What’s this about Windows 11?
It kinda snuck up on us, this new build of Windows. The Windows 11 Operating System was originally announced in June 2021. This is the first major Operating System launched by Microsoft since their popular Windows 10 release back in 2015. Right off the bat most users will notice a dramatic redesign of the interface which now focuses on ease of use and flexibility, with lots of personalisation options to make your Windows 11 experience unique to your specific use. There are also integrated enhancements to boost productivity and social features as well as a core focus on updates to security and accessibility.
So… what’s new?
- Cleaner interface – Microsoft have tried to remove the clutter that tends to creep into the today’s feature packed systems and have developed window snapping and layout options to make better use of screen real estate..
- Virtual desktops – run applications in its own desktop space, and switch between them to help stay focused on your tasks.
- Widgets – remember how cool those gadgets were in windows 7? They’re back! Kinda. In widget form. Similar to Live Tiles, and the News and Interests taskbar items we now have relevant widgets which update in real time.
- Integrations all over the place – Teams, SharePoint and other Microsoft products play nice with each other right out of the box. Input support for voice, touch, touch pen and accessibility devices. Loads of hardware optimisations for gaming and the Game Pass platform!
- Android support – Microsoft are adding the ability to natively run Android apps directly within Windows 11.
Here is a very quick intro video. We have skipped a bit to bring you straight to the features.
When is it out?
The 5th of October. A free upgrade to Windows 11 will begin rolling out to eligible Windows 10 PCs. This is similar to the upgrade path which Microsoft presented to Windows 7/8/8.1 users to onboard to Windows 10. Additionally, devices with Windows 11 preloaded will be available to purchase to our clients. If you are an existing user check out the availability of stock at our online store or give us a call on 1300 879 226.
What does it cost?
$0. It’s free! Windows 11 is available as a free upgrade for Windows 10 users. It will be available as a standalone purchase for users who don’t already have Windows 10 installed. It will also be bundled in with new end user hardware with a downgrade available to Windows 10 if you’re not a fan.
Should I upgrade?
In our professional experienced IT opinion the answer is… maybe.
Some users are inclined to jump right on to the newest update, or the newest hardware or the newest app. In the industry we call these people “early adopters”. Many of A Corp’s staff are early adopters (Joel is still a big fan of the Microsoft Zune), and we are always eager to learn what new technology has to offer so we can provide better insights and support to our customers.
That being said, there’s a lot of truth to the old adage “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it”. There are certainly inherent risks with any new system if untested in your environment, and we would recommend a rollback plan and staggered deployment if you are considering a move to Windows 11. Initially we might suggest a pilot group for testing to ensure that your staff don’t lose any core functionality required to perform daily duties.
A Corp can assist with upgrading, and a backup strategy for desktops to revert to should the Windows 11 upgrade introduce any showstopping issue.
If you’re using purely cloud based services then you might be inclined to switch. Just know that any desktop based apps like PDF editors, accounting packages, etc may have compatibility issues with the new version of Windows while the dust settles.
Now how about that IllumiRoom, Microsoft?