Microsoft Should Preserve New Alt+Tab App Switch Shortcut in Windows 11

Microsoft Should Preserve New Alt+Tab App Switch Shortcut in Windows 11

It’s not very appealing, is it? That’s why Windows Insiders are currently testing a newly tweaked Task Switcher. It’s less space-consuming, ditches the full-screen, blurred effect, and opts for a snazzy edge-to-edge strip.

The Alt + Tab keyboard shortcut, often known as the Task Switcher, was introduced in Windows 2.0 in 1987. It allows Windows users to rapidly and effortlessly switch between apps by pressing the Alt and Tab keys at the same time. If you have Chrome and Illustrator open, for example, you may quickly switch from the Google browser to the Adobe software by pressing Alt + Tab. The Task Switcher function has been adjusted by Microsoft, and the improved version is currently being tested by the Windows Insider Dev Channel. The most noticeable change is that when using the Alt + Tab keyboard shortcut, it will no longer take up the entire screen (h/t DigitalTrends).

Microsoft Senior Program Manager Brandon LeBlanc shared a screenshot of the new Alt + Tab experience on Twitter, and Windows users praised the new look. “I prefer this over the full-screen experience. Way too much data on my screen,” Jeremy Sinclair said in a reply to the Twitter post. “It’s visual overload.” Others expressed that they want a more bare-bones aesthetic. “Could do with a little less bezel round the edge, but other than [that], it’s much nicer on the eye,” Rob Quickenden said. Twitter user Nathan concurred, adding “I think reducing the padding by like 60% could help balance what [kind of] looks like weird proportions.”

The feedback on the Task Switcher’s new look is largely positive, but Windows users are also wondering whether Microsoft will reinstate a former touch gesture for app swapping on tablets. “Would desperately love the return of swipe in from left to do this as well. On touch and tablets, I am constantly invoking the widgets mess when I want to switch programs,” Curt Kessler said, lamenting the missing Windows 11 feature. “Even on my Surface Book, I rest [my] hands on the sides to scroll with touch, but it’s a stretch to the button.”

“This.” said Anchel Labena. “I miss having an easy gesture to swap apps when using devices in tablet mode. Especially on something like the Surface Pro 8 when holding it in portrait mode to read websites. It’s awkward having to move the finger all the way down to swap back and forth through windows.” We’re not sure if Microsoft is onboard with Kessler and Labena’s suggestions, but with all the thumbs up I’m seeing for the Task Switcher’s new look, there’s a good chance that it will roll out for all Windows 11 users in the future.

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