One of the biggest Microsoft announcements to come out in a while is about a new successor to Windows 10. Windows 11 is coming later this year and will mean a significant user experience and productivity upgrade for business IT workflows.

Windows 11 is not quite as major an upgrade as Windows 10 was. It builds on the benefits of that operating system and introduces a simplified, distraction-free design. It also includes several features designed to help users do things faster and overcome common frustrations, such as how to size three windows open on a screen so they’re all usable.

There are several things that Tucson businesses need to do to prepare for a smooth upgrade when the new OS rolls out. We’ll go over those as well as features, timing expectations, system requirements, and more.

What Are the Best New Windows 11 Features? 

Teams Calling Right from the Desktop

Video meetings have grown into an everyday occurrence thanks to the pandemic. Teams in Microsoft 365 has been one of the most popular apps being adopted to facilitate those virtual meetings.

Between April 2020 and April 2021, Microsoft Teams gained over 100 million more users.

Windows 11 natively integrates Teams and includes an icon for the app on the taskbar. You’ll also see the capability to connect with someone via video, audio, or chat in a click without needing to open the full Teams app.

All Windows 11 images are from Microsoft

Arrange Windows With Ease with Snap Layouts

Arranging between two to four windows on your screen at once is going to be easier in Windows 11, the OS includes a snap layouts feature that will optimize the view. Users have a choice of six different snap layout options.

Start Menu Changes: Simplified & Streamlined

The Start menu goes through a radical change from what you’re used to in Windows 10. It’s been stripped down and streamlined to make it simpler to use.

The search box that used to be on the taskbar is now at the top of the Start menu. Additionally, the Windows icon for the Start menu has been moved to the middle of the taskbar, which may take some users a while to get used to.

Customize a News & App Widget Feed

Windows 11 adds a personalized feed for the user that is powered by widgets. This is similar to the widget feed used on an iPhone.

Users can access their feed from the desktop and can include a variety of different widgets, such as:

  • Weather
  • Headlines
  • Calendar
  • Bing search
  • ToDo 
  • Stocks
  • And more

Windows Voice Typing & Better Accessibility 

Windows 11 includes several enhancements to accessibility. You’ll see updated closed captions, a new sound control center, color filters, and more.

Windows Voice Typing will also be introduced in the OS. This transcription tool adds punctuation automatically as you speak. 

Windows 11 Systems Requirements & How to Check a PC 

Windows 11 is a free upgrade for users that run Windows 10, however, it does have different requirements. You need to ensure your PC has the minimum system requirements for Windows 11 before you try to upgrade.

Those requirements include:

  • 1GHz processor with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64-bit processor or SoC
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 64GB or larger storage space
  • UEFI, Secure Boot capable firmware
  • Trusted Platform Module (TPM) version 2.0
  • Graphics card compatible with DirectX 12 or later
  • High definition (720p) display that is great than 9”
  • Internet connection

You can easily check to see if a device is compatible by downloading and running Microsoft’s PC Health Check tool.

What Should Your Business Do To Prepare for the Upgrade?

Check Device Compatibility

You’ll want to check the compatibility of all your devices with a Windows 11 upgrade so you can plan for any needed PC replacements for older systems. 

Check Software & Hardware Compatibility

You’ll want to make sure that the components in your technology infrastructure are compatible with a Windows 11 upgrade. This includes software and any hardware (like printers or other peripherals) you may be using.

If you use custom software that needs to be updated for compatibility before you can upgrade, you may want to have the developer get started on that as soon as possible. 

Pre-Schedule the Upgrade With Your IT Provider

According to Microsoft, Windows 11 will come out around the holidays this year and possibly be rolled out into 2022. However, there is a rumor out there about an October release because some press images for the OS have an October 2021 date on the taskbar.

Once the OS does come out, upgrade schedules are going to be filling up fast for office upgrades. It’s best to pre-schedule your upgrade now so you can choose the best timing for your needs to ensure you can take advantage of the new OS as soon as possible and minimize office downtime.

Pre-Schedule Your Windows 11 Office Upgrade Today

SimpleMSP can help your business ensure a smooth upgrade to Windows 11, train your users on the new OS, and minimize any disruption during the transition.

We’re here and ready to talk Windows 11 with you!