Windows 11 Build 22543 is now rolling out to testers in the Dev Channel and it comes with changes that could ship in the fall of 2022 as part of Sun Valley 2. With today’s preview update, Microsoft is adding support for new natural voices that will be used in the Windows Narrator feature.
Like the rest of the updates, today’s release is simply called “Windows 11 Insider Preview 22543 (rs_prerelease)” and it is not intended for daily use cases. It is available to Dev Channel users in the Insiders program only and users can download the update from Windows Settings > Windows Update.
There are two major changes in today’s preview update – the introduction of new natural voices for Windows Narrator and UI improvements for the window snapping experience. The company says new voices will allow users to comfortably browse the web, read, and write mail, and more.
These voices support on-device text to speech and they use modern APIs with support for offline content. At the moment, these new Natural Narrator voices are available in English-U.S. To get started, you will need to launch Narrator and open its settings page where you can simply select and add “Jenny” or “Aria” voice
If you’re unsure about the voice pack choice, you can always click on the “preview” button to hear a preview of the voice and then click on “Install” to finish the process. After applying the changes, you can also try new narrator commands: Narrator + Alt + the Minus key and Plus key to switch between installed voices.
What’s new in Windows 11 Build 22543
Microsoft is now updating the experience with a new design for resizing app windows in snap layouts.
The update also overlaps the relevant app icons on top of the acrylic background and you will notice a new animation when you resize the snapped window layout.
Likewise, Microsoft is refreshing the media controls design which appears on the Windows Lock Screen. As you’re probably aware, if you’re playing music in the background in a supported app like Media Player or Microsoft Edge, a media control flyout appears in the bottom corner of the screen.
As you can see in the above screenshot, Windows 11’s new media controls for the lock screen support light/dark themes and it also matches the lock screen’s visual style.
Other improvements in Windows 11 Build 22543:
- You’ll notice a new confirmation flyout that will appear when you mute or unmute your call using the WIN + ALT + K keyboard shortcut.
- Microsoft is updating the input picker with an acrylic background.
- A new progress ring animation is being introduced and aligns with the updated boot screen animation. The new progress ring will appear when you install cumulative or preview updates.
- Disks & Volume and Storage Space are getting a new look to match the design of Settings in Windows 11. You can now directly view stats for drive, volume, and space on these pages as buttons.
In addition to the new narrator and UI improvements, Microsoft has also fixed various issues, including a bug where the Task Manager would crash when switching to the Performance tab. Likewise, hardware indicators will now show the level. Another bug has been fixed where UI would become unresponsive after enabling HDR.
How to install Windows 11 Build 22543
To install Windows 11 Build 22543, follow these steps:
- Open Windows Settings > Windows Insider Program tab, and join the test program.
- Switch to the Dev Channel from Beta or Release Preview.
- If you don’t see the update, simply hit “Check for updates“.
- Select “Download & Install” next to the preview update.
- Click on “Restart now” to apply changes.
Known issues in Build 22543 for Windows 11
Microsoft is aware of these known issues in Build 22543:
- A bug in the OS could make the taskbar flicker when switching input methods.
- You may not be able to open the Windows Search panel if you click on the search icon on the Taskbar. You can fix the problem by restarting the “Windows Explorer” process.
- The IME candidate window doesn’t work sometimes.
- The temperature may not appear when the taskbar is left-aligned.
- Voice is not switched in Narrator after downloading Microsoft Aria (Natural).