Windows 11 Logo

Slowly but surely, Microsoft has been going through all the system applications in Windows and overhauling them for Windows 11. The company started testing a Notepad update last month, and now upgrades to Calendar and Media Player are in the works.

Microsoft introduced a new Media Player application in Windows 11 last year, which replaced the old ‘Groove’ music player. It mostly serves as a music library, similar to Apple’s iTunes and Music applications, but it can also play video files (and music without importing). Starting with Media Player 11.2206.30.0, which is currently being tested with Windows Insiders in the Windows 11 Dev Channel, Media Player is now the default application for opening video files on your PC instead of the ‘Movies & TV’ app.

The Movies & TV app was first included in Windows 10, primarily to play movies and shows purchased from the Microsoft Store. It also replaced the classic Windows Media Player as the default application for opening video and audio files, though it still doesn’t have many playback options, and Windows Media Player continued to be included in Windows 10. Microsoft made the older Windows Media Player an optional download in Windows 11.

image of ripping a CD with Media Player

Speaking of the classic Windows Media Player, the new Media Player is also receiving one of its best features: the ability to rip CD discs. You can choose between AAC, WMA, FLAC, and ALAC format when importing music from a CD, and multiple bitrate options are available. It’s funny to think of CD ripping as a new feature in 2022, but CDs are still around, and people with Windows 11 now won’t have to reinstall the ancient Windows Media Player (or download a third-party tool) to copy the contents.

It looks like Microsoft is positioning the new Media Player as the main application for multimedia on Windows, which is certainly better than the mishmash of three apps (old Media Player, Groove, and Movies & TV) that we had on Windows 10. The Movies & TV application isn’t going away, though — in fact, Microsoft is adding native Arm64 support for the app in the Windows 11 Dev Channel.

Source: Windows Blog

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Corbin Davenport is the News Editor at How-To Geek, an independent software developer, and a podcaster. He previously worked at Android Police, PC Gamer, and XDA Developers.
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