What will Microsoft’s future system look like?

Windows 12, the successor to Windows 11, could benefit from a completely revamped interface if experts who have seen a strange screenshot are to be believed. The point about Microsoft’s future operating system.

Errors, clumsiness or leaks discreetly organized to feed rumours? Hard to say today. Still, during the Ignite conference that Microsoft held between October 12 and 14, 2022 for developers and IT professionals, experts with particularly sharp vision discovered in the presentations a strange screen capture that could give an idea of ​​what Windows 12, the next PC operating system that will succeed Windows 11. As they explain in their article, Windows Central practitioners have actually believed they recognized an interface prototype that should simplify interactions on the touchscreens of laptops and tablets. And which could serve as a basis for the future system… The image briefly seen was of poor quality, these specialists had fun reconstructing it properly. And even if it is only a concept – a fantasy? –, several key points appear from Microsoft’s supposed projects.

Which interface for Windows 12?

© Zac Bowden – Windows Central

In addition to an obvious general cleanup, which is part of the continuity of the process started for Windows 11, there is thus a greater modularity of the functional elements with even some ideas visibly inspired by macOS. The taskbar with its icons centered is still there, but it appears to be removable so it can be placed anywhere on the screen. Status icons (Wi-Fi, battery, time) appear on the top right, just like on a smartphone. And weather information is displayed in the upper left corner. While a floating search box – and similar to Spotlight on the Mac – is in the middle, at the top, independent of the taskbar. In fact, everything seems softer and designed for hybrid use, both for touchscreen and for the classic keyboard-mouse pair.

When will Windows 12 be released?

Of course, Microsoft has not commented on this concept image, and nothing says that the publisher is really looking in this direction. But we can rightly assume that designers and ergonomists in Redmond are seriously working on the interface of the future system to make it clearer, more practical and more pleasant, taking into account the mistakes of the past – Windows Vista, Windows 8… – and new user expectations and habits. So far, we don’t know anything official about Windows 12. Windows Central experts expect a release in 2024, but Microsoft seems to be mainly focusing on Windows 11, which is still struggling to implement, a year after its release, mainly due to its hardware requirements – especially since the big October 2022 update, known as 22H2, is being released in dribbles, with many issues still unresolved. The road will undoubtedly be long before we present a successful successor, both reliable and innovative.

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