The questions of whether Windows 11 is worth the expense is an almost impossible question to answer. It all depends what you hope to achieve with an upgrade to the latest programme. For example, if you use Microsoft Teams then the change from Windows 10 to Windows 11 will be welcome, as Teams is integrated into the taskbar – meaning that the program can be started with just one click.
Windows 11 is worth it for most people. Although at first sight it looks familiar to Windows 10, there are a number of new features. Windows 11 allows you to download android apps, has face and voice recognition and has enhanced security features to protect your PC.
For reasons above, upgrading your operating system to the latest version of Windows will be a good idea. Whether you want to do it immediately is another question.
Read on to find out more…
What is the importance of upgrading Windows?
PCs running operating systems lower than Windows 10 do not support some enhanced security features and this leaves users vulnerable to security risks and malware attacks.
Operating system updates are necessary for a safe and secure computer and after a while, Microsoft will cease to support older versions.
As new hardware and software is often designed to work with the latest versions of Windows, an upgrade to Windows 11 ensures that any new hardware you purchase or software you install will work perfectly.
What is the difference between Windows 10 and Windows 11?
If you have ever used a Mac, then you will recognise a lot about the user interfaces in Windows 11, as there is a more Mac-like interface to the OS.
The design is cleaner with rounded corners and pastel shades.
The Start Menu moves to the centre of the screen, along with the Taskbar, but you can always move those back to the left – where they are in Windows 10 – if you prefer.
Among the many new features is that Windows 11 lets you set up virtual desktops, allowing you to toggle between multiple desktops at once.
So you might have one desktop for your work computing, another for personal stuff and another for the kids´ school work etc. This was theoretically possible in Windows 10, but it was harder to set up and use.
Something many Windows users have been asking for is to have Android apps available through the Microsoft Store, and this is now possible in Windows 11.
Windows 11 now has some features found in Microsoft Xbox console, such as Auto HDR and Direct Storage, to improve gaming performance on your Windows PC. Gamers will be able to explore the Xbox app too.
The Start menu has a new layout which, again, is similar to that found on Mac computers. Some people like this, some prefer the old look.
If you are in the latter camp you can easily switch to your preferred option.
Does Windows 11 do anything better?
Because of changes to the new OS and the way it handles data, it is possible to have maximum performance of the program you are working on while having other programs open.
In other words, Windows 11 allows you to have several program windows open at the same time with no loss of speed.
Windows 11 enables your PC to wake up to 25% faster from sleep.
“Wake on Voice” is another new feature of Windows 11. It allows you to wake your computer up by talking to it, and it also integrates HelloFace for logging in by standing in front of your computer.
Every Windows update contains a few “tweaks” that are not apparent to the user, but Windows 11 increases the speed of your Solid State Drive (SSD) so things just happen a little faster.
Another big improvement is the way Context Menus work.
What are “Context Menus?”
For a long time, in later versions of Windows, the “right click” has brought up a window with options (Save, Save As etc.).
This has options relevant to what you are doing – because it recognises the “context” (in a web page, for example, you have the option to “Save Page As”) – it is called a “Context Menu”.
In Windows 11 these menus have been “tweaked” so that the most common commands – cut, copy, paste, delete, and rename – are neatly arranged as icons on top and close to one another.
It may be a small improvement but it can save a lot of time scrolling through a menu to find what you want.
Are there problems with Windows 11?
The latest Windows, like all new programs or new versions of operating systems, has a few bugs but unless you live in Chile the issues caused by the change to Daylight Savings Time there won’t affect you!
However, if you use Microsoft Edge as your default browser, having the tabs sometimes fail to respond when you tick a box at a website might be a lot more annoying.
This issue was resolved by Microsoft at the end of August 2022, but it is an example of the sort of bug that only shows up once millions of people have used the new version.
It is probably fair to say that Microsoft Windows apps should work perfectly, but there is a small chance that third party Android apps might sometimes not be entirely happy working under Windows 11. However, this is usually a rare occurrence.
