Windows 11 taskbar is a downgrade, but it’ll eventually get better

Windows 11 taskbar downgrade

If you’re lucky enough to meet the requirements for Windows 11,
you’ll be losing some taskbar features when you upgrade to the
new operating system.

The new version of Windows 11 is based on modern WinUI, XAML
and UWP components. It will sport a
new File Explorer, Start Menu, Action Center, enhancements
to Windows desktop apps interface, rounded corners, new context
menus, faster performance, hardened security, and a centered
taskbar.

While this is certainly a huge Windows update, it does come
with a few small caveats. For one, you’ll be losing some
important taskbar features. In Windows 11, the taskbar has been
modernized and it’s based on UWP (XAML), and it has been
rewritten. As a result, the taskbar’s default functionality is
currently limited and its location cannot be changed.

Windows 11 taskbar functionality is restricted to the bottom of
the display and you cannot move it to the top, left or right
side of the screen. This was officially confirmed in
Microsoft’s documentation.

Likewise, Windows 11 doesn’t allow users to drag and drop
apps/shortcuts onto taskbar. On Windows 10 and earlier, you can
drag and drop apps from desktop or Explorer to taskbar, and
Windows will automatically generate a shortcut.

Taskbar drag and drop

Unfortunately, this feature is no longer supported, at least
for now.

Windows taskbar now includes support for a new feature called
“snap groups”, which lets you easily switch back to the snapped
windows. This new multitasking experience is visible when you
snap together two or more apps and hover over open apps on the
taskbar.

While snap groups may be a nice feature if you frequently snap
apps together, it’s can also be annoying.

Taskbar groups

At the moment, Windows doesn’t allow the un-grouping of taskbar
icons.

Similarly, some icons (depending on the apps) may no longer
appear in the system tray after updating to Windows 11 and
certain apps can no longer customize areas of the Taskbar,
according to Microsoft documents.

Taskbar context menu

In the preview builds, Microsoft is experimenting with moving
all taskbar context menu (right-click menu) options to the
Settings app.

Taskbar context menu

This move would further streamline the experience and reduce
the clutter, but it could be a problem for users who haven’t
activated Windows. In the unactivated copy of Windows,
it’s not possible to access personalization options.

On unactivated PCs, you can still customize Windows using
Registry editor, although there’s no guarantee that this will
remain the case.

Microsoft is listening to feedback

Microsoft officials confirmed that they’re listening to the
feedback from the Windows Insiders, so it’s likely that some of
these missing features will be restored in the final build of
the operating system, but there’s no guarantee.

It’s important to note that modernization of the taskbar is
necessary to improve the flyout, system tray and notification
center experience. In theory, this is a step in the right
direction, but it may result in the removal of some features,
at least for now.

Windows 11 is currently in the final stages of development and
it will begin rolling out to eligible consumers later this
year. For those with unsupported devices, Microsoft says it’ll
continue to support
Windows 10 with version 21H2 and other updates, but big
changes will remain exclusive to the new OS.

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