Before the iPhone came along and ushered in a new era of mobile computing, new desktop releases from Microsoft and Apple were incredibly exciting. These days, however, new Windows and OS X releases have lost a bit of their luster given everyone’s preoccupation with smartphones. Still, that’s not to say that desktop releases are completely uninteresting.
On the contrary, Apple continues to iterate with macOS and Microsoft is still plugging away at Windows, even as the company has expanded its reach into a myriad of other areas like search and cloud computing. In fact, Microsoft is preparing to take the wraps off of Windows 11 at a special event scheduled for Thursday, June 24 at 11:00 AM Eastern.
According to various leaks, Windows 11 will feature an interesting visual overhaul to an operating system that hasn’t changed that drastically over the years. Perhaps the biggest visual change is that the Start Menu and taskbar are now centered on the bottom of the screen, as evidenced by the photo below provided courtesy of DigitalTrends.
It’s a stark and jarring change, to be sure.
No one hates change more than dedicated tech users and, in turn, many people haven’t been shy about expressing their displeasure with respect to the new Start Menu orientation.
An illustrative Reddit comment that sprung up recently notes:
What a joke this build is. This is about bad as their Windows 10X emulator. I truly hope this build is fake just to throw everyone off till next week.
And another comment, this one from Twitter, reads:
The thing I hate the most about windows 11 is the start menu. Specially the fact that you can’t hide the recommended section. Tbh w10 has a better start menu than 11, although w7 has the best one ever
That said, it’s worth noting that it’s not too hard to adjust the alignment back to “normal” if you so choose.
For outraged folks, you can change the Taskbar alignment too. pic.twitter.com/8YZIXRoMAc
— Rafael Rivera (@WithinRafael) June 15, 2021
All in all, with Windows 11 boasting a tweaked UI and rounded corners, I’m actually liking the way it looks. Overall, it just looks cleaner and more refined compared to previous iterations of Windows. Dare I say, Windows 11 has a little bit of a macOS vibe going on, and I personally think it’s a step in the right direction.
And while we’re on the topic of Windows, it’s worth noting that Microsoft is planning to end support for Windows 10 in 2025.
According to Paul Thurrott, official support will end on October 14, 2025:
A Microsoft support document has been edited to explain that support for Windows 10 Home and Pro ends on October 14, 2025. This is the first time Microsoft has ever described the end of support for Windows 10; previously, it documented only when specific Windows 10 versions would leave support.
This may literally mean that the “Next Generation Windows” that Microsoft will reveal next week is, in fact, not Windows 10, at least from a marketing/branding perspective. And that it will be named Windows 11, Windows Sun Valley, or some other name not related to Windows 10.
Suffice it to say, Microsoft’s special event on Thursday will be interesting, to say the least.