Microsoft has announced the roll-out of a number of improvements to Windows 11 which they have been testing with Insiders to regular Windows 11 users.
Amazon App Store
The biggest is the roll-out of the Amazon App Store and its Android apps to regular Windows 11 users.
Microsoft says the Store, which is integrated into the Microsoft Store, will bring 1,000 Android apps to Windows 11, including titles such as Audible, Kindle, Subway Surfers, Lords Mobile, Khan Academy Kids and many more.
The feature is built on Intel’s Bridge Technology, integrate naturally with Windows input and supports native windowing experiences, like Snap layouts.
Currently, the Store is only available to Windows 11 users in USA, but Microsoft will look to broaden availability with the Amazon Appstore later this year. It also requires at least 8 GB of RAM, a solid-state drive (SSD), and a supported processor (Intel® Core™ i3 8th Generation, AMD Ryzen™ 3000, Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 8c, or above).
New enhancements to the Taskbar
Microsoft also announced a number of improvements to the Windows 11 Taskbar. These include:
New Mute/unmute button
A new Mute/unmute button in the taskbar will be available during an active call on the right side of your Taskbar. You can easily toggle audio on and off without having to return to the call window so you can quickly reply or mute, even if your Teams app is not visible.
Share any window from the Taskbar
The Share windows button is instantly accessible from your Taskbar. Simply hover over the app icon on your Taskbar to launch the share control, then confirm you’re ready to share it live. This will help you confidently share just the content you mean to share and nothing more. The features are available to Microsoft Teams users with a work or school accounts.
Weather on the Taskbar
Microsoft has updated the entry point to Widgets to show live weather content in the left-hand corner of your Taskbar, so your weather is always up to date and available at a glance.
Clock on a second monitor
Now when a secondary monitor is connected, your clock and date will now be shown on the Taskbar of the secondary monitor or monitors for glanceability as you work or play.
New and updated apps.
The newly redesigned Media Player app replaces the Groove Music app and was created to make listening to and watching your multimedia content more enjoyable.
At the heart of Media Player is a full-featured music library that allows you to quickly browse and play music, as well as create and manage playlists. All your content in the music and video folders on your PC will appear automatically in your library, and you can also tell Media Player where to look for additional content in app settings. Media Player is optimized for accessibility, with improved keyboard shortcuts and access keys for keyboard users as well as with other assistive technologies. Media Player replaces the Groove Music app; if your music collection is in Groove Music today, your library and playlists will migrate automatically.
The Notepad app features a redesigned user interface with new design features from Windows 11, including a new dark mode, so the app feels more cohesive with your Windows experience. If your default system theme is Dark Mode, Notepad will automatically adopt the dark theme, or you can also select the app theme manually from the new settings page. Menus have also been simplified to make it easier to find the actions you want to take in the app, and we’ve added new highly requested features like multi-level undo, colorful emojis, and a modern and efficient find-and-replace experience. To get the redesigned Media Player and Notepad apps, visit the Microsoft Store.
Microsoft says as the PC continues to play a more meaningful role in our lives, they will continue to evolve Windows 11 as a connection point between people, ideas and creations.