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Beginning to enable a set of new features for Windows Insiders in the Dev Channel on Build 26120.961


Hello Windows Insiders, we are beginning to enable the following new features, changes and improvements, and fixes to the Dev Channel for Insiders on Build 26120.961 who have turned ON the toggle (shown in the image below) to get the latest updates as they are available via Settings > Windows Update. We’re starting the enablement of these at a small percentage at first so not all Insiders in the Dev Channel with this toggle turned on will see all these features right away. And some features may show up while others might not just yet. We hope to further expand the enablement of these new features, changes and improvements, and fixes with the next new Dev Channel build. Insiders will need to reboot to see if they have received the enablement of these features.

Turn on the toggle to get the latest updates as they are available to get new features rolled out to you.
Turn on the toggle to get the latest updates as they are available to get new features rolled out to you.

New features gradually being rolled out to the Dev Channel with toggle on*

Narrator users can now use voice access to dictate text hands-free

Narrator users can start using voice access in Windows 11 to dictate text with voice and hear what is dictated. In addition, you can also use voice access to give Narrator commands. For example, “Turn on Narrator,” “speak faster,” “read selection,” “read next line,” etc.

To know the entire list of Narrator commands supported with voice access, click help icon (?) on the voice access bar, select “View all commands” and choose “Narrator commands.”

What will work:

  • Start and set up voice access which includes downloading a speech model.
  • Read a list of voice access commands and Narrator commands from voice access help menu.
  • Changing voice access microphone state.
  • Dictating text with voice and hearing back what was dictated.

Tips:

  • If you don’t use headphones for listening to the screen reader, the audio output from the screen reader may get picked up by voice access microphone, leading to unwanted behavior.

FEEDBACK: Send us feedback in Feedback Hub (WIN + F) under Accessibility > Narrator.

Auto Restart for Voice Access & New Voice Access Command for Windows Search

We are introducing auto restart for voice access in Windows 11. This feature ensures that voice access will automatically restart if it encounters any issues so that individuals with limited mobility can get back to using voice access as quickly as possible. Customers will no longer need to rely on alternative assistive technologies or assistance from others to reactivate voice access. Should voice access automatically restart due to a crash, we are making it easier to report those crashes once voice access restarts so the team can investigate and work on fixes.

We are introducing a new command for searching directly with Windows search. Users can now say the command Search “Entity”; Search Windows for “Entity”; or Search for “Entity” to search for their desired application or file in Windows (“Entity” is replaced with whatever application or file you want to search.)

FEEDBACK: Send us feedback in Feedback Hub (WIN + F) under Accessibility > Voice access.

Changes and Improvements gradually being rolled out to the Dev Channel with toggle on*

[Start menu]

  • This update starts the roll out of the new account manager on Start menu. When you sign in with a Microsoft account, the new design gives you a quick glanceable view of your account benefits and makes it easy to manage account settings.
New account manager experience on the Start menu showing account settings and an action needed that needs to be taken to secure your Microsoft account.
New account manager experience on the Start menu showing account settings and an action needed that needs to be taken to secure your Microsoft account.

[Windows Share]

  • We are beginning to roll out the ability to copy files from the Windows share window. Just click the new copy button.
New copy button for copying files in the Windows share window highlighted in a red box.
New copy button for copying files in the Windows share window highlighted in a red box.
  • Users will be able to now generate QR codes for URLs and cloud file links through the Windows share window to seamlessly share webpages and files across their devices. To try this out in Microsoft Edge, just click the share button in the Edge toolbar and choose “Windows share options”.
Option to generate a QR code to share a URL through the Windows share window.
Option to generate a QR code to share a URL through the Windows share window.
  • To prevent accidentally closing the Windows share window, clicking outside the Windows share window will no longer close it. To close the Windows share window, just press the close button at the top right corner.
  • If your Microsoft account uses a Gmail address, you can now send email to yourself from Windows share window and receive it in your Gmail account.
Example Gmail option to email yourself in the Windows share window highlighted in a red box.
Example Gmail option to email yourself in the Windows share window highlighted in a red box.

