Windows 11 Build 22616 is now rolling out to developers and beta channel users with one new feature and a bunch of improvements. This preview update includes a new Controller Bar for Windows 11, but we don’t know if the experimental feature will be included in version 22H2.
Like the rest of the updates, today’s preview release is called “Windows 11 Insider Preview 22616 (NI_RELEASE)” and comes with a long list of improvements. While it supports a new Game Bar experience, there are no major changes in this release as version 22H2 will reach RTM status in a few weeks.
As of Build 22616, you can try an early preview of an experimental feature called ‘Controller Bar’. This new addition is apparently part of the existing Game Bar and provides friendly access to the controller when playing games. You can get started with Controller Bar by pressing the Xbox button on your controller.
It also opens automatically when your device is connected to a controller and running the latest preview builds. Thanks to the new Controller Bar, your favorite and installed game launchers can be launched with just one button.
Here is a list of features offered through Controller Bar in Windows 11 Build 22616:
- The Xbox button opens the Xbox Game Bar and all the game widgets you’re used to.
- The button takes you directly to the game bar and widgets when you play a game
Currently, Controller Bar’s recent games section contains up to three game titles.
Follow these steps to use Controller Bar in build 22616:
- Download the Xbox Insider Hub from the Store.
- Open the Xbox Insider hub.
- Sign in to your Microsoft account.
- Go to the “Previews” section and sign up for the Windows Gaming preview.
- Update Xbox Game Bar to version 5.722.5022.0 or later from Store.
- Restart your PC.
Windows 11 Build 22616 improvements and fixes
Like the previous updates, today’s release also does not come with a built-in watermark in the lower right corner of the desktop. While the watermark is no longer present, Microsoft says it doesn’t mean the next feature update is complete.
However, according to sources familiar with the tech giant’s plans, Windows 11 22H2 will reach RTM status in late May or early June.
In terms of fixes, Build 22616 has addressed a critical bug where the “Show hidden icons” flyout doesn’t work. In addition to this fix, Microsoft has also enabled support for the ability to rearrange icons in the system tray due to feedback from testers.
Microsoft still plans to bring these changes back in a future release, but they won’t be included in version 22H2. As we noted earlier, some changes shown in the development or beta channels may not always be reflected.
As of build 22616, it is no longer possible to set up Windows 11 Pro without connecting to the Internet and a Microsoft account.
Here is a list of various fixes and improvements:
- Microsoft fixed an issue that affected explorer performance resulting in a bug check.
- Microsoft has fixed an issue that caused app crashes.
- Microsoft has fixed an issue where the widget board opens and then closes immediately.
- Microsoft has fixed an issue where users cannot swipe the functionality to call reliably.
- Microsoft has fixed an issue that causes display issues in Windows Sandbox where texts appear as black boxes in certain cases.
How do I install Windows 11 Build 22616
Follow these steps to install Windows 11 Build 22616:
- Sign up for Windows Insiders Program†
- Open the Settings page†
- Switch to the V or beta channeland make sure you are already using Windows 11
- Click on “Check for updates” and select “Download and install†
- Click on “Restart now†