Microsoft continues overhauling stock apps in Windows 11. After launching a redesigned Clock, Photos, and Snipping Tool, Microsoft is bringing a brand-new Media Player for Windows Insiders. It is now available for testing in the Dev channel.
Media Player for Windows 11 will replace the old and long overdue for a major update Groove Music app. Microsoft also wants the new app to replace the classic Windows Media Player, although the latter will remain available in the Windows Tools folder for quite a while.
Microsoft understands that many people like legacy Windows apps, and for that reason, the company decided to keep the old Paint and Windows Media Player around.
Media Player for Windows 11 also marks the return of a universal app for playing and managing music and videos. The current stable versions of Windows 10 and 11 have separate apps for music (Groove Music) and videos (Movies and TV).
Besides unifying two media apps into one, the new Media Player brings a beautiful modern UI. The music playback view features album art and pulls additional artist pictures for a richer experience.
The app also supports CompactView that lets you keep a small player window on top of other apps.
Microsoft says it has optimized the app for accessibility with improved keyboard shortcuts and access key support for keyboard users and people with other assistive technologies.
It is worth mentioning that the new Media Player app for Windows 11 is a public preview, which means you may encounter some bugs and glitches.
Microsoft is aware of an issue that prevents playback from network locations, plus bugs may impact editing album metadata, sorting library content with accented characters.
Finally, some UI elements will not "respect" your app theme preference. In other words, there are several things to iron out before shipping the app to the public. Still, it is exciting to see a big update for such a legendary app in Windows.
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