Microsoft Weekly: New builds for Windows 11, Microsoft 365 improvements, and Edge upgrades


Microsoft Weekly graphic with the Windows 11 logo on the left and Outlook and Teams logos on the right

Welcome to the first edition of 2023 of Microsoft Weekly. As most of our readers will be aware, Microsoft Weekly is a digest where we recap every major piece of news from the tech giant for the past seven days. This time, we have some updates related to Windows 11 builds, as well as a bunch of improvements for Teams and Outlook. Let’s dive into the latest Microsoft Weekly edition covering January 1 – January 6!

New year, new builds

Windows 11 orange logo

After a holiday hiatus over the past few weeks, Microsoft resumed Insider Preview builds a few days ago. Windows 11 Dev Channel Insiders were treated to build 25272, which contains a long list of bug fixes and general improvements. But more importantly, it also brings back a controversial Start Menu. characteristic, which is recommended for websites in the lower half of the UI. That said, it’s still unclear if it will make a comeback in the future. Additionally, we learned that Microsoft is also working on a “Gallery” interface, but it’s not clear how it will differ from the Photos directory.

Meanwhile, beta channel insiders received build 22623.1095 (KB5022364). It includes bug fixes for the task manager, start menu and taskbar along with more rounded corners for the search box in the start menu.

That’s not to say that the generally available version of Windows has nothing to talk about. Microsoft last week also fixed a SQL Server issue affecting apps on various versions of Windows.

And for all you performance stats geeks out there, some new data shows that Windows 11 may not be faster than Windows 10, and it may not have much of an advantage over Ubuntu either. In related news, there have also been sporadic reports of the latest Patch Tuesday update for the Windows 11 version causing freezing issues on AMD Ryzen PCs. AMD also claims that it will boost Windows 11 performance at least on its latest Ryzen 7000X3D chips.

Finally, if you’re still using Windows 8.1 for some reason, consider upgrading as soon as possible as support for the OS ends in a few days.

Improvements to Microsoft 365

The Microsoft 365 logo

There have been a bunch of updates related to Microsoft 365 over the past few days. For starters, the Microsoft 365 Current Channel has built build 15928.20198 (version 2212). The update brings new features to Access and Word and also fixes some bugs in the latter software and Excel. Speaking of Excel, Microsoft has finally introduced the Automate tab for Excel desktop users on both Mac and Windows, find out what it does here.

Meanwhile, Outlook Mobile users are set to get a bunch of new features next month. These include better email forwarding and better warning messages and cleanup options when your email is about to run out of storage. On the other hand, iOS users will get more customization options.

Similarly, the team’s users were also treated to some good news. The meeting toolbar has been redesigned to make navigation much easier, but the feature is not yet generally available. Additionally, February will bring “Busy Options,” which basically means users can customize how incoming calls are routed when you’re busy on an existing call or meeting. .

Finally, it’s worth highlighting that Skype and OneDrive went down briefly this week but Microsoft was able to resolve the outage within hours.

Microsoft Edge and other app updates

Microsoft Edge Browser

Now with 2023, it looks like Microsoft has its work cut out for it in the Edge department for good. This is because the latest statistics from Statcounter revealed that the browser managed to capture only 2% desktop market share in the whole of 2022. That doesn’t mean it performed worse than other browsers, but it reinforces the fact that more than a billion Windows devices running worldwide aren’t enough for Microsoft to win the race. .

In related news, Microsoft Edge also recently received a new dev build. On Android, one notable feature is improved ad blocking but you should experience fewer crashes and enjoy bug fixes on other platforms as well.

Likewise, PowerToys 0.66.0 brings with it a large list of bug fixes and improvements – but unfortunately no new toys. And third-party utility Virtual Desktop Helper now supports Windows 11 Insider builds as well. Get more details about this update here.


Steam logo on Windows 11 stock wallpaper background

While Edge may not be doing as well in the desktop market as Microsoft might have hoped, Windows 11 is apparently making waves in the gaming community. Valve’s latest survey data shows that the OS is used by about 29% of gamers, which is a significant figure given the operating system’s young age.

In other notable news, Microsoft has agreed to form a labor union in the U.S. with ZeniMax Studio staff, a first for Microsoft’s U.S. division, which includes nearly 300 quality assurance team members. , more than any other American game studio to date. .

On the Xbox side, we’ve got an alpha color preview with a “recent parties” feature to quickly dive into a game with the same group of people you’ve been playing with before. Meanwhile, CES 2023 saw a slick ASUS ROG Raikiri Pro Xbox controller with a 1.3-inch OLED display above the Xbox button that can be used to display text or animated wallpaper.

It was also accompanied by a new Xbox Series X bundle. Forza Horizon 5 And lots of in-game extras. Additionally, there were games with Gold subscribers. treated To Iris Fallbut if console gaming isn’t really to your palette, check out this weekend’s PC game deals curated by our News Editor Plasthi Aryasinghe instead.

Dev Channel

Rocket Launching Station

Under the spotlight

Remember this message

In this section, we have guides focused on Outlook first. The first is from news reporter Hemant Saxena who explains how to recall or edit an email after sending it through the Outlook 365 app.

Outlook logo monochrome outline on dark gray and blue background

Next, we have a guide from news editor Justin Luna on how to schedule emails from Outlook Web App.

Night light

Our third and final guide for this week is from forum member Adam Bottgen’s Tech Tip Tuesday article, which suggests that you can reduce blue light from your computer display to reduce eye strain. How to reduce and help you sleep better. Read this important guide here.

Logging off.

Bing people

Our most interesting news this week is undoubtedly a report claiming that Microsoft is looking to integrate the popular ChatGPT large language model into its Bing search engine. It wouldn’t be too surprising that Microsoft invested $1 billion in OpenAI, the company behind the machine learning model. Of course, both companies have refused to comment on the subject but it will be really interesting to see if Bing On steroids Powered by ChatGPT is enough to kill Google in the long run.

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