After months of promotion, Windows 11 is set to release. Microsoft has announced that Windows 11 will be available on October 5th 2021, both as a free upgrade for qualifying Windows 10 systems as well as new PC OEM.
Do not assume you will get the upgrade on day one, though. This is a gradual rollout process that will prioritize newer hardware and use “intelligence models” to determine who gets the upgrade first, including reliability and device age factor. All supporting machines will get the update by mid-2022 next year, but this suggests you may be toward the back of the queue if you are using relatively old hardware. At least some shipping Windows 10 PCs will be on the fast track for Windows 11 updates, including models from Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, and Microsoft.
Notably, though, Android app support will not be available on launch. Microsoft now only expects to introduce the feature in a Windows Insider preview build sometime in the “coming months.” That is not completely surprising given the challenges of translating mobile apps to a mouse-and-keyboard experience, but this still means one of Windows 11’s challenging features will not be available for a long while.
The new platform centers on a refreshed interface with a new Start interface, Snap Layouts, widgets, and Teams integration. You will also find a redesigned Microsoft Store that even lets third-party stores operate within its walls. Technology like DirectX 12, DirectStorage, and Auto HDR also promise to help gamers.