Windows 11 is slated for another major update later in 2023. While we have a good idea of what’s coming alongside the OS, it looks like Microsoft is working on a few new exciting features recently thanks to the preview build release notes. have been discovered in the test versions.
A new volume mixer
The fastest way to change the volume of individual apps and browsers is to click the volume icon to open the volume mixer. Windows 11 volume mixer is only accessible through the Settings app, which allows you to change the volume of open browsers or apps to make a specific app louder.
Fortunately, Microsoft is finally testing a new modern volume mixer that can be accessed directly from the taskbar, similar to Windows 10’s volume mixer.
The tech giant has not spoken publicly about this new volume mixer and it is hidden in the code.
As you can see in the screenshot above, you can quickly decrease or increase the volume of open apps while making music apps like Spotify louder. Of course, you can also mute any app to make another app or system sound louder. The idea is to make sound management easier within Windows 10.
Windows 11’s new volume mixer is hidden and not available for public testing. That’s because it’s still a work in progress and Microsoft isn’t ready to talk about it yet.
Experimental tool: a new way to unlock features?
Microsoft is testing a new option called “AllowExperimentalFeatures” on the Windows Update -> Windows Insider Program page.
As the name suggests, it looks like AllowExperimentalFeatures might finally allow testers in the Windows Insider program to enable features that have been disabled by the company.
The implementation is not finished yet, but there is one opportunity this could become an official way to enable hidden features in the operating system when A/B testing is not enough.
A new file explorer with deeper Microsoft 365 ties
Windows 11 also gets a new file explorer with an XAML-based start page and Microsoft 365 integration.
The new homepage closely follows the style of Windows 11 with more rounded corners over the address and search bar. At a glance, the redesigned file explorer looks more like the Microsoft 365 dashboard or web browser than a traditional file manager.
There’s a new “recommended files” tab that Microsoft 365 uses to suggest similar files when you select a file. File Explorer can also show email threads, comments, conversations between teammates, and when the file was shared with colleagues.
According to sources, Microsoft is toying with the idea of bringing Microsoft 365 features to File Explorer.
This is not possible with the existing shell, so the new file explorer uses the web-based XAML design, allowing users to access Microsoft 365 content directly within the file management interface and organize everything with a new feature called “tags”.
Windows 11 is getting a new file explorer, modern volume mixer, and more in a future update https://t.co/u9LQ7pWIbM #Windows11 pic.twitter.com/QQmXiib06z
— Mayank Parmar (@mayank_jee) January 29, 2023
Microsoft is still working on the new File Explorer and plans are subject to change, but the deeper integration of Microsoft 365 into Windows 11 appears to be the company’s long-term plan.