One thing that was important to a lot of offices was the fact that Windows 11 wouldn’t allow the installation of some printers. As you can imagine, this was soon reported and fixed quickly.
It’s possible you may have some compatibility issues with older hardware or software. The older the hardware or software the more likely this will be but it is not, in general, a problem.
However, if you buy new equipment in future you may find that you have unsupported hardware – ie. it won’t work properly – if you have an older version of Windows. This in itself is a good reason to upgrade to Windows 11.
It’s a very minor annoyance, but in some installations of Windows 11 the snipping tool is missing. This is easily fixed but it shows what can happen in the earliest days of a new Windows operating system.
So the answer to the question, “are there problems with Windows 11?” is that there have been, there probably will be in future, but most so far these have been rare and quickly fixed.
To find out more take a look at our blog ‘Are there bugs in Windows 11?‘.
Is there any reason not to upgrade to Windows 11?
To run Windows 11, your computer must meet certain minimum system requirements.
The following is quite technical but if in doubt Lee Harvey Computing will be happy to give their expert advice:
- CPU: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with 2 or more cores on a compatible 64 bit processor or System on a Chip (SoC)
- RAM: 4GB
- Storage: 64GB or larger
- System firmware: UEFI, Secure Boot capable
- TPM: Trusted Platform Module (TPM) version 2.0
- Graphics card: Compatible with DirectX 12 or later with WDDM 2.0 driver
- Display: High definition (720p) display that is greater than 9” diagonally, 8 bits per color channel
- Internet: Windows 11 Home edition requires internet connectivity and a Microsoft account to complete device setup on first use and for some people this is a concern. They worry that Microsoft will have access to their data etc. and it is true that, as a default, some data on your activity is sent to Microsoft. However, it is fairly easy to change the Privacy Settings to stop this happening. Lee Harvey can advise here.
Windows 11 – FAQs
Do I need to buy a new computer to run Windows 11?
You do not necessarily need to buy a new computer to run Windows 11. If you have a fairly new computer with the above specifications (ask Lee Harvey if you are unsure), there is no need to purchase new equipment.
However, any computer, whether it is a laptop or desktop, that you purchase now will almost certainly come with Windows 11 installed. If you are considering a new computer ensure that this is the case.
Is it easy to upgrade to Windows 11?
Generally the answer is “yes.” However, if you are not confident with computers, you may want to leave this to an expert.
Lee Harvey will be happy to help and can set up your Privacy settings etc at the same time. He can also give you all the latest news on improvements, updates etc.
Does it cost anything to upgrade to Windows 11?
If you are upgrading from Windows 10 to Windows 11, then the upgrade is free. From other versions of Windows it is more complicated.
Windows 10 is 7 years old, so if you have an earlier version of Windows it probably means your computer is older than that. Technology moves on at a pace so the bad news is that your computer probably doesn’t meet the specifications set out above in “Is there any reason not to upgrade to Windows 11?”.
Is upgrading to Windows 11 is a good idea?
Upgrading your Windows software is always advisable. The question is “when?”. Early adopters are the ones that find the bugs and glitches in any new operating system and that initial period can be assumed to be over.
Windows 11 is proving to be stable and faster than Windows 10 so, yes, it’s a good idea to upgrade now if you can.
The history of Windows is chequered. A lot of people will tell you that Windows Me and Windows 2000 were the worst versions ever!
Since then each version has brought improvements in the number of features, increases in speed efficiency and regular security updates to protect against malware and viruses.
In a few years time, Microsoft will cease supporting Windows 10 with security updates etc,. It will still work but why would you want to take that risk?
The question was “Is windows 11 worth it?” and, as we’ve seen, there is almost certainly no financial cost and the small amount of effort involved in upgrading is certainly worth it.
Why not give Lee Harvey Computing a ring to discuss making the change to Windows 11 today?