Microsoft Drops New Windows 11 Preview Build with Xbox Controller Bar
Windows 11 Insiders signed up with the Dev and Beta Channels of the Windows Insider Program are today getting a new Preview Build. Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22616 brings a handful of fixes, but a notable new feature being tested is for Windows Insiders who like to game on their PCs with an Xbox Controller.
Microsoft is introducing a new controller bar feature that provides easy, controller-friendly access to recently played games and game launchers.
"The controller bar opens when you pair or connect a controller to your Windows 11 PC running the latest Insider Preview build in the Dev and Beta Channels," the Windows development team writes. "Your most recently played games and installed game launchers are just a button press away. Invoke the controller bar when you’re not already in a game, by pressing the Xbox button on your controller."
To be able to test this early preview, you will need to download the Xbox Insider Hub from the MS Store. Sign in with your Microsoft Account, navigate to “Previews,” and then join the Windows Gaming preview. Next, check for updates in the Microsoft Store to ensure you have the latest version of Xbox Game Bar (Version 5.722.5022.0 or higher). Reboot your PC and pair or plug in your controller to start testing!
Other improvements coming with Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22616
- [REMINDER] The build watermark at the lower right-hand corner of the desktop is no longer present in this build. This doesn’t mean we’re done, and the watermark will return to Insiders in a future build.
- As a result of feedback from Windows Insiders, we have decided to disable the changes to the system tray introduced in Build 22581 for now. The system tray and specifically the “Show hidden icons” flyout will now function the same way it did with the original release of Windows 11, including the ability to rearrange icons in the flyout. We hope to bring these changes back in the future after further refinement of the experience by addressing some of the feedback we have received. As we’ve mentioned previously, features we try out in the Dev or Beta Channels may not always ship.
- Previously, we shared new requirements for internet and MSA on the Windows 11 Pro edition. Today, Windows Insiders on Windows 11 Pro edition will now require MSA and internet connectivity during the initial device setup (OOBE) only when setting up for personal use. If you choose to setup device for Work or School, there is no change, and it will work the same way as before.
Insider Preview Build 22616: Fixes
- We fixed an issue where performance and reliability of explorer.exe could degrade over time, eventually resulting in a bugcheck, in the recent Insider Preview builds.
- We fixed the issue causing the “Show hidden icons” flyout in the system tray to disappear completely for some Insiders, even though it shows as “on” under Settings > Personalization > Taskbar and “Other system tray icons”.
- Fixed an issue which was leading to some apps crashing when pressing the half-width/full-width key while using the Japanese IME.
- Fixed an issue where if you tried to open the widgets board using a gesture from the side of the screen, you would see the widgets board open and then immediately close.
- Fixed an issue where users were unable to use the swipe functionality to reliably invoke Widgets.
- Fixed an issue that could cause Quick Settings to crash when projecting to certain wireless devices.
- Addressed an issue where using the 3-finger on-screen touch gesture for minimizing could cause animations to stop working across the system.
- Fixed an issue impacting DWM reliability in recent flights.
- Fixed an issue which was causing some apps like Settings to open blank if they were re-opened an upgrade or reboot.
- We fixed an issue that was causing the process list to fluctuate between Apps & Background groups when clicking on Efficiency mode from the command bar
- Fixed an underlying issue which could cause some text in Windows Sandbox to appear as black boxes in certain cases.
- Fixed an issue leading to Windows Update notifications showing they were sent from “Windows.SystemToast.WindowsUpdate.MoNotification” instead of “Windows Update”.
Windows 11 Build 22616: Known issues
- Certain apps in full screen (e.g., video players) prevent live captions from being visible.
- Certain apps positioned near the top of the screen and closed before live captions is run will re-launch behind the live captions window positioned at top. Use the system menu (ALT + Spacebar) while the app has focus to move the app’s window further down.
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