Windows 10X is Microsoft’s modern take on what Windows as an OS can be in 2020 and beyond, featuring an entirely new user interface built with contemporary and fluid design at the forefront of its experience. Today, we’re taking a closer look at the new Action Center that Microsoft is building out for Windows 10X. It’s quite the departure from the experience on Windows 10 and is an improvement in pretty much every way.
Welcoming a new design
We kick things off with an overview of its design. Visually, the Action Center on Windows 10X looks very different from the Action Center on Windows 10. It’s split up into different “panels” with your quick actions (now known as quick settings) at the very bottom, and your notifications housed above it in a separate panel. Functionally, these serve the same purpose as they do on Windows 10, but the quick settings panel has a couple of new tricks up its sleeve.
The first new ability is that certain quick settings are now configurable directly from within the Action Center. Actions like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and ease of access are configurable without being taken to another applet or the Windows Settings app first. On Windows 10, the quick actions operate as an off/on toggle only, with no way to configure them directly from within the Action Center itself.
Also new to the Action Center on Windows 10X is a new music control panel that appears whenever an app is playing audio. It replaces the dated music control UI on Windows 10 with something that fits the rest of Windows 10X’s aesthetic. As of right now, there’s no way to scrub audio that’s playing through this panel, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that shows up in a later build before the public launch.
The Action Center also acts as your system tray overflow, with details like battery percentage appearing in the bottom left on a device with a battery inside. You’ve also got power options, a settings shortcut, and your user profile picture located at the bottom right, as those functions no longer reside with the Start menu on Windows 10X. Clicking on your user picture will give you options to lock and sign out of your PC.
That’s our closer look at the new Action Center on Windows 10X, shaping up as a sizeable improvement over its predecessor. I really appreciate the added functionality with the ability to configure certain quick actions from directly within the Action Center itself. What are your thoughts on the new Action Center? Let us know in the comments.