Windows 11 requires Precision touchpads: Here's how that affects your laptop

Windows 11 Widget Surface Pro
Windows 11 Widget Surface Pro (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Precision touchpads will be required for new PCs shipping with Windows 11.
  • Many laptops already feature Precision touchpads, as they provide a smooth experience.
  • It's unclear at this point if the requirement applies to current devices or only to new PCs shipping with Windows 11.

The minimum requirements of Windows 11 continue to make headlines. While Microsoft's hardline approach to TPM 2.0 may have drawn the most attention, there are some other specifications worth noting. Starting with Windows 11, PCs with touchpads will have to have Precision touchpads, as explained in a Microsoft document.

Here's how our Cale Hunt explains Precision touchpads:

Microsoft Precision touchpads use a standardized set of drivers that offer a consistent, smooth, and accurate pointing experience. Although Precision drivers first appeared in the Surface Pro 2 and have since been used in every Surface device, many laptop manufacturers beyond Microsoft also take advantage of the drivers to deliver the best possible pointing.

Precision touchpads are now standard in all of the best Windows laptops, though there are a few holdouts. Precision drivers are known to deliver an optimal touchpad experience, so most manufacturers have decided to use them.

There are, however, some budget laptops that do not use them. A handful of other laptops also use other types of touchpads. This won't be the case with any new laptops, as all manufacturers will be required to have Precision touchpads on any devices shipping with Windows 11.

Of course, the requirement only applies if a touchpad is implemented. Desktops won't have to have touchpads, Precision or otherwise.

It's not clear at this time if Precision drivers will be required for upgrading purposes, even though we know that all new PCs shipping with Windows 11 will need to have them. We've reached out to Microsoft to confirm if laptops without Precision drivers will be able to make the jump to Windows 11.

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