Microsoft will roll out notifications for the Weather, Finance, Sports, and Breaking Alert widgets in Windows 11 starting this week. Windows 11 users will see these as live animations for their gadgets on the taskbar. (Thanks to The Verge for the advance notice.)
Microsoft revealed its plans to enable the feature in a short note in its Windows 11 release status document, posted at 11pm on August 16. For Windows 11 users who have the extension enabled, “Your taskbar will show the most weather documents explained.
While users can turn off widgets in Windows 11, they can’t seem to turn off notifications directly. I’ve asked Microsoft if there’s a way to manually turn off extension notifications, but so far no response. Like precipice Note, constantly updating widgets like stock tickers can be distracting on the taskbar.
Update (August 23): A spokesperson told me that “Microsoft has gone ahead and updated its release notes to include: ‘At this point, it’s not possible to turn off Widget notifications. Microsoft is constantly listening, learning, and welcoming. Customer feedback helps shape Windows.”
Microsoft is rolling out notifications through an update to the Windows Web Experience Pack. The package is one of the few different ways Microsoft officials have said they will use to deliver updated features for Windows 11. Earlier this year, company officials said they were up plans to do occasional Windows 11 feature updates whenever they decide to do so, although there is a commitment in 2021 to deliver a single Feature Update release for Windows 11 every year.
According to a report earlier this year, Microsoft will likely switch to a new service model with Windows 11 after the release of Windows 11 22H2 this fall. If window centerAs far as Google’s information is correct, Microsoft may be planning to release new major Windows releases every three years, starting in 2024, with up to four groups of smaller feature updates, called “Moments”, every year between major releases.
The start of today’s utility announcements shows that Microsoft is moving ahead with its plan to deliver feature updates on a less predictable and faster schedule than some users — especially businesses. — may wish. But Microsoft officials seem to think that more feature updates are better than few planned updates, and seem to be moving Windows in that direction.