The dust has barely settled on the release of Windows 10’s May 2020 update, but we’re already looking ahead to what the next major version will bring.
Instead of a whole new version of Windows, Microsoft now releases feature updates twice a year, in addition to monthly security patches.
While there are a number of known issues associated with the May update, these are expected to be ironed out long before its successor arrives.
However, with Windows 10’s recent reputation for being susceptible to bugs, stability will once again be a priority, as users demand an operating system they can rely on.
Windows 10 November update release date
We can only assume that Microsoft will stick with biannual feature updates, meaning the next major version will arrive in November 2020.
Security updates are delivered to Windows 10 devices on the second Tuesday of each month, on a day informally known as ‘Patch Tuesday’.
Should Microsoft follow this schedule, we could expect the update to arrive on 10 November, although that’s pure speculation at this stage.
Windows 10 November update device support
The vast majority of Windows 10 devices that were eligible for the May update will still be compatible with the next version. However, support will likely vary between companies, so it’s worth checking with manufacturer of your device.
As with the May update, Microsoft is likely to throttle availability in order to manage ever-increasing demand. Depending on the age of your device, it could mean you have to wait a number of weeks after the official release date for it to be ‘ready’ to install.
While we wouldn’t recommend downloading the May update at the moment, checking if it’s available for your device is a good indicator that the November update will also arrive.
Windows 10 November update new features
Image: Windows Latest
Although months away from any expected release, there are already a few rumours about what we can expect from Windows 10’s next feature update.
Windows Latest is reporting that the ’20H2′ update will be more of a cumulative update, without any of the headlining new features we saw in the May update. The website’s strong track record when it comes to Windows news means we have no reason to doubt them, particularly as the late 2019 update was similarly minor.
With under the hood improvements prioritised, one such area that looks to be getting some attention is storage settings. Again according to Windows Latest, the next update will add user cleanup recommendations, to help you easily clear unused files.
This is expected to work in a similar way to what we’ve seen on smartphones, recommending large, rarely used or backed up files to be deleted from your hard drive.
In an official blog post, Microsoft also said it would prevent the deletion of items in the downloads folder if it’s to a cloud storage provider. Windows 10’s File Explorer can sync directly to the likes of OneDrive and Google Drive, but it means accidental deletions usually apply across all your devices.
Of course, the priority for Microsoft is to ensure the November 2020 update is as stable as it possibly can be. The May update has been plagued with issues since launch, leading the likes of Tom’s Guide to label it ‘a disaster’.
Windows 10 upcoming features
Although some new features have already been confirmed, we’re not expecting to see these appear on Windows 10 before the end of 2020.
Microsoft teased a redesigned Start Menu back in April 2020, but it’s not expected to make its way to Windows 10 until 2021.
Created by the @Windows design team, this animated clip illustrates a sliver of the #UX evolution and modernization of the Windows experience. Let us know what you think in the comments below! pic.twitter.com/s4SVXncLEo
— Microsoft Design (@MicrosoftDesign)
April 6, 2020
As the short clip above illustrates, the new Start Menu will be released alongside updated icons for a number of Microsoft’s stock apps. Teams, Outlook and the Microsoft Office apps all look set for a refresh.
In a subsequent Facebook post to celebrate Pride month, Microsoft showed off the new Start Menu in more detail.
The new Start Menu looks like it will be much sleeker than the current version. There’s particular emphasis on the redesigned live tiles, with icons showing up over a consistent background if not displaying live information.
It’s unclear why Microsoft debuted this new design more than a year before it’s expected to arrive, although an early build of the 2021 (21H1) update has already been released to insiders.
Once again, Windows Latest has revealed lots more features that we’re expecting to see on Windows 10 in 2021. These include modernised volume controls, a smaller search bar and redesigned action center. The latter looks set to offer significant improvements to users’ ability to manage notifications and quickly access controls.
We’ll update this article once more is known about the next major Windows 10 update.