Windows 11’s new “Highlighted Search” adds clutter from Bing

Google has created “doodles” for many holidays or major events that appear on Google Search and Google mobile apps, and now Microsoft is adding something similar to Windows 11.

Microsoft added “Highlight Search” on Windows 10 in March, which are animations that appear in the search bar related to an ongoing event or holiday – a globe icon with hearts appeared on Earth Day, for example. It’s a fun idea, but it can be distracting if you have the full search bar visible all the time in the taskbar. At least it’s easy to hide.

Microsoft is pushing Windows 11 Build 22000.776 into the Release Preview Channel, which marks the start of a wider rollout for Search Highlights on Windows 11. Fortunately, the feature isn’t as distracting on Microsoft’s latest operating system – Windows 11 doesn’t have a search bar right on the taskbar, so you won’t see anything new until you click the search button.

Windows 11 Research Highlights Microsoft

Just like on Windows 10, if a search highlight is present, a panel appears on the right side of the search popup with information about the event or day. Most (if not all) are promoted content from Bing. Microsoft said in a blog post, “Search Highlights will showcase notable and interesting moments of what’s special every day, like holidays, birthdays, and other educational moments in time, both in the world and in your region.”

Microsoft says Search Highlights will start appearing more widely for Windows 11 over the next few weeks, with a full rollout coming “in the coming months.”

Source: Windows Blog


Amanda J. Marsh