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Microsoft is redesigning Windows 11’s Photos app

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Alex Castro / The Verge

Microsoft may have redesigned its Photos app last year to better match the Windows 11 aesthetic, but now it’s testing a new version with a slightly new look and a few other improvements.

Perhaps the most notable change is a new gallery view, which offers a different way to browse your photos. In a blog postMicrosoft’s Dave Grochocki says the updated view aims to simplify browsing, searching, managing, and consuming the photos you have in your collection. The new app also brings improvements to the “Reminders” feature, although Grochocki’s blog post doesn’t specify exactly what’s different.

A Windows 11 window shows Microsoft's redesigned Photos app.  Behind it is another window with a large picture.
Image: Microsoft
The new gallery view in Microsoft’s redesigned Photos app for Windows 11. Get a closer look on Microsoft’s blog post.

The new app has one major drawback: you can’t use the old app’s video editor. If you want to trim videos instead, Grochocki recommends using Clipchamp, the video editing app it started bundling into Windows 11 in March after purchasing the app last year. That said, if you prefer the way the legacy app works — including the video editor — the company still offers it on the Microsoft Store as “Microsoft Photos Legacy.”

The redesigned Photos app will be available to Windows Insiders on the Dev Channel starting Wednesday. It will roll out to everyone in October, according to Microsoft’s Main Devices and Windows Panos Panay. Perhaps it will come at the same time as some of the new Surface devices unveiled at Microsoft’s just-announced October 12 event?

While you wait for the new Photos app, you might want to check out Microsoft’s major update to Windows 11 released Tuesday, which added things like improvements to Snap layouts and folders to the Start menu. Tom Warren has discussed the release in detail here.

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