Is Microsoft restoring Windows 7 Gadgets feature in Windows 11?
Microsoft introduced support for gadgets, small apps that ran directly on the desktop, in Windows Vista. Gadgets were limited to a sidebar in Windows Vista and unlocked in Windows 7, so that users could place them everywhere on the desktop.
Microsoft did retire gadgets in Windows 8, stating that they were security risks. A report by Windows Central suggests that Microsoft is working on bringing the prime Windows 7 gadgets functionality back in some way.
Windows 11 features a Widgets panel that users may activate to display news, weather information, stock market news, sports scores and now also third-party widgets. All widgets are limited to a place in the widgets panel currently, but this could change soon.
According to Windows Central, Microsoft considers adding an option to Windows 11's Widgets feature to pin widgets to the desktop. Users would be able to pin their favorite widgets to the desktop, so that they are displayed all the time on the desktop. Widgets pinned this way may be placed everywhere on the desktop according to the report.
Microsoft hopes, according to Windows Central, that the new option to pin widgets improves the engagement with widgets.
Microsoft has not confirmed the feature nor has it been introduced in any of the Insider builds that are available currently. The change could improve the visibility of Widgets, considering that information is then displayed on the desktop, which removes the need to activate the Widgets panel.
Gadgets were popular on Windows 7 especially. Gadgets would display hardware information, music player controls, photos, and other bits on the desktop directly.
It would be ironic if Microsoft would launch the feature in the near future and remove the entire Widgets interface again in Windows 12 or another upcoming version of Windows 11.
Widgets is a controversial feature in Windows 11. Some users like it, especially the weather information on the taskbar, others have no use for it. The icon can be removed easily from the Windows 11 taskbar.
The change has not been confirmed yet by Microsoft and needs to be considered a rumor for now. It would make sense though to improve the functionality of Widgets further and fits right into other Widgets changes that Microsoft is testing or has introduced already.
Now You: do you use Widgets? What is your take on the desktop pinning feature?Advertisement