[Emoji]

  • We’re adding support for Emoji 15.1 which introduces a small number of brand-new emoji such as head shaking horizontally and vertically, phoenix, lime, brown mushroom and broken chain. Other changes for Emoji 15.1 include Unicode’s decision to revert family combinations to symbol-like shapes. Windows has chosen to stay with our existing style that uses people in family combinations. We are also supporting the new directionality updates for person/man/woman walking, kneeling, with cane, running, manual wheelchair and motorized wheelchair. You can now select right facing or the original left facing orientation for these emoji.
New Emoji 15.1 that includes head shaking horizontally and vertically, phoenix, lime, brown mushroom and broken chain.
New Emoji 15.1 that includes head shaking horizontally and vertically, phoenix, lime, brown mushroom and broken chain.
Example of new directionality updates for person/man/woman walking emoji with right facing or the original left facing orientation.
Example of new directionality updates for person/man/woman walking emoji with right facing or the original left facing orientation.
Example of new directionality updates for person/man/woman in manual wheelchair and motorized wheelchair emoji with right facing or the original left facing orientation.
Example of new directionality updates for person/man/woman in manual wheelchair and motorized wheelchair emoji with right facing or the original left facing orientation.

[Windows Backup]

  • If you have both Personalization and Other Windows settings toggled on under Settings > Accounts > Windows backup, many of your sound settings (including chosen sound scheme) will be backed up which can be restored via the Windows Backup app.

[Settings]

  • To ensure you don’t lose access to your Microsoft account, we’re beginning to roll out a new banner with a “Add now” button under Settings > Account for adding a recovery email address if you haven’t added one for your Microsoft account yet. This will only show if you are signed in with a Microsoft account.
  • We are beginning to roll out updated visuals for the “Rename your PC” and “Change date and time” dialogs to match the Windows 11 visuals.
Rename your PC dialog with refreshed design to match the Windows 11 visuals.
Rename your PC dialog with refreshed design to match the Windows 11 visuals.

Fixes gradually being rolled out to the Dev Channel with toggle on*

[Task Manager]

  • Updated the units (from MHz to MT/s) for DDR speed.
  • Fixed an issue where the Safely Remove Hardware option for ejecting USB devices wouldn’t work if Task Manager was open.
  • Did some work to ensure Task Manager releases process handles quickly when terminating processes.
  • Made some more improvements to help with Task Manager reliability.
  • We have improved the performance when changing the sort order.
  • Made multiple improvements to overall accessibility of Task Manager, including improving keyboard focus, tab navigation, text scaling, names of items read out by screen readers, and more.
  • We made it a little easier to resize Task Manager when trying to resize by grabbing the top of the window.

[Graphics]

  • Fixed an issue where some monitors would get stuck at a 60Hz refresh rate and couldn’t be set higher even though the monitor supported it, because dynamic refresh rate was stuck.

[Multiple desktops]

  • Fixed an issue where the option to set a different wallpaper on each desktop wasn’t working.

[Other]

  • Fixed an underlying issue which could lead to some apps not starting on startup even though they were enabled as startup apps in Setting.
  • Fixed an underlying issue which could lead to the pop up asking for permission to use location not appearing, which could lead to app issues without location access.
  • Fixed an issue causing some Insiders to see a bugcheck with error DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL in recent flights.

Reminders for Windows Insiders in the Dev Channel

  • Updates released to the Dev Channel are based off Windows 11, version 24H2.
  • Features and experiences included in these builds may never get released as we try out different concepts and get feedback. Features may change over time, be removed, or replaced and never get released beyond Windows Insiders. Some of these features and experiences could show up in future Windows releases when they’re ready.
  • Many features in the Dev Channel are rolled out using Control Feature Rollout technology, starting with a subset of Insiders and ramping up over time as we monitor feedback to see how they land before pushing them out to everyone in this channel.
  • Some features in active development we preview with Windows Insiders may not be fully localized and localization will happen over time as features are finalized. As you see issues with localization in your language, please report those issues to us via Feedback Hub.
  • Windows Insiders in the Dev Channel who want to be the first to get features gradually rolled out to you*, you can turn ON the toggle to get the latest updates as they are available via Settings > Windows Update. Over time, we will increase the rollouts of features to everyone with the toggle turned on. Should you keep this toggle off, new features will gradually be rolled out to your device over time once they are ready.
  • Because the Dev and Beta Channels represent parallel development paths from our engineers, there may be cases where features and experiences show up in the Beta Channel first.
  • Check out Flight Hub for a complete look at what build is in which Insider channel.
  • Copilot in Windows** is being rolled out gradually to Windows Insiders across our global markets. Customers in the European Economic Area will be able to download the Copilot in Windows experience as an app from the Microsoft Store.

Thanks,
Amanda & Brandon



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