Microsoft Planning Major Windows 10 UI Refresh for 2021

Image: Microsoft

As part of its recent Windows 10 October 2020 update, Microsoft added a few visual tweaks to the Start menu to improve the look of the OS, but while those changes are a definite improvement, the company may be prepping a complete overhaul that reinvents Windows 10’s aesthetic completely.

According to Windows Central’s sources, Microsoft will be rolling out a major update in 2021 to replace many of Windows 10’s top-level interfaces, such as the Start menu, Action Center, and File Explorer. The changes will presumably include a sleeker, modernized skin, as well as refined menus and new animations.

“This UI project is codenamed ‘Sun Valley’ internally and is expected to ship as part of the Windows 10 ‘Cobalt’ release scheduled for the holiday 2021 season,” Windows Central reported.

“Internal documentation describes the project as ‘reinvigorating’ and modernizing the Windows desktop experience to keep up with customer expectation in a world driven by other modern and lightweight platforms.”

While Windows 10 isn’t the worst-looking operating system, a visual uplift is certainly welcome in light of its countless legacy apps, whose designs and icons have become clearly outdated.

Microsoft has also had a habit of ignoring or introducing inconsistencies (e.g., using Windows 7-style menus with new features) with every update, which is something that “Sun Valley” will hopefully address.

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