Now rolling out in beta to Windows Insiders with PCs enrolled in the Windows 11 Canary and Dev channel are three new features for the Photos app. There's a new slideshow experience, a timeline scrollbar, and the ability to fix blemishes in photos with a spot fix tool.
These new features are currently exclusive to Windows Insiders but will be rolling out in version 2023.11050.2013.0 of the Photos app which can be downloaded from the Microsoft Store. The top feature for sure is spot fix. It's a new image-editing tool that you'll find under the Retouch menu when you go to edit a photo. Just tap or click on a spot in the photo where you see a blemish, and use the mouse to adjust the size of the fix. This is an excellent tool that you'll usually only find in an app like Photoshop.
There's also the new slideshow experience, where you can now view photos with unique transitions, and animations, and in up to 25 different music soundtracks. You can trigger this by clicking a photo to start a slideshow, and then find all the controls from a submenu at the top of your photo. Microsoft says that this was a top feature request from the community.
As for the other feature in testing in the Photos app, it's one that is making a return after being removed. Now, you'll see the tImeline scrollbar to the side of the app in the All Photos, OneDrive, and iCloud Photos gallery views. This view groups photos by year and month, and with the new scrollbar, you can scroll back in time to find a photo from a specific date more easily.
The other changes in this new release can be seen below. These are smaller quality-of-life fixes for things like important photos, copying and pasting photos, and selecting multiple photos in the gallery.
- Auto Enhance is now available for use without having to install the 93MB add-on.
- When importing photos from external devices, you can now drag and drop to choose the photos you want and use the quick toggle to confirm the files that have been selected.
- Hidden iCloud Photos will no longer display in the gallery.
- Fixed an issue where audio on video files is muted by default. The app now plays the audio by default and persists user settings across videos.
- Copying and pasting a photo from the Photos app into Outlook and Teams now inserts the image inline by default instead of adding an attachment.
- Multi-select photos: hold down the SHIFT key while selecting photos in the gallery now selects multiple consecutive photos in a row; holding down the CTRL key selects multiple non-consecutive photos.
Again, these features are only for Windows Insiders right now. Once Microsoft finishes testing, they'll roll it out to the retail version of Windows 11. Windows Insiders can update the Photos app by going to the Microsoft Store, clicking Library, then Get for Updates.