Microsoft confirms when WordPad will be tossed on the scrapheap – later this year with Windows 11 24H2

It’s now official that when Windows 11’s big 24H2 update rolls around later this year, we’ll be saying farewell to WordPad.

This is no surprise, as we had already heard the death knell for the venerable default app, with Microsoft announcing WordPad was deprecated back in September 2023, and then it disappeared from preview builds of Windows 11 in January 2024. Back at the time, we were told future releases of Windows 11 would not include WordPad.

As Windows Latest spotted, we now have fresh info from Microsoft which represents concrete confirmation that the 24H2 update will be when WordPad is ditched from its desktop OS.

Microsoft tells us: “WordPad will be removed from all editions of Windows starting in Windows 11, version 24H2 and Windows Server 2025.”

Windows Latest checked current preview builds of Windows 11 24H2, searching for WordPad in the Start menu, and its related files in various folders, finding that it has all been stripped out.

Analysis: WordPad down, Notepad on the up

In the past, Microsoft has made it clear that you won’t be able to somehow reinstall WordPad (and that the app won’t be present in new installations of Windows 11). So, you’re not going to be able to avoid losing WordPad when the 24H2 update rolls out to Windows 11 users, which should be around September 2024 (or maybe a bit later). As ever it’ll be a phased rollout so you might not get 24H2 straight away, anyway.

There is one obvious way to keep WordPad, mind you, and that’s not to take the 24H2 update when it’s released. You can stick on 23H2 at least for the length of time it’s supported, which will be until November 2025. After that (or even just before), Microsoft will start force upgrading PCs away from 23H2 (as without support and security updates, users are at risk from unpatched exploits).

Of course, by not getting the 24H2 update you’ll be missing out on a whole bunch of new features – so WordPad better be worth a lot to you. Windows 11 24H2 promises to be a major update, not just bringing in new functionality, but also changing the underpinnings of the OS with a new platform – Germanium, which ushers in performance and security benefits under the hood.

Furthermore, Notepad will remain in Windows 11, and Microsoft’s attitude to this is very different in that it’s still actively developing this lightweight text editing app. Notepad has been fleshed out beyond its traditional simplicity to add features such as spellcheck and autocorrect (plus an AI addition could be inbound in the form of Cowriter, even).

Perhaps all of this is happening exactly because WordPad is being dispensed with, so Notepad can be more readily tapped as a mini-Word alternative, as it were.

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Windows 10 support ending could be an environmental disaster that puts 240 million PCs on the scrapheap

Windows 10 running out of road for support is going to be something of an environmental disaster in terms of old PCs going into landfills, an analyst firm has warned.

Canalys wrote an article on the state of the PC market and Windows 10’s end-of-support date, which rolls around in October 2025 – still some way off, of course, but getting closer all the time.

The core issue here is not just support coming to an end for Windows 10 in just under two years, but that the hardware requirements for Windows 11 – ruling out PCs with older CPUs, and machines that lack Trusted Platform Module (TPM) 2.0 security functionality – mean that those computers likely won’t be recycled either.

As Canalys puts it: “Despite the channel’s growing capabilities to support circularity, partners will not be able to refurbish and resell PCs unsupported by Windows 11.”

The end result will be an estimated 240 million PCs becoming e-waste, which is around a fifth of all Windows 10 devices. Canalys underlines this by saying: “If these were all folded laptops, stacked one on top of another, they would make a pile 600km taller than the moon.”

It’s a stark, bleak image, though Canalys also observes that Microsoft does offer ways to extend support for Windows 10 – at a cost, naturally. You’ll be able to pay for updates to continue to be piped through, as was the case with Windows 7 when its support expired. In fact, you’ll be able to keep on going for another three years this way.

The trouble is that with Windows 7, Microsoft cranked up the costs of this scheme considerably with every additional year. Given that, Canalys argues that it likely won’t be a cost-effective way for most businesses and individual users to proceed – and upgrading to a Windows 11 system will be the sensible path to take from a cost perspective.

This will be good news for PC manufacturers, but not so great news for the environment. Indeed, Canalys expects the PC market to grow again next year – by 8% in 2024, in fact – in contrast to this year, during which a sales slump hit vendors hard (Apple in particular struggled with Mac sales).

Analysis: Growing pressure on Microsoft

This isn’t the first warning of this nature about how Windows 11’s system requirements are bad news.

In October, PIRG, the Public Interest Research Group in the US, made an even gloomier forecast of 400 million Windows 10 PCs ending up on the scrapheap, and that the end of support for the old OS could usher in the biggest rise ever seen with junked computers.

Of course, you could argue that Windows 10 has been around since 2015, and in 2025, that’ll be a full decade of its existence – and you can’t expect an operating system to last forever. We’d agree with that, but the catch is, as mentioned, that Windows 11’s requirements (in particular the need for TPM 2.0) are a concrete wall blocking upgrades for many users or businesses – something that has not been the case before.

After several high-profile calls for action on this front, how will Microsoft respond? Maybe we can hope that the pricing for extended support for Windows 10 is reined in, compared to what was charged for Windows 7 (with an escalating scale as time went on, going up a lot in the final year).

We shall see, but a lot of noise is now being made about dire e-waste concerns here, and this is a topic Microsoft has been keen to be proactive with of late (in terms of more sustainable and easily repaired hardware, for example).

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Microsoft has tossed a Windows 11 help feature on the scrapheap – probably because of Copilot

Windows 11’s 23H2 update has recently been released, and while that annual upgrade obviously adds features, some have also been dropped by Microsoft.

PhantomOfEarth picked up on this, spotting that Microsoft just added the latest round of cutting to its list of deprecated features for Windows 11, and posting on X (formerly Twitter) to let us know.

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The big move here – and the only one that’ll affect consumers (the others are business-related) – is the deprecation of the Tips app in Windows 11.

This means that Tips will remain in Windows 11 for now, but in stasis, with no further development – and it’s scheduled to be removed in a future update of the OS.

Microsoft does, however, observe that in this case the app will continue to get (small) updates with info about new Windows features.

The Tips app provides help for Windows 11 users regarding customizing the interface, as well as imparting useful keyboard shortcuts and other miscellaneous tips, and highlighting new features that have arrived in the operating system.

PhantomOfEarth also recently tweeted about another interesting change for Windows 11, namely the ability to make custom commands for the Voice Access feature. This is still a long way off, as it’s not even live in testing, but hidden in the background – even so, it’d be an excellent addition on the accessibility front.

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Analysis: Clearing the way for Copilot?

It’s likely that with the next major update for Windows 11 – which could turn it into Windows 12, maybe, later next year – the Tips app will get the axe and be fully removed.

In fairness, this app isn’t the greatest help resource anyway, but nonetheless, for those new to Windows, it could be useful. That said, we’re betting there’s a reason for it being ditched now – namely Copilot.

Remember that in a year’s time, a fully developed Copilot AI – which will doubtless have been considerably bolstered over the course of 2024 – will be able to handle all help duties ably. We’d imagine that’s the plan, anyway.

Microsoft appears to be on a spree of tidying up Windows 11 of late, as we recently saw the Windows Maps and Movies & TV applications being removed from default installations of the OS.

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