Microsoft may be preparing to call its next major OS update “Windows 11 2022 Update”. Mentions of this name have appeared in near-final versions of the next big Windows 11 update, currently called 22H2. Twitter user XenoPanther noticed the name Windows 11 2022 Update in the Get Started app that appears when setting up a new PC.
The name could just be a convention, or it could mean that Microsoft is finally simplifying its often confusing Windows update names. The company had previously considered naming its updates after animals or people, but switched to a more grounded monthly naming instead of point releases, as Apple does with iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, and many other software updates. The move to annual naming for Windows 11 updates will make sense if Microsoft plans fewer big feature releases.
In a recent report, it was reported that Microsoft dropped plans to release an annual “23H2” update for Windows 11 in 2023, preferring instead to release new features throughout the year. Microsoft has recently changed its Windows Insider program, adding more experiments and prototype features that are tested ahead of time. These changes could result in Microsoft returning to a three-year Windows release cycle, with the new major version being released in 2024.
In any case, Microsoft’s next major Windows 11 update will be released on Sept. 20, a week after the usual Patch Tuesday fixes. Windows 11 22H2 – or possibly the Windows 11 2022 Update – will include several new improvements, such as app folders in the Start menu, drag-and-drop on the taskbar, and new touch gestures and animations.