Microsoft has finally updated Sticky Notes in Windows 11 - and I'm excited about my favourite feature getting a lot smarter

happy woman using a Windows 10 laptop
(Image credit: Antonio Guillem / Shutterstock)

Microsoft could finally be updating the Sticky Notes app for Windows 11 (and Windows 10), after years of seeming neglect.

Sticky Notes is a pre-installed app from Microsoft that allows users to put virtual sticky notes on the desktop to help remember tasks or make to-do lists across their devices linked to their Microsoft account. While it’s an app that can be easily overlooked (even by Microsoft), for those of us who use it - such as myself - it can be an incredibly useful tool for staying organized and productive.

As Windows Central reports, the Sticky Notes social media account has just put out an intriguing update, hinting at some big updates coming to the app in the near future. With the last official post from the account dating back to 2020, this sudden burst of activity suggests that whatever the changes are in store - they’re going to be big. 

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Microsoft has been pumping out a steady stream of updates for Windows 11 and Windows 10, and rumors of a big 24H2 update slated for later this year, suggest huge changes are coming to Microsoft’s latest operating system. Even ancient pre-installed apps like Microsoft Paint and Notepad have received some positive updates in the last two years, so it’s refreshing to see the Sticky Notes app finally get some love and attention. 

The recent post from the Sticky Notes account doesn't give out too much information, teasing only that we should expect one of the “biggest announcements yet” for the feature. The account also responded to some initial speculation from excited users clarifying that the news is not a web app - for now. Instead, Windows Central is speculating that it could have something to do with Artificial Intelligence (AI), and I agree- here’s why.

Working smarter, not harder 

Sticky Notes seems like quite a basic feature at the moment, which means it's ripe for getting new AI features - something Microsoft has been incredibly keen on lately. Its close partnership with OpenAI (the company behind the popular ChatGPT AI bot), and continuing mission to integrate its own AI bot, Copilot, into almost every facet of Windows 11, means Microsoft already has the tools and knowledge to give its older apps some AI brains.

This is exactly what happened with the iconic Notepad app, which recently got ChatGPT-powered AI features, turning the once basic word processing app into a rather cool and useful tool that can help you with your writing - and all for free, due to it coming pre-installed with Windows since the 1980s.

There are a lot of positives that can come out of combining the simplest tool on your desktop and the ‘smarts’ of ChatGPT or Microsoft Copilot coming together, especially as the Sticky Note app works across your devices. 

However, things could also go sideways and Microsoft might end up bloating and overcomplicating an app users enjoy for its simplicity and reliability. Sticky Notes is one of those apps on Windows that just works; you know what you’re going to find when you unbox a new PC and you always know exactly what your virtual sticky notes will look like. A big change like the social media account suggests could turn a lot of loyal users into disgruntled ones if Microsoft ends up making the Sticky Notes feature far too complicated. Plus, not every user will be thrilled to have artificial intelligence bleed into such a basic app (and the security and ethical issues that surround AI). 

I love Sticky Notes and while I’m on the fence about how these ‘big changes’ will affect one of my favourite Windows features, I do ultimately think it will be a good thing. We could see exciting updates that could allow people to create collaborative Sticky Notes on their desktop, have the AI draft shopping lists out of desired recipes, and comb through emails and calendar apps to create a daily to-do list or schedule. 

While I do think the Sticky Note app doesn’t need the upgrade, there is the concern that it could be left behind if it’s not brought up to speed. AI-powered features, if done well, will not only retain its existing fans like me but also encourage new users to discover the app - and maybe even fall in love with it.

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Muskaan Saxena
Computing Staff Writer

Muskaan is TechRadar’s UK-based Computing writer. She has always been a passionate writer and has had her creative work published in several literary journals and magazines. Her debut into the writing world was a poem published in The Times of Zambia, on the subject of sunflowers and the insignificance of human existence in comparison.

Growing up in Zambia, Muskaan was fascinated with technology, especially computers, and she's joined TechRadar to write about the latest GPUs, laptops and recently anything AI related. If you've got questions, moral concerns or just an interest in anything ChatGPT or general AI, you're in the right place.

Muskaan also somehow managed to install a game on her work MacBook's Touch Bar, without the IT department finding out (yet).