There is now more and more evidence that Microsoft is doing away with Windows 10 in favor of a new version of Windows even after saying that Windows 10 would be the last version of the operating system ever released.
The new version of Windows – which appears to be Windows 11 – has been leaked online, according to widely reported news across several tech-related publications.
This is coupled with Microsoft updating its end-of-life dates for versions of Windows 10 to include the entire Home and Pro versions of the operating system that was promised to last forever, save for large biannual updates.
According to that updated product lifecycle page, Windows 10 Home and Pro will be retired on October 14, 2025 – about 10 years since the OS was first released.
Microsoft is holding a virtual event later this month to disclose more information about this new version of Windows, and the IT giant has stayed silent about any details.
— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) June 15, 2021
However, a downloadable version of the new operating system has appeared on forums, and the changes appear to be cosmetic and focused on the user experience. For admin-related changes, we’ll probably have to wait to hear more about this OS and upgrading to it from Microsoft late this month.
Based on leaks and reporting, here is what we know so far:
- The taskbar icons have been moved to the center, making the operating system appear similar to ChromeOS or MacOS. It can be moved back to the left, however.
- New setup experiences that walk users through new hardware or upgrading to Windows 11.
- An updated Start menu without Live Tiles that includes pinned apps, recent files and more.
- A new Windows logo with four rectangles.
- Redesigned Windows icons.
- Windows have rounded corners.
- More options about how you want to lock the window in place, including in a grid view or side by side another app.
- New wallpapers.
Public reporting, including from The Verge, suggests that Windows 11 reuses large parts of the cancelled Windows 10X OS that was originally designed for dual-screen devices.
The download is an early version of the new OS, so we’ll have to wait and see what Microsoft has in store for changes that could impact the way IT professionals work.
These developments come after Microsoft has started teasing a new version of Windows and after the company announced a live event on June 24 about the future of the operating system.