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Here's what the Windows 10 21H2 'Sun Valley' update Taskbar menus could actually look like

Rounded Start Menu
Rounded Start Menu (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • A glimpse of a new Windows 10 Taskbar menu recently appeared online.
  • The image showing off the menu is the result of toggling on hidden settings within Windows 10.
  • According to our sources, the menus shown off are similar to what is planned to actually ship.

Windows 10 is set to get a major overhaul with its upcoming 21H2 'Sun Valley' update. The teases and glimpses that we've seen so far who a modern operating system with a unified look. The Start Menu, apps list, notifications and action center, and several other elements are easier on the eyes and follow a design language. Now, a tweet from Twitter user "@TheXamlGuy" is making the rounds with an image of a new Taskbar menu.

There are some important pieces of context when looking at this image, however. The rounded Taskbar Jump List shown off only appears after you enable some options through the shell experience. Because of this, it isn't exactly what the Jump List currently planned looks like. That being said, based on information we've received from sources, the Jump List in the image is similar to what is planned.

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The overall direction of the Windows 10 Sun Valley update is modernization. Microsoft wants to reinvigorate, reinvest in, and rejuvenate Windows 10, and a unified modern look is part of its efforts. The rounded corners and overall design of the Jump List from the Taskbar line up well with the notifications and action center, Start menu, and other elements of the update.

Our executive editor Zac Bowden said this of the upcoming changes:

Regarding the Start menu, I know that Microsoft is working to round off "sharp" elements of its UI, such as the corners around live tiles and the Start menu itself. Context menus and Jump Lists in the Start menu and Taskbar are also expected to get the rounded corner treatment, along with most modern in-box apps.

Bowden showed off the Jump List from the Taskbar back in February, though it's worth noting that designs for the Sun Valley update were not finalized at this point.

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People have clamored for a visual overhaul of Windows 10 for years. Inconsistent menus, outdated design, and other odd elements appear to be on the way out for Microsoft's operating system.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

9 Comments
  • Great to see they are going the rounded-square route. I hope they also bring some transparency to the OS. I don't mind the current state of the UI, I just wish it was more polished and cohesive.
  • I prefer those sharp edges. Gives more screen real estate. But the rounded corners add some character and the radius looks balanced now. I hope they stay this way and not get as ugly as chrome OS or Android. That's a total waste of space.
  • I really hope it will be possible to disable rounded corner, that's just ugly
  • I'm fi e with the rounded edges. Time to get rid of live tiles next
  • You do not like the Live tiles? Do not use them; personally I say bring the Interactively live tiles…
  • Yeah, I have more functionality on to the OS, not less. Not to mention, its odd complaining about this when it can be unpinned, and user can disable the "Live" part of the Live Tile and just keep it as an icon. I wish for Interactive Live Tile, making it as a widget, then allow to be pinned on the desktop. This way we get more functionality and ability to make a desktop dashboard for our apps supporting Live Tile and new Interactive Live Tile. Its odd if we are moving to direction of static icons, all while iPadOS and iOS, who used to be pretty bare in features and customization. Now recently makes widgets become an essential features for their homescreen. On iOS, it even looks like a Live Tile but with rounded corners.
  • I really hope theres a hack to restore the user icons to current style and not the weirdly coloured ones. #vom
  • Let's go back to XP era with rounded corners and this horrid Android-style UI.
    They copied from the most awful UI. Twenty years ago rounded corners were an upgrade over the old Win95 UI, in 2021 just a step back. But yeah.. let's make kids happy with that!
    I hope to see not later than 2025 sharp corners back!
  • your probably one of the dumbest people to ever exist, it's a scientific fact that rounded corners are easier for our eyes, they let our eyes focus to what is inside the square, sharp corners are the opposite. not to mention rounded corners look more modern and beautiful. you are probably 80, not everyone is as old as you are, most of us want our OS to look modern.