This is when Windows 10’s brand new look could land

Using a laptop
(Image credit: Pheelings media / Shutterstock)

The next major Windows 10 update, Windows 10 21H2, is expected to bring big changes to the way the operating system works (an earlier update, 21H1, looks set to be a more modest release), and some references in early code have hinted at when we may get the new-look Windows 10.

According to Windows Latest, Windows 10 21H2 (codenamed ‘Sun Valley’) will hit its RTM (release to manufacturing) build in June. RTM builds are essentially final versions that can then be sent out to laptop and PC builders to pre-install, as well as be made available to people already running Windows 10 devices.

However, as Windows Latest reports, even if the RTM build is finalized by June 2021, Microsoft could still hold it back to October or November, which is usually when the company releases its second major Windows 10 update of the year.

Worth the wait?

Early rumors suggest that Microsoft will be overhauling the look of Windows 10 and redesigning some of its major apps and features, including the Start Menu, Taskbar, File Explorer and more.

This could lead to the biggest visual change Windows 10 has had since its launch five years ago. So, you might be disappointed to hear you have to wait so long. However, by finalizing the RTM build in June, then holding it back for a few months, hopefully Microsoft will have time to properly test out the update before launching it. This should mean it gets released without the issues previous updates have shipped with.

Also, if you’d like to try the new update out sooner, you could sign up for the Windows Insider Program, which gives you early access to upcoming Windows 10 features and updates to help test them out.

This is a good way of getting new Windows 10 updates early, but do bear in mind that these early versions can have bugs (part of the reason why you’d be testing them), so only sign up if you’re sure you know what you’re getting into. If you want to give it a try, head over to Microsoft’s Windows Insider Program website to get started.

Matt Hanson
Managing Editor, Core Tech

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.