These 6 core applications will be changed on Windows 11

Tram Ho

Expected to officially launch in October, Windows 11 not only changes the interface of the operating system, but also changes the interface of some Windows applications. So far, Microsoft has introduced a number of apps they’re reworking for Windows 11, including what you might consider core Windows apps: Mail and Calendar, Paint, and even the Clock app.

Here’s what to expect about these apps in Windows 11. Of course, keep in mind that Windows 11 is in beta. Things may change between now and the final release.

Windows 11 Clock

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Microsoft has significantly improved the Clock app on Windows 11, adding Focus Sessions with Spotify integration.

Perhaps the most unexpected update to Windows 11’s core suite of apps is the little-noticed Clock app. Now, in addition to the usual timers, alarms, stopwatches, and world clocks, Microsoft has added Focus Sessions and Microsoft To-Do.

Microsoft describes Focus Sessions as a new flagship feature. If you’re the type of person who focuses best when listening to music, you’ll love Focus Sessions and its integration with Spotify. Focus Sessions allows you to create a focused interval, with a countdown timer. In Focus Sessions, you can connect your account to Spotify and have it play classical, instrumental,… whatever helps you focus. There’s also a mute button, in case you get a call.

The Clock app also integrates with Microsoft To-Do, so you can do and mark tasks complete. Finally, you’ll even be able to configure in Microsoft Rewards to set a daily goal and then complete that goal day in and day out.

Windows 11 Paint

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Paint application on Windows 11 updated with a more intuitive interface

Microsoft Paint is still there after it was thought to be dead in 2017. In 2019, Microsoft said Paint will still be part of Windows 10.


Microsoft’s product manager, Panos Panay, decided to introduce a new interface to Paint in Windows 11, affirming that Paint continues to exist. In a video, Panay revealed Paint will get a new look, but probably won’t get any new features. However, this shows that Microsoft is still interested in Paint.

Windows 11 Calculator

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The Windows calculator app (photo taken from Windows 11) hides some powerful features like this graphing calculator

Calculator is an amazingly powerful tool that not many people know about its potential in Windows 10, most people just use it for simple calculations. Inside it is a graphing calculator, expand the window of the application to use all its functions, it is capable of converting measurements and currencies, a scientific calculator details, etc.

None of that functionality seems to change with Windows 11, but the app will include a new theme setting. It’s also been rewritten in C#, which Microsoft says will be a way to allow the community to contribute to the app on GitHub, code in new features, and update the app more often over time.

Windows 11 Snipping Tool

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Snipping Tool has a dark mode

Anyone who regularly takes screenshots should know that Microsoft doesn’t have one, but two tools to do so: the old Snipping Tool and the newer Snip & Sketch. For years, Microsoft posted an announcement in the old app that it would be replaced by Snip & Sketch… but now that doesn’t seem to be the case.

“Both the old Snipping Tool and Snip & Sketch apps have been replaced with a new Snipping Tool app, representing the best of both apps in the next evolution of the screenshot tool for for Windows,” Dave Grochocki, head of the Windows applications program, said in a blog post.

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Panay introduced a revamped Snipping Tool that uses the Snip & Sketch keyboard shortcut (Win + Shift + S) but doesn’t change other crop options. Aesthetically, the app now has rounded corners and Windows 11-style visual cues — even a dark mode. There will be some additional editing tools for annotations and improved cropping.

Windows 11 Mail and Calendar

Last but not least are Windows 11’s Mail and Calendar apps, which eliminate a lot of visual clutter and provide a simplified, streamlined experience. Microsoft doesn’t seem to change anything here, simply providing the familiar Windows 11 user interface with rounded corners.

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Currently, Microsoft doesn’t do much with Mail except updating the user interface

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Same goes for Calendar

Windows 11 is currently in final beta and will begin rolling out to compatible computers in October. Microsoft is planning to focus on the next version of Windows 11 after version 21H2 (Version 21H2) update October 2021) is out, and the company recently warned users to consider leaving the developer beta channel if they’re just regular users, because of upcoming updates to the channel. This will contain a lot of errors.

Reference: PCWorld

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