You Can Do 11 Things in Windows 11 That You Couldn’t Do Before

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Windows 11: It’s here.
Image: Microsoft – Microsoft’s new operating system has just been released, and here are all of the new features that aren’t available in Windows 10. Windows 11 is currently being rolled out, with brand new PCs and newer technology being the first to receive it. You may have to wait a few months if you’re on an older system to see an upgrade choice.

Before you install Windows 11, make sure to read our article on how to upgrade to Windows 11. While all of your apps and files should be unaffected by the software upgrade, it’s always a good idea to double-check that backups are in place in case something goes wrong. It’s usually a good idea to hold off on upgrading for a bit in case there are issues that weren’t detected in the OS beta.

Here’s everything you’ll receive in Windows 11 that you won’t get in Windows 10 if you’re trying to determine whether or not to update (although we have a few workarounds for that, too).

1) Make use of Snap Layouts.

You may drag open windows to the side or corner of the screen to ‘snap’ them in place and organize your programs alongside each other, much as in Windows 10, but Windows 11 takes it a step further. To display a list of preconfigured layouts, place your mouse over the maximize/minimize button on a window or press Win+Z. The configurations available may vary depending on the width of your display, but the function is now considerably simpler to use.

2) Manage Multiple Desktops More Effortlessly

Virtual desktops (referred to as Desktops by Microsoft) were previously available in Windows 10, but they’re now far easier to use and find in Windows 11. After installing the new OS, you’ll see a Desktops button on the taskbar by default (the icon showing two rectangles). To make more room on your desktop, hover over it and select New desktop. Desktops provide greater space for your programs without the need for additional physical monitors.

You can create multiple desktops right from the taskbar.
Screenshot: Windows 11

3) Directly from the Start Menu, open files

One of the first changes you’ll notice in Windows 11 is the new Start menu, which now serves as a center for your file and browsing history as well as a list of program shortcuts. Whether or not you utilize Microsoft (Office) 365 and how many Windows 11 PCs you have synchronized across the cloud will determine which files you view, so keep an eye out for them. To configure the function, go to Personalization and Start from Windows Settings.

4) Use the Clock App to Stay Focused

The Clock app in Windows 11 can help you stay focused for certain hours of work or study. Open the Clock app, then select Focus sessions from the left-hand panel: When you click Get started, you’ll be sent to a page where you can set up your tasks and deadlines. This also works with Windows 11’s To Do app, and you can add tunes from a Spotify playlist to help you remain focused.

Microsoft Teams is built right into Windows 11.
Screenshot: Windows 11

5) Connect to Microsoft Teams Quickly

Fans of Microsoft’s Slack rival, rejoice! Microsoft is promoting Teams as the major method to keep in touch with friends, family, and coworkers in Windows 11—it’s right there on the taskbar when you upgrade the OS—and Microsoft is pushing it as the primary way to stay in touch with friends, family, and coworkers (sorry, Skype). If you’ve never used Microsoft Teams before, go to the first screen and click Get started to connect with others via video, audio, or text chat.

6) Appreciate More Modern-Appearing Windows

With Windows 11, the software’s graphics have been completely overhauled, making everything seem much more modern and tailored particularly for today’s devices (rather than, say, the 1990s). When compared to Windows 10, there is greater use of space, color, and iconography in File Explorer and Windows Settings, for example, making it more appealing overall.

7) Get More Battery Usage Statistics

In Windows 11, go to Windows Settings, System, and Power & battery, and you’ll see a more thorough breakdown of how your battery is draining—select Battery use for even more facts. It’s part of a drive to make Windows better on tablets and 2-in-1 devices, which includes a touchscreen-friendly interface (more clarity and space with the visuals, larger menu buttons, and so on).

The redesigned Microsoft Store.
Screenshot: Windows 11

8) Check out the Microsoft App Store’s New and Improved Features

With Windows 11, the Microsoft Store gets a new and improved appearance, greater curation, and deeper integration with digital content like movies. Even though the actual programs are still hit-or-miss, it’s now simpler to navigate around—expect further changes in the coming months, particularly in the area of gaming, which Microsoft is promoting in Windows 11.

9) Make it simpler to use secondary displays

The way secondary displays are recognized is one of the enhancements in Windows 11 that you might not notice right away. The program should now remember how your windows were organized on an external monitor, so if you disconnect and rejoin it, the program windows should revert to their former arrangement. It’s a little adjustment, but it’ll come in useful for anyone who works with several monitors.

Make sure your external display settings get remembered.
Screenshot: Windows 11

10) Widgets on the Taskbar

In Windows 10, widgets appeared as a pop-up window next to the notification area, but in Windows 11, they have their own icon on the taskbar, and there are more to choose from. To access news, weather, upcoming calendar appointments, advice for using Windows 11, and more, click the taskbar icon. To do so, use the Add widgets option; you’ll be able to choose which widgets display on the screen and which don’t.

11) Make Android Apps Work

This functionality isn’t accessible right now, but when Microsoft eventually releases the update, Windows 11 will be able to run Android applications from the Amazon Appstore. For the time being, we don’t know when that will happen, but we do know that they’ll function similarly to regular Windows apps—for example, you should be able to snap them to the screen boundaries or pin them to the taskbar.