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Calculator, Mail, other built-in apps get a Windows 11 facelift in latest beta

Calculator, Mail, other built-in apps get a Windows 11 facelift in latest beta

 August 13, 2021 at 12:50 am   |     Author:   |     Technology  

A Windows calculate is ringed by brilliant, purplish lens flare.
Enlarge / Get excited! The new Calculator app is here!!

Andrew Cunningham

Microsoft is giving the Windows 11 treatment to a handful of core apps in the next Insider Preview build of the upcoming operating system. Mail, Calendar, the Calculator, and the Snipping Tool are all being revamped, and if you’re running the latest Insider Preview, you should be able to grab these updates from within the Windows Store app starting today.

The changes in Mail, Calendar, and Calculator appear to be largely cosmetic, ejecting the squared-off corners of Windows 8 and 10 for a softer, more rounded look that fits in with the rest of the operating system. The one “new” app is a revamp of the Snipping Tool that unifies the features of the old Snipping Tool and the Windows 10 Snip & Sketch app (this update brings the useful side effect of finally getting rid of the annoying message telling you that the Snipping Tool is going away every time you open it up).

The new Snipping Tool still gives you buttons for changing what kind of screenshot you’re trying to take and whether you want it to happen on a delay. Its annotating tools for screenshots have been given a more modern facelift, too (the old ones were stuck in the Windows 7 era). Snip & Sketch users can continue to access that handy UI by using the Windows + Shift + S keyboard shortcut.

The new apps will roll out to Windows Insiders on the less-stable Dev Channel first. Microsoft began releasing Windows 11 builds to the more-stable Beta Channel in late July, and you’ll need to keep waiting if you want to use these new features on a less bleeding-edge iteration of Windows. You can always change your channel from the Windows Update section of the Settings app.

As with all Insider Preview builds so far, Microsoft is not enforcing Windows 11’s new security requirements just yet, so most computers that run Windows 10 will still be able to run new Windows 11 builds and these updated apps.

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