Microsoft says it will revolutionize Windows 10 user experience

Windows 10 visual revamp

Microsoft’s getting ready for some “radical” Windows 10 design
changes, according to a series of job listings spotted by us.

Microsoft has been working on a major design overhaul for a
while, and the
company quietly confirmed a “reinvigorating” update in a
job posting earlier this year. There aren’t many details being
shared about “Sun Valley” right now, but we’ve learned that the
new visual look will focus on rounded corners, Windows 10X-like
features and transitions.

In the new job listing, which was published earlier this month
and spotted by us over the weekend, Microsoft confirmed that it
wants to dramatically change the user experience of the Windows
platform in the coming years.

The job listing has been posted
by Microsoft’s Interactive eXperiences Platform (IXP) Team,
which is responsible for the UX of Windows and Windows apps.
The team is behind the core composition, rendering and input
platforms for the Start Menu, Office, Microsoft Edge and native
Windows apps.

“We also own much of the Win32 API and infrastructure
underlying all Windows features and apps. This team brought
Touch to Windows, Precision Touchpads to Windows Laptops, and
Windows Ink to the 2:1 device,” the job listing reads.

“We are now on a multi-year journey to revolutionize the
Windows UX platform by delivering best interactive experiences,
showcasing cutting-edge hardware,” the company noted in a job
listing, which is still live on its website as of May 24.

As per the job listing, Microsoft Program Manager will
apparently work with the Project Reunion team to “define,
design, plan, build major improvements to the Windows UX
platform”.

In another job listing, which is no longer available,
Microsoft’s team responsible for windowing experience also
confirmed that it’s on a “multi-year journey to re-imagine this
platform with the goal of enabling the best interactive
experiences on Windows”.

“Your work will influence and shape the look and feel of
Windows: you will help us change the world,” the second job
listing reads.

File Explorer icons
New icons, touch-friendly File Explorer

The basic concept is to improve overall design consistency,
animation, enable rounded corners, and support for new
features. As spotted in the preview builds, Microsoft is also
working on
new icons, fonts and gestures experience for Windows.

The Sun Valley Update is also based on WinUI/Project Reunion
features and it hopes to make it easier for developers to
create attractive apps with rounded corners.

What to expect in the next big update

Windows 10 version 21H2, otherwise known as Sun Valley update,
will modernize a host of Windows 10 UI features, including
Action Center, Taskbar, Start Menu, Flyouts, native apps, etc
with consistent modern designs, rounded corners, and improved
performance.

Action Center update
Action Center with Windows 10X-like UI features in Windows 10
preview builds

As you can see in the above example,
some changes are already live in the preview builds but
they’re hidden behind experimental flags.

Likewise, we’ve also spotted a
floating jump list menu for the taskbar in one of the
latest preview builds.

Jump list UI
Rounded corners in preview builds

These changes are set to roll out near the end of 2021 and the
Sun Valley refresh should extend to all Windows 10 form factor
including workstations, desktops, tablets, 2-in-1s, etc.

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