Windows 11 homepage
Windows 11 homepage

On 24 June 2021 at the Microsoft Event, Microsoft officially previewed Windows 11.

Despite saying that Windows 10 would be the last version of the operating system, its retirement is set for 2025. Windows 11 will be launching on 5 October 2021, with the upgrade free for all existing Windows 10 users*.

Here are some of the key updates from the reveal:

Centralised Start Button and Task Bar

A key design change is a centralised start button; moving from the left of the screen. The taskbar and Start menu will also be centralised. The Start menu will use Microsoft 365 to show you recent files, no matter what platform or device you accessed them on previously.

Windows 11

Snap Layouts

Another visual enhancement is the new snap layouts. You can quite literally ‘snap’ multiple, open windows to different layouts. A small widget appears when you hover over the display icon, allowing you to snap the window to any corner in various layouts.

Multiple Desktops

Within Windows 11, you’ll be able to set up and switch between different desktop layouts. This could include one for home and one for business. Different desktops will not only show different apps but different themes can also be applied.

Multiple Desktops - Windows 11
New Integration with Teams

Teams has grown exponentially over the last 18 months. It’s no surprise that Microsoft want Teams to be a core part of the software moving forward. Therefore, Teams will be built-in from the outset, with a new taskbar shortcut known as Chat from Microsoft Teams. It creates an instant way to message, video call and voice call straight from your taskbar.

Teams Intergration - Windows 11

Android Apps via Amazon App Store

Android Apps typically used on Android operated mobile devices will be able to run on Windows 11.

Android Apps - Windows 11

Overall, we’re looking forward to seeing the changes Windows 11 will bring. Keep scrolling to watch the promo video and see the specs alongside our rollout plan.

 

*Devices will need a certain specification for the upgrade. This includes a minimum of 64 gigabytes of storage and 4 gigabytes of RAM.

Windows 11: Specs, Requirements and Our Rollout Plan

There are minimum system requirements for installing Windows 11. And if these are not met, you may not be able to install it. Here are the system requirements, and feature deprecations and removals from Microsoft:

System Requirements:

To start, your device must be running Windows 10, version 2004 or later, to upgrade.

Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or System on a Chip (SoC).

RAM: 4 gigabyte (GB).

Storage: 64 GB or larger storage device.

Graphics Card: Compatible with DirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driver.

Display: High definition (720p) display that is greater than 9” diagonally, 8 bits per colour channel.

View the full spec

Feature Deprecations and Removals:

When upgrading to Windows 11 from Windows 10, some features may be deprecated or removed. Here are some of the changes Microsoft has shared:

Cortana: will no longer be included in the first boot experience or pinned to the Taskbar.

Desktop wallpaper: cannot be roamed to or from device when signed in with a Microsoft account.

Quick Status: from the Lockscreen and associated settings are removed.

Snipping Tool: continues to be available but the old design and functionality in the Windows 10 version has been replaced with those of the app previously known as Snip & Sketch.

Start: is significantly changed in Windows 11 including the following key deprecations and removals:

  • Named groups and folders of apps are no longer supported and the layout is not currently resizeable.
  • Pinned apps and sites will not migrate when upgrading from Windows 10.
  • Live Tiles are no longer available. For at-a-glance, dynamic content, see the new Widgets feature.

Taskbar is changed including:

  • People is no longer present on the Taskbar.
  • Some icons may no longer appear in the System Tray (systray) for upgraded devices including previous customisations.
  • Alignment to the bottom of the screen is the only location allowed.
  • Apps can no longer customise areas of the Taskbar.

View all deprecations

Our Rollout Plan:

Whilst we are looking forward to seeing the changes Windows 11 will bring, we will be approaching the update with caution. We will not rollout the update to clients immediately. The reason for doing this is to give our engineers time to understand the changes made and iron out any issues as a result of the update.

Additionally, due to the system requirements for the update, we will need to speak to clients individually to review the existing devices and whether they are eligible.

If you are an existing client and have any concerns, please get in touch with our team for a chat.

Latest Guides

Microsoft File Version History
How to Restore a Previous File Version
Looking for a previous version of a file? Here's how to recover it.
Jess speaking into headset at her desk in the Breakwater office.
What is the PSTN Switch Off?
In January 2027, the Public Switch Telephone Network (PSTN) will be switched off.
Microsoft 365 Monthly Feature Update. Microsoft Logo.
Microsoft 365 Monthly Feature Update
Check out our top three Microsoft 365 feature releases each month.