5th March 2024

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Technology and Computer

4 Windows 11 features I want to see ported to Windows 10

Key Takeaways

  • Microsoft is bringing its new generative AI feature, Copilot, to Windows 10 through the Windows Insider Program.
  • Windows 10 users are still missing out on features like Snap Layouts, Windows Subsystem for Android, and a cleaner settings app, which are currently only available on Windows 11.
  • Microsoft should continue to focus on improving Windows 10, as it will still be supported until 2025 and is used in various systems beyond desktops.

Microsoft recently made some noise when it announced that it’d be bringing one of Windows 11’s newest features to Windows 10. To get the power of its new generative AI features into more hands, the company will soon start testing Copilot on Windows 10 through the Windows Insider Program. When you consider that Windows 11 is roughly in use on half a billion devices, and Windows 10 nearly double that, it’s a move that makes a lot of sense.

But Microsoft is still focused on updating Windows 11 with new features, as we’ve seen with the most recent Windows 11 23H2 update, and is still ignoring Windows 10 for the most part in regards to big updates. This announcement is just a small recommitment to Windows 10, but what features are those who can’t download and install Windows 11 missing? What should Microsoft port over to Windows 10?

1 Snap Layouts

For better multitasking

One of the top reasons I’ve grown to love Windows 11 is Snap Layouts, which is a huge help with multitasking. But if you take a step back, you’ll see that it is a feature clearly born from Windows 10’s Snap Assist, which can automatically suggest ways for you to tile windows. Windows 11’s Snap Layouts takes it to the next level with a preview of how you can snap open windows with the maximize button and ways to save those windows as a group, too. With that in mind, it can’t be that hard to port this over to Windows 10, can it? Windows 10 users can already get a similar feature thanks to PowerToys, so why not build it in natively?

2 Windows Subsystem for Android

Put the power of Android apps into more hands

Microsoft is making Copilot available to Windows 10 users to put generative AI tech into more hands, so why not something like Android apps? You can use Windows Subsystem for Android on Windows 11 to set up Android apps to use on your PC, and it would be a great fit for Windows 10 users. It would put Android apps onto the desktops of more people, benefiting not only Microsoft but developers and Google. Speaking of Google, Google is already very present on Windows 10 thanks to Google Play Games in beta, so why stop there? We know that the hardware can support it, since it can support Android games, so it’s possible.

3 A cleaner settings app

Make it easier to get where you want to go

Screenshot of the Home section in the Windows 11 Settings app

Before Microsoft released Windows 11, it spent a lot of time tweaking the Windows 10 settings app. Some settings weren’t always easy to find, and the app has indeed come a long way, with a centralized home page, a back menu, and an improved search box. After using Windows 11 for nearly three years, though, it always pains me to return to Windows 10 if I’m fixing something on my parents’ older PCs.

Windows 11’s settings page is simply more modern and understandable, and the new dynamic home page with the card-like interface of your most commonly used settings makes Windows 10 look inefficient and boring by comparison. Windows 11 also combines a lot of legacy settings from the Control Panel into the modern settings app so changing certain settings isn’t in two different places like it is on Windows 10. I wish Microsoft could refocus on making Windows 10’s settings app better, especially for those who aren’t comfortable switching to Windows 11 yet.

4 Updated system apps in Windows 10

Why can’t legacy Windows users enjoy the new feature, too?

Screenshot of a Windows 11 desktop with the Paint app running

In going back to using Windows 10 for a bit for this post, one thing I noticed is how outdated some of the system apps feel. Microsoft has rightfully been focused on updating Windows 11’s core apps like Paint, Photos, and the Clock with new features, like background removal in Paint and iCloud photos. However, I wish these features would come to Windows 10 users. Of course, newer core app features in a newer operating system give people a reason to update, but when you consider that Windows 10 will still be around until 2025, it’s unfair to see outdated system apps on an OS still used by so many people.

Windows 10 isn’t just going away

As much as Microsoft focuses on Windows 11 these days, Windows 10 won’t go away, at least not yet. Though the operating system will be supported through 2025, it’s still quite popular. You’ll find it not only on desktops but also in tons of other systems, such as assembly lines, point-of-sales systems, kiosks, and more. Not all these features I mentioned matter for all Windows 10 systems, but it’s still a fact that Microsoft should still focus on Windows 10 and not just Windows 11.