One of the biggest new features in Windows 11 is the support for widgets, something that Microsoft is now working on expanding with every single update.
However, it looks like the widgets were supposed to debut in Windows a lot earlier, as new concepts shared on YouTube by former Microsoftie Steven Sinofsky (via XDA) show this feature isn’t exactly new.
In fact, the video, which includes a look at early versions of Windows 8 and some of the features Microsoft planned for this controversial operating system, reveals that the software giant wanted the widgets to be part of the desktop experience back in 2012.
The feature didn’t make the cut, but instead, Microsoft went all-in on the live tiles and the new Start screen. The video also provides us with a look at an early version of the Start screen, with one of the screenshots indicating that Microsoft actually wanted to integrate the Microsoft Store right into this new experience.
In Windows 11, Microsoft is betting big on widgets as a new way to reach the content that matters to you, including news and information.
“Even when we’re at our most focused and creative we still need breaks – a moment to check in with the outside world or give ourselves a mental reset. Today, we often pick up our phones to check the news, weather or notifications,” Microsoft said when it announced the first version of Windows 11.
“Now, you can open a similarly curated view directly from your desktop. When you open your personalized feed it slides across your screen like a sheet of glass so it doesn’t disrupt what you’re doing. For creators and publishers, Widgets also opens new real estate within Windows to deliver personalized content. Our aspiration is to create a vibrant pipeline for global brands and local creators alike, in a way that both consumers and creators can benefit.”
You can watch Sinofsky’s entire video embedded below.