Windows 11 Photos app gets a redesigned editor with new update
Microsoft is rolling out a new update for the Windows 11 Photos app including a major redesign for the photo editor. We received the update for the Photos app on a Windows 11 PC today, running a production build (non-Insider), so it should be rolling out to everyone on Windows 11.
While Microsoft introduced a new Photos app for Windows 11 with some design tweaks and new features, the photo editing experience was largely unchanged from the Windows 10 version. Now, there’s a radically different interface being rolled out. When you click the edit button, you’ll see the changes right away. The cropping tool is no longer displayed on the side, and instead you can rotate the picture using controls below the image, including the ability to flip the image vertically or horizontally. Previously, you can only flip a photo horizontally.
The cropping controls have also been enhanced somewhat. Now, when choosing an aspect ratio to crop to, you can choose a landscape or portrait orientation right away. Before, you’d have to choose a general aspect ratio, then choose whether you want it to be landscape or portrait with a separate button. Additionally, when you adjust the cropping area, you can now see the exact resolution the image is being cropped to.
Another change is that if you try to edit a transparent image, you’ll see the typical checkered background to indicate that the background is transparent. This only happens when editing the image, and it will be simply transparent when you’re just viewing it.
The Windows 11 photo editor update also includes changes over in the Adjustments tab. All the controls are now displayed by default, so you don’t have to expand any menu options. However, the “clarity” slider seems to have been removed. You also no longer have features like red eye removal and spot fix, which is hopefully just an oversight and will be addressed in future updates. Meanwhile, the Filters tab has some new filters with new names that should make it a little clearer what each filter does.
One last change is that the ability to draw on images is now in its own tab called Mark-up in the general photo editor. Previously, it would be a completely separate mode, so if you wanted to make general edits and then doodle on an image, you’d have to do one thing, save the image, then go back to do the other thing. This should simplify the process.
As far as we can tell, those are the only changes in this update to the Photos app, but let us know if you’ve spotted anything else that’s different. If you haven’t received the update yet, check the Microsoft Store to see if there’s an update available. The app version you get should be 2021.21120..8011.0.
Microsoft also recently started rolling out a major update to the Notepad app to Insides in the Beta channel. This update debuted a month ago in the Dev channel, and it includes a new dark mode and other UI changes to align with the Windows 11 design language. A recent update to the new Media Player app also made it possible to install on non-Insider PCs if you download the MSIXBUNDLE installer file. You can use this site to do exactly that.