Windows 11 gets a window into gaming with this new widget

Microsoft is testing a new PC Game Pass widget in the latest Windows 11 preview to give its Xbox gaming subscription service a visual punch on the desktop.

The new Game Pass widget is being introduced Windows 11 Insider build 25174 preview for Dev Channeloffering a visual shortcut to Xbox games in the Windows 11 widget panel.

“This widget is a window into PC Game Pass’ extensive library – it’ll show the latest additions, upcoming games and more from the highlighted categories, and then take you to the Xbox app where you can install them, see reviews and go all in,” Microsoft said.

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PC Game Pass for Windows 10 and 11 is the Windows sibling of Xbox Game Pass for Xbox consoles, offering a catalog of downloadable games for $9.99/€9.99/£7.99 per month. Microsoft launched the PC subscription in 2019 before Google launched its gaming subscription service Stadia. The big multi-platform subscription, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, costs $14.99 a month and offers high-quality games to play on Xbox, the browser, iOS and Android devices, and from June, Samsung TVs.

Microsoft is also working on the ability to sign in to an Xbox account and switch to recently played games. It also works on personalized recommendations.

pcXbox Game Pass has proven popular. Microsoft has revealed that it has 25 million subscribers in January when it announced its $68.7 billion acquisition of Call of Duty maker Activision Blizzard.

Meanwhile, Microsoft is filling out the Game Pass catalog. In June, Microsoft announced a partnership with Riot Games to bring several League of Legends titles to Game Pass.

To try out the new Game Pass widget on Windows 11, users need to open the widgets panel from the taskbar or press Win + W:

  • Open the widget panel.
  • Click on + icon next to your profile.
  • Click on + icon besides Game Pass
  • Close the Widget settings window.
  • The Game Pass widget should now appear in your widgets dashboard.

This build also brings fixes to File Explorer, the taskbar, and settings.

Image: Microsoft

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