Microsoft is finally fixing the Windows 11 taskbar’s biggest flaw

Happy man with laptop on his lap
(Image credit: Prostock-studio / Shutterstock)
Audio player loading…

The Windows 11 taskbar is perhaps the most controversial element of Microsoft’s new operating system, with many of the changes the company made being disliked by users – but the good news is that Microsoft appears to be listening to feedback by changing one of the biggest complaints people had about it.

Unlike in previous versions of Windows, in Windows 11 you can’t drag and drop apps onto the taskbar to quick add shortcuts to your favourite software. You also can’t drag and drop files onto app icons in the taskbar to open up the files in the app of your choice.

The taskbar was also locked to the bottom of the screen, so you couldn’t move it to the side or top of the screen, which some people preferred. These limitations are incredibly annoying, as it prevents Windows 11 users from performing quick and convenient tasks that previous versions of Windows allowed. Worse, there was no obvious reason why drag and drop functionality was removed.

Because of this, there has been a vocal backlash about the changes, and according to Windows Report (opens in new tab), Microsoft will add this much-requested feature, but it likely won’t arrive until 2022.

We’ll probably see the feature arrive in the Dev Channel version of the Insider Preview first, which is an early build of Windows 11 that allows people, especially app developers, to test out new features before they are rolled out to the entire Windows 11 user base.

As Research Snipers points out (opens in new tab), there’s reference to drag and drop functionality coming “after the Christmas holidays in Redmond,” which coincides with when we could expect the Windows 11 22H1 update.


Analysis: complaining works

While early 2022 may seem like a long way off to wait for a feature that should have launched with Windows 11 back in October, at least Microsoft appears to be listening to its users and adding drag and drop functionality.

As with Windows 10, Windows 11 features a ‘Feedback Hub’ where you can tell Microsoft what you think of the operating system and its features. This is useful if there’s something you don’t like, and as we can see, that feedback can be used to help shape Windows 11 in the future.

So, while we remain baffled at Microsoft’s decision to kill drag and drop features from the Windows 11 taskbar, we have to give the company credit for listening to its users and righting those wrongs.

In the meantime, Microsoft has been adding more features to the Windows 11 taskbar, such as a new icon for quickly muting your microphone, which is a great addition that improves the security of people’s devices. As we noted in our Windows 11 review, this is an operating system that will continue to evolve and improve, so check out our guide on how to download Windows 11 if you want to give it a try.


Matt is TechRadar's Managing Editor for Core Tech, looking after computing and mobile technology. Having written for a number of publications such as PC Plus, PC Format, T3 and Linux Format, there's no aspect of technology that Matt isn't passionate about, especially computing and PC gaming. Ever since he got an Amiga A500+ for Christmas in 1991, he's loved using (and playing on) computers, and will talk endlessly about how The Secret of Monkey Island is the best game ever made.