Microsoft touts migration to Windows 11 as painless, though wallets may disagree
Millions have perfectly serviceable PCs running Windows 10 at home
Microsoft's desperation to persuade customers that migrating to Windows 11 is a painless process has taken a new turn, thanks to a relentlessly perky video: "Make Your Move to Windows 11 Easier."
Uptake of Windows 11 is not going well, despite less than two years remaining before Windows 10 drops out of support – although an extension will be available for a fee. December figures from StatCounter showed that Windows 11 accounted for just 16.97 percent share of Windows PCs.
Microsoft's strategy around the operating system is becoming increasingly muddled. On the one hand, PC makers appear to be looking forward to the next major upgrade of the operating system – rumored to be Windows 12 – which will include AI code to make exotic and expensive hardware more appealing to users. On the other hand, Microsoft has inserted the likes of Copilot into Windows 10.
No one would suggest that users are flocking to Windows 11.
And now we have a short video from Microsoft demonstrating to users how easy it is to migrate from Windows 10 to Windows 11. Back up – using your Microsoft account, of course – and then simply fire up your new computer to find that everything is present and correct. Even saved passwords and browser settings will make the leap. On Edge, naturally.
- Windows 12 fan fiction shows how Microsoft might ladle AI into the OS
- Microsoft braces for automatic AI takeover with Copilot at Windows startup
- Microsoft pulls the plug on WordPad, the world's least favorite text editor
- Windows keyboards to get a Copilot key – but how quickly will users jump?
A cynic might point out that browser settings leaping from installation to installation has long been a thing – Chrome and Vivaldi spring to mind – and bringing a profile over from another Windows installation predates Windows 11.
However, as the grating voiceover makes clear, it's all ever so simple. Not made quite as clear in the video is that the move from Windows 10 to Windows 11 will likely require new hardware, thanks to its onerous hardware requirements, which means handing over money to PC vendors in return for precious little new functionality.
It's a shame because there's nothing particularly wrong with Windows 11, although your mileage may vary. It's no Windows 8 in terms of a jarring user experience, but there is also nothing particularly right enough for many users when it comes to justifying the migration.
According to Microsoft, the move to Windows 11 will be a painless one. The software giant has, however, stopped short of making it equally painless for your wallet. ®