Hands on: Windows 11’s new Search UI is here, but accuracy issues remain a concern

Windows 11 new Search

A new interface for Windows 11’s Search started rolling out to
users alongside
April 2022 cumulative update and it’s now available for
more people. The new interface comes with a feature called
‘search highlights’ which aims to highlight fresh content like
illustrations and facts or trending topics from Bing.

The Search highlights are powered by Bing and they would change
frequently to help users learn new topics and discover trending
items. For example, today is World Penguin Day and Windows
Search will present notable facts related to Penguins.
Likewise, Search will also highlight moments like holidays or
other events globally and in your region.

Microsoft says it wants to deliver “rich, bold and interactive”
content to users via Windows Search and search highlights will
see further enhancements in the coming months. The aim is to
share fun illustrations from Bing and help you discover new
facts to keep you connected and productive.

Windows 11 Search interface

Thankfully, it is possible to turn off the search highlights
from Windows Settings. When you turn off the search highlights
(Bing suggestions), Windows Search will show suggested apps,
quick searches from Bing, and top apps.

Windows 11 Search Settings

As you can see in the above and below screenshots, the Search
interface is evolving to become more like a Start menu that
makes finding certain stuff much easier and faster. For
example, you can easily find apps on the homepage of the search
without having to search the app in the taskbar or Start.

Windows 11 Search

Furthermore, Microsoft promises the improve experience by
personalizing the experience by taking inputs from your work
and school accounts.

Unfortunately, Windows 11’s Search still doesn’t support
reverse search functionality which was offered on Windows 10.

Windows Search accuracy problem

Windows Search is not flawless and it often fails to display
the correct item in the search results. For example, search
shows results from the web while ignoring the local results
when users search for apps. This has proved that the Bing
integration isn’t always the best idea.

Microsoft officials have confirmed that the company is working
to improve Windows Search and one of the latest preview builds
includes additional fixes to make search faster.

“Searching for apps and settings in the Windows search box on
the taskbar is now even faster and more accurate than before,”
Microsoft said.

While there’s no denying that search is now slightly better in
the latest builds, it is still buggy and sometimes it is unable
to present accurate results related to the search query.

Windows Search accuracy
Image Courtesy: Reddit

In the above example, Windows Search shows the Steam app setup
file in results rather than the app itself.

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