Microsoft will release Windows 11 on October 5, it announced in a blog post today. The new operating system will be a free upgrade to eligible Windows 10 PCs and come on a series of new PCs that will be sold with it preinstalled.
October 5 is just the beginning of the rollout, however. On October 5, new devices will be the first to be given the chance to upgrade. It will then continue to current devices "based on intelligence models that consider hardware eligibility, reliability metrics, age of device and other factors that impact the upgrade experience," wrote Aaron Woodman, general manager of Windows marketing. That rollout should give all devices that can upgrade to Windows 11 the option to upgrade by mid-2022.
Those with PCs running Windows can will be able to check when it is eligible for an upgrade by going through Windows Update.
One feature from the original announcement won't make it to the Windows 11 launch: Android apps.
"We look forward to continuing our journey to bring Android apps to Windows 11 and the Microsoft Store through our collaboration with Amazon and Intel; this will start with a preview for Windows Insiders over the coming months," Woodman wrote.
Last week, Microsoft expanded its list of compatible hardware slightly, adding select 7th Gen Intel processors to its list of approved processors. Those with approved processors that otherwise meet the system requirements (1GHz, dual-core CPU; 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, DirectX 12 graphics; TPM 1.2) will be able to install Windows 11 with an ISO, though Microsoft may not provide access to updates.
Microsoft is reiterating that for those who have a PC that can't run Windows 11, support for Windows 10 will run through October 14, 2025. It's getting a new feature update, 21H2, later this year with WP3 standards for Wi-Fi security and GPU compute support in the Windows subsystem for Linux, among other features.
While a slew of new PCs are likely to release to coincide with Windows 11's release, Microsoft made sure in its announcement to point out that many existing Windows 10 devices on the market are all likely to get updates, including its own Surface laptops and options from other companies like Dell, Asus and Lenovo.