Microsoft may finally simplify its Windows 11 update names

Microsoft is preparing to name its next major OS update as “Windows 11 2022 Update”. References to this naming have appeared in the near-final versions of the next major Windows 11 release, currently named 22H2. Twitter user XenoPanther noticed a nomenclature of Windows 11 2022 Update in the Get Started app, which appears when you setup a new PC.

The naming may simply be a placeholder, or it may indicate that Microsoft is finally simplifying its often confusing update names for Windows. We’ve seen a variety of names over the years, including the Creators Update naming for a major Windows 10 update, more mundane naming like the Windows 10 May 2021 Update, and more recently the Windows 10 21H2 moniker.

Microsoft had considered naming its updates after animals or people, but the point released instead transitioned to a more secure monthly naming like Apple does with iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, and many other software updates. A move to just annual naming for Windows 11 Updates makes sense if Microsoft is planning fewer big drops of features.

A recent report suggested that Microsoft scrapped plans for a “23H2” annual update for Windows 11 in 2023, instead preferring to roll out new features throughout the year. Microsoft recently revamped its Windows Insider program, adding more experimentation and prototyping features that have already been tested. These changes could move Microsoft back to a three-year release cycle for Windows, with a new major version (Windows 12?) in 2024.

I’d still prefer Microsoft to move to Windows 11.1 or 11.2 with their major updates. It’s easy to determine what the latest update is, and it’s easy to understand whether your PC or laptop is up to date or you’re just waiting on Microsoft or your OEM to approve the latest bits.

Either way, Microsoft’s next big Windows 11 update is due out on September 20, a week after the company’s regular Patch Tuesday fix. Windows 11 22H2 – or it could be the Windows 11 2022 update – will include a number of new improvements such as an app folder in the Start menu, drag and drop on the taskbar, and new touch gestures and animations.

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