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New Windows 11 Builds bring Taskbar search & Voice access improvements to Beta

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Microsoft has released two new Windows 11 Builds to Beta channel. Insiders in Beta channel are receiving the Windows 11 Build 22621.1037 and Build 22623.1037 (KB5021304). The Build 22623.1037 brings Taskbar search and Voice access improvements. It also brings many fixes for Taskbar and Task manager.

Coming to details now, the Build 22623.1037 has brought improvements to Voice access. It is now more flexible and supports interaction with UI controls having different names. Insiders can also notice changes to Taskbar search on their PC. They can also change the treatment of search on taskbar in settings under Settings > Personalization > Taskbar > Taskbar Items.

Here is the full changelog provided for the Build 22621.1037 and Build 22623.1037 by Microsoft.

What’s new in Build 22623.1037

Voice Access Improvements

Voice access is now more flexible and supports interaction with UI controls having different names such as:

  • Names which contain numbers in them, for example the Calculator app where you can now directly say “Click 5”.
  • Names without any whitespaces between them, for example in Excel, under the Insert tab, you can interact with UI controls like “PivotTable” and “PivotChart” directly by saying “click pivot table” or “click pivot chart”.
  • Names with special characters in them, for example items like “Bluetooth & devices” or “Dial – up”. You can now say “click Bluetooth and devices” or “click dial hyphen up” and interact with these UI controls.

We have improved the horizontal scroll experience where we now support scrolling to the extreme left and right ends of a page, and you can do a continuous scroll left/right similar to what is already present in vertical scroll experience.

We have also added support for UI controls such as spin controls, thumb control and split buttons which enables you to interact with these controls with “click” command or by using number overlays. Commands that move the cursor in a text box now execute instantly and issues with snapping commands that snap a window left or right are fixed.

In addition, we have added support for the following commands:

To do this Say this
Close the voice access application “Close voice access”, “Exit voice access”, “Quit voice access”
Open a new application “Show [application name]” , e.g., “Show Edge”
Close an application “Exit/Quit [application name]”, e.g., “Exit Word”, “Quit Edge”
Show grid overlay on your screen “Show window grid”
Pull up the command help list “Show command list”, “Show commands”
Release a held down key “Release”
Move cursor in a text box “Move forward 5 characters”, “Go back 2 lines”, “Go to start of document”, “Move to beginning of line”
Select the desired no. of characters/lines “Select forward/backward [count] characters/lines”, e.g., “Select forward 5 characters”
Delete selected text or last dictated text “Strike that”
Paste text in a text box “Paste here”, “paste that”
Apply bold formatting to specific text “Boldface [text]”, e.g., “boldface hello world”
Capitalize selected text or last dictated text “Cap that”


FEEDBACK: Please file feedback in Feedback Hub (WIN + F) under Accessibility > Voice Access.

Changes and Improvements for BOTH Build 22621.1037 & 22623.1037

[Search on the Taskbar]

  • In this build, we are continuing to try out different treatments for how search looks on the taskbar. We are excited to learn from your feedback on this, so please let us know what you think via Feedback Hub if you see the different treatments on your PC. Insiders who get this experience will have the ability to change the treatment of search on taskbar in settings under Settings > Personalization > Taskbar > Taskbar Items.
Example of different treatments we are trying out for how search looks on the taskbar.

Fixes in Build 22623.1037

[Taskbar & System Tray]

  • Updated the Quick Settings icons in the taskbar when using a screen reader so if you set focus to each of the icons it no longer includes the words system state and instead just says what the icon is (for example instead of “system volume state” it just says “volume”).
  • Fixed a few more explorer.exe crashes relating to recent taskbar changes.

[Task Manager]

  • We fixed the issue causing Task Manager to become unresponsive when using the search box at the top of Task Manager.

Fixes for BOTH Build 22621.1037 & Build 22623.1037

  • We fixed a known issue that might have affected Task Manager. It might have displayed certain elements in the user interface (UI) in unexpected colors. Some parts of the UI might not have been readable. This issue might have occurred if you had “Choose your mode” set to “Custom” in the Personalization > Colors section of Settings.
  • We fixed an issue that might have affected Data Protection Application Programming Interface (DPAPI) decryption. The decryption of a certificate private key might have failed. Because of that, virtual private network (VPN) and other 802.1 certificate-based authentication might have failed. This issue might have occurred when you encrypted the DPAPI master key with a wrong value.
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