When Microsoft released Windows 11 in late 2021, it revealed plans to release one feature update per year for the operating system and increase the support lifecycle of each version.
Previously, the company released two feature updates per year for Windows 10, even though the last three updates for Windows 10 were minor feature updates only.
Both Windows 11 and Windows 10 will receive a single feature update per year in 2022 and onward. Microsoft confirmed that the 2022 feature update for Windows 11 would be released in the second half of the year, but did not narrow it down further.
Windows Central suggests that the first Windows 11 feature update could be released earlier than many users and administrators would expect. According to the blog, Windows 11 version 22H2 will be completed in May 2022 and a final build will be released in Summer 2022.
I’m told the current engineering schedule has mainline development on version 22H2 scheduled for completion in May 2022, with a final build expected sometime in the summer.
Summer 2022 in the Northern Hemisphere starts on June 21 and ends on September 23 in the year. A release closer to the end of the period, in September in particular, seems feasible, considering that the release date would be just 11 months after the official release of the Windows 11 operating system.
Windows Central does not mention its source for the information, and the news should be filed under rumor for the time being.
The next feature update has the codename Sun Valley 2. It will introduce new functionality to the operating system, notably support for Android applications by integrating the Windows Subsystem for Android in the operating system. Other improvements include updated applications and overall polishing of the system, which some users felt rushed by Microsoft.
Windows 11 is still being rolled out to all compatible devices at the time of writing. The next feature update version will be offered to devices that Telemetry considers to offer the best upgrading experience. Rollouts happen over periods of weeks or months, and Microsoft expects to offer the free upgrade to Windows 11 to all eligible devices by mid-2022. The period of the 2022 feature update release rollout will likely be shorter.
The option to set the default browser again may also be introduced with the feature update.
Windows 11 has a few confirmed issues currently, but Microsoft has been criticized mainly for removing functionality that existed in previous versions of Windows, including Windows 10. Most top requested Windows 11 features ask Microsoft to bring back functionality that it removed.
To name a few issues: changing default programs is less straightforward, annoying AMD performance issues, a taskbar with reduced functionality, and a redesigned File Explorer with usability issues.
Now You: what do you expect from the first feature update for Windows 11?