Improving Windows 11’s visual and functional consistency is shaping up to be a major priority for Microsoft this year, as evinced by the continued updates to core apps like Notepad, Paint, and Media Player, as well as the ongoing effort to move advanced settings out of the old Windows 7-era Control Panels and into the modern Settings app. Restoring some flexibility to redesigned areas of the OS like the Start menu and Taskbar has also been a focus.
The latest Windows 11 Insider build released to Dev channel users continues this work, updating the overlays for volume, brightness, and other settings to match Windows 11’s more rounded look. The new indicators pop up in the bottom center of your screen rather than the top left, will match your light or dark mode setting, and, like the Start menu and taskbar, they use Mica styling to match the color of your desktop wallpaper.
The other changes in this preview build are pretty small; “Apps and Features” in the Windows + X shortcut menu has been relabeled as “Installed apps,” the Voice Access accessibility feature can be pinned to the Taskbar and Start menu, and the Clock app can be uninstalled. Exciting times!
We don’t know when the changes currently being tested in the Dev channel will make it out to the general public—Microsoft has pushed some changes out as part of smaller Windows updates, and many app updates now come through the Microsoft Store. Others might have to wait for Windows 11’s first major servicing update, version 22H2, which will be released later this year.