Microsoft says goodbye to Windows 8-era brightness and volume indicators in the latest Windows 11 Insider Build

Bottom line: Microsoft continues to redesign Windows components, aesthetically aligning them with the design language of its latest OS, as well as other hidden fixes and improvements. In Insider Preview Build 22533 for Windows 11, these design changes are reflected in new hardware indicators for brightness, volume, airplane mode, and camera. The preview also contains minor updates to the taskbar, WinX menus, and Microsoft Your Phone app.

The rounded corner treatment goes well with Windows 11 hardware gauges, replacing the Windows 8-era vertical black bar to control things like volume and brightness we’ve been accustomed to for nearly a decade.

Included in the latest version of Microsoft Insider previewThe redesigned indicator removes the numeric value for added minimalism and is now displayed horizontally right above the taskbar. The updated appearance of these controls matches the OS’s dark / light modes and now closely matches their appearance in the quick settings panel.

The pre-build also allows users to uninstall the default Clock app and allows them to search for and / or pin Windows 11 Voice Accessibility to the taskbar or Start menu for easy voice interaction with the OS.

A more subtle change concerns the WinX menu (Win + X), where the Apps and Features label has been renamed to Installed Apps. In addition, Microsoft has updated its Calls in Progress window for its Your Phone app with new icons, fonts, and user interface, and has included over a dozen fixes in this preview build.

Bug fixes in this build relate to the taskbar, overall system stability, windowing, typing, and the Photos & Settings app. These components are also expected to have several issues that Microsoft recognizes. Insiders may experience a crash when using the search function or when switching input methods. In addition, the signal strength of available Wi-Fi networks may not be accurate, and the widgets function may not work properly when aligning the taskbar or when using multiple displays.

There is currently no timeline for when the aforementioned design changes and dev channel fixes will make it to the public release, but they could be part of the Windows 11 feature update slated for the second half of this year.

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