Microsoft has yet to announce the official release date for Windows 11 22H2, the next feature update, but two reports indicate it will happen on September 20.
Microsoft was expected to release Windows 11 22H2 in September or October but, according to Windows Central, it will drop on September 20, shipping as build 22621, which is currently in testing. Per The Verge, that date falls one week after that month’s Patch Tuesday.
Microsoft has been testing Windows 11 22H2 for the past few months, but users on the current version in the Beta and Dev Channels may have gotten to try some of the new features, such as the Live Captions and Voice Access accessibility features, Suggested Actions, a redesigned Task Manager, tabbed File Explorer, OneDrive integration with File Explorer, and more.
The Beta Channel receives preview builds of Windows 11 with features more likely to arrive in the 22H2 release.
Windows 11 22H2 will be available as a free update for Windows 11 users.
According to Windows Central, 22H2 will feature a modern interface, including redesigned volume and brightness sliders that were testing in January. Focus Assist/’Do Note Disturb’ settings will be integrated into the Notification Center.
Apparently tabs in File Explorer and Suggested Actions weren’t finalised in time for the 22H2 launch, and instead will arrive in its first ‘Moment’ update ‘shortly after’ its release. The Suggested Actions feature gives users prompts for the next steps to take based on the current app and task. Copying a date, for example, may trigger a suggestion to create a calendar item. Copying a phone number might prompt the user to call that number.
As ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley explained recently, ‘Moments’ is Microsoft’s term for rolling out new features outside of major OS updates. It remains unclear whether a Moment release would trigger a new support countdown clock.
Taskbar is regaining the ability to drag and drop files into app icons — functionality that wasn’t in the original version of Windows 11.
Microsoft has added more ways to snap windows in its Snap Layouts option, which originally let users snap windows into side-by-side arrangements. In previews, users could drag windows to the top of the screen to see the snap layouts and then drop the window on top of a zone to snap it.
Microsoft has updated its Settings app with a new Microsoft Account page that provides an overview of your Microsoft 365 subscription.
Also coming to Windows 22H2 are Microsoft’s new Family safety app and the Clipchamp video-editing app as part of the ‘inbox apps’ that ship with Windows 11. Family safety offers parental controls and family location tracking.
This year is also the 10th anniversary of Microsoft’s Surface line of hardware, spanning Surface Pro and Go tablets, 2-in-1s, several Surface laptops, the Surface Studio desktop, and Android-powered dual-screen Surface Duo. The Verge sources say Microsoft is planning to launch new products this autumn, and they’ll likely ship with Windows 11 22H2.