster and you don’t have to dive into settings to pair the device. It also comes with a clean, icon-based design and offers plenty of room to respond or clear up the clutter. Not to mention, the new Action Center is more responsive compared to the slow clutter that Windows 10 Action Center had. Kudos to Microsoft!
Universal multimedia control
What I love in the Yandex browser when there are many tabs open, their widget that allows you to enable or disable video or audio on any tab is now in the standard windows functionality!
You can now control playback of all your media from the new Action Center in Windows 11. Whether you’re playing a YouTube video, Spotify playlist, Twitter clip, or local video, everything appears in the Action Center. Please note that I tried to play the video using VLC, but it didn’t show up. However, when I played the same local video through my own Movies & TV app, it worked flawlessly. So yes, Universal Media Control is another useful feature in Windows 11.
Windows Explorer has been a major controversy among Windows users. Die-hard fans disapprove of any changes to File Explorer, stating why change anything if it works great. However, it really needed a modern update, and I’m happy to report that the new explorer is working and has all the features you need. You now have new colorful icons, a new context menu, and a command bar at the top that replaces the existing ribbon menu bar.
In fact, for those of you wondering, Microsoft has kept the folder options as well. And you can also get the old context menu (just click on “Show advanced options”). What Windows fans feared did come true with Windows 11, but Microsoft managed to pull it off while keeping all the features intact.
Updated Microsoft Store
The newly developed Microsoft Store is another great new feature in Windows 11. It is built from the ground up and now supports Win32, .NET, UWP, Xamarin, Electron, React Native, Java, and even Progressive Web Apps. You can even find themes and extensions for Microsoft Edge in the new Microsoft Store.
To be honest, I’ve never been a fan of the Microsoft Store due to being sluggish and uncomfortable in the past, but the new one does look great. In the current build, it should be noted that you still cannot view the date when the app was last updated.
Support for Android applications in Windows 11
The main benefit of Windows 11 is that it can now run Android apps based on the Amazon App Store. However, support for Android apps has not been added in the current pre-build 22000.51. Microsoft has confirmed that the ability to install Android apps will appear in future builds. But wait, that’s not all. The best part is that you can even download APKs to your Windows 11 computer. How cool is that?