Windows 11 in July: Light or dark, 3D emojis, Android apps via Amazon’s App Store, and more

Jack Wilkinson

Windows 11 logo

Whilst Windows 11 is still in its early days, July has been a bumper month for news on Microsoft’s latest operating system. From confusion, to new features and changes, and more apps in the Microsoft Store, there’s been a lot going on in the Windows 11 world over the past month.

Let’s take a look back at some of the main headlines throughout July.

Hype for Windows 11 causes some users to fall victim to malicious Windows 11 installers

Following the announcement of Windows 11, there’s been high demand for people wanting to try out Microsoft’s new operating system, despite it really only being available for people willing to test it, as part of the Insider program. This has opened up an opportunity for people with malicious intent to exploit people’s desire to have Windows 11, by circulating fake Windows 11 installers that have malicious code embedded in them, and are being used to download adware, malware, and other malicious software on users’ PCs, according to Kaspersky.

Windows insider program sign

Confusion over light or dark mode by default cleared up

There was some confusion over whether Windows 11 would ship with its dark mode enabled by default, instead of light mode. This confusion arose after a Microsoft employee reportedly stated that all commercial SKUs of Windows 11 would ship with dark mode enabled by default. Microsoft later clarified that this was not the case, saying that, as with Windows 10, light mode will be the default theme, however, PC manufacturers will have the option to ship their devices with dark mode enabled by default, if they wish to do so.

Windows 11 PC Devices

Microsoft Edge quietly appears on the Windows 11 Microsoft Store

Microsoft’s web browser, Microsoft Edge, made an appearance on the new Microsoft Store in Windows 11. Oddly, it has been published by “Microsoft Corporation II”, which is different to other apps published by the company. Nonetheless, it delivers the exact same experience as if you were to download Microsoft Edge yourself.

Amazon’s App Store “actively working” to support Google’s new App bundles, will work on Windows 11

When Windows 11 was announced, it was said that it would support Android apps natively, by making use of Amazon’s App Store, a third-party Android app store. But Google since announced that it would be changing how Android apps work, moving from the traditional .apk file to a new App bundle system. This change threw a spanner in the works for Microsoft’s plans for Android apps on Windows 11. But since then, Amazon has confirmed that it will be adding support for Google’s App bundles to its app store, and that it will work on Windows 11. Phew.

Amazon App Store

3D emojis are heading to Windows 11

Emojis are to get some attention in Windows 11 (and Microsoft’s other products), as the company announced its 3D emojis, which provide new depth to the traditional look of an emoji, creating a more fun and energetic visual. They are designed to follow Microsoft’s Fluent design language.

Acrobat Reader DC first Adobe Win32 app to appear in the new Microsoft Store

The first Adobe Win32 app arrived in the Microsoft Store on Windows 11 this month, Acrobat Reader DC. This is a sign of Adobe getting in on Microsoft’s new vision for its app store, designed to unleash an extra life, after its somewhat mixed reaction and take-up in Windows 10. Interestingly enough, the file size of Acrobat Reader DC from the Microsoft Store is lower, at 182.3MB, than the 203.9MB it requires when downloading from the Adobe website itself.

Adobe Reader DC in the Microsoft Store in Windows 11

First ARM64 version of Office is now available for Windows 11 on ARM testers

Microsoft announced the first version of an ARM64 version of Office for Windows 11 on ARM, available to testers. The new Office version designed for ARM devices provides significant performance improvements, as it is designed specifically for Windows on ARM with Windows 11, rather than the Windows 10 on ARM version, which used emulation.

Office ARM Windows 11

The end of not knowing how long an update will take before commencing the update?

Ever had that daunting notification that an update is available, but you just don’t know how long it will take to download and install, and are hesitant to install it if you have a meeting in a hour or so? Microsoft is looking to find a solution to that problem, as it is now testing ETAs for updates in Windows 11, designed to provide an indicator of how long an update should take, before you give the go-ahead for the update to begin, allowing you to make a more informed decision.

Microsoft is testing giving etas for os updates on windows 11 - onmsft. Com - july 2, 2021

New Black Screen of Death has been spotted on Windows 11

Are you used to seeing the Blue Screen of Death in Windows 10 (hopefully not!)? Well, Windows 11 may be looking to switch things up a bit with a new Black Screen of Death that has been spotted. Funnily enough, it will still have the same acronym of BSOD.

Want to read more about Windows 11? Keep up to date on our Windows 11 page which covers all of the most recent announcements and changes.