Windows 11 is almost here and it’s already starting to divide us

Microsoft announces October 5th release date for Windows 11 and the response is pretty mixed. Again.

Surely we all remember back when Windows 10 was first announced. There was an outcry from many users, claiming that the newest upgrade was simply terrible and they would have much preferred to stick with Windows 7 (as opposed to 8 and 8.1). But it wasn’t meant to be, considering Microsoft ended support for Windows 7 a few months before 10’s release.

Despite the naysayers, the operating system managed to rack up some solid reviews once it was released. That said, people were still critical of a number of key changes – such as mandatory update installations and concerns over privacy and data collection. It wasn’t perfect, but it just about managed to pull through.

windows 11
Image: Microsoft

Yet here we are again, following Microsoft’s latest announcement concerning Windows 11; with a split forming between those who want to opt into the free upgrade and those who would rather be left out entirely.

Windows 11 promises:

  • A new design and new sounds
  • The start button moved to the center of the screen
  • Snap Layouts, Snap Groups and Desktops to maximize screen-space optimization
  • A chat system
  • Widgets
  • The “best Windows ever for gaming”
  • A new Microsoft store
  • Inclusiveness for people with disabilities
  • New opportunities for developers
  • Better speed, efficiency and improved experiences for touch, digital pens and voice input
  • Optimisation for hybrid work (aka. working from home and the office)

That doesn’t sound so bad. In fact, it’ll probably just take a little time to get used to the new layout.

Notably, the announcement mentioned that they “expect all eligible devices to be offered the free upgrade to Windows 11 by mid-2022”. Which sounds like we won’t need to worry about the upgrade until next year in reality.

According to Microsoft, your PC will simply “let you know” when the update is ready, so long as it’s eligible for it. Otherwise, you can check by going to Settings > Windows Update and selecting ‘Check for updates’.

The upgrade will be free for those eligible, and new devices using Microsoft’s operating systems will be coming with Windows 11 already installed. Support will continue for Windows 10 up until October 14th 2025 – so there’s no reason to rush a decision anyway.

Time to wait for those reviews to start coming in.