Top 30 must-have apps for Windows 11

by Cesar Cadenas
Cesar Cadenas
Cesar Cadenas
Cesar has been writing for and about technology going on for 6 years when he first started writing tech articles for his university paper. Since then, his passion... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • Windows 11 allows for a wide variety of apps on its OS, but choosing the right ones could be troublesome.
  • Some of the best apps include grouping social media accounts together and customizing the OS's interface.
  • We suggested a variety of useful apps including photo editing software, browsers, and media players.

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Although Windows 11 has only been around for a short time, there are already tons of apps that aim to improve your experience and boost your computer’s performance.

UI customization, entertainment, video games, screenshotting apps, and more. The Microsoft Store has also been improved upon to host thousands of third-party apps on top of its own that bring new features and cater to specific needs.

This is a much-appreciated change compared to years prior when the Microsoft Store would only allow Universal Windows Apps on its platform. As a result, third-party app developers were locked out.

Now apps like Canva, WinZip, and Zoom are on Windows 11’s Microsoft Store, making it easier to download these apps and extending their reach. In addition, you no longer have to go to the developer’s website.

Some users have experienced issues with the Microsoft Store getting the update process stuck on pending.

Which Apps Should I Choose?

With so many apps available, it can be challenging to figure out which ones are the best. It all depends on what you, as a user of Windows 11, are looking for in an app.

Conclusion: there are calendars for those seeking to improve their productivity and not get distracted and many communications apps.

To help you choose, this list will point out some of the best Windows 11 apps that every user should try out, whether it’s to better productivity or customize their machine. The purpose of this guide is to inform you better.

Most helpful apps can be downloaded from the Microsoft Store, but they can also be installed directly from the developer’s website.


Table of contents

  1. Privacy and security
  2. Browsers
  3. OS optimization
  4. Customization apps
  5. Productivity apps
  6. Social media
  7. Media players
  8. Emulator software
  9. Image processing

Privacy and security

➡ Best antivirus for Windows 11

ESET Internet Security

ESET Internet Security is the best antivirus software for your Windows 11 computer. It will protect you against malware from viruses to worms and even spyware.

And if you or someone else is a big gamer, ESET is a good choice because it doesn’t eat up a lot of a computer’s resources and is pretty unintrusive. Its low-power background activity won’t mess with any computer systems while keeping everything secure.

ESET also provides privacy protection to keep your identity safe while shopping online. It will also check your network and other intelligent devices for any vulnerabilities and can prevent any lousy actor from gaining access to your webcam.

The free version of ESET is already a great option, but paid subscriptions are for those who want more coverage for their home or business. The subscriptions add new protection features like a password manager, data protection, and more across multiple devices.

Get ESET Internet Security

➡ Best VPN for Windows 11

PIA (Private Internet Access)

Branded as the number one most trusted VPN in the United States, Private Internet Access (PIA) is a fantastic virtual private network app. It has proven quite popular.

It boasts more than 100,000 users with over 30,000 servers across 78 countries. In addition, PIA has high encryption features and a strict no-logs policy, which play a massive role in the VPN’s popularity.

You can use this VPN to hide your IP address, change your location, and avoid blocks, a type of technology that prevents you from gaining access to content in another country.

PIA does much of what many other VPNs do, but what sets it apart is its unique optimization for gaming and full support for the WireGuard protocol for a lightning-fast connection.

Speaking of a fast connection, the company behind PIA has exclusive DNS servers to allow these high speeds, and the app has a native port forward mode to help locate game servers quickly.

You can try PIA risk-free for 30 days if you go to PIA’s website. Once the trial is over, you can subscribe to PIA for a little over $2 a month.

Get PIA (Private Internet Access)

Browsers

Opera

As a web browser, Opera is one of the fastest and most optimized for surfing the web. It’s powered by the Chromium engine developed by Google to bring lighting fast speeds without eating up too much of a computer’s RAM.

Opera isn’t as popular as Mozilla Firefox or Chrome, but it’s the superior web browser in some instances. In addition to its good RAM usage, you can customize Opera with tons of extensions and it even has a built-in VPN.

And for the gamers, you may be pleased to learn that the company behind Opera has a gamer-focused web browser called Opera GX. This rendition has a built-in CPU and RAM limited, so it doesn’t get in the way, and Twitch and Discord integration is popular gaming platforms.

Messaging apps are built-in Opera, so you can chat with your friends without having to switch tabs or open up a new app. It’s all conveniently located in one central location. And you can synchronize all Opera browsers across your devices, including bookmarks and extensions.

Get Opera


Mozilla Firefox

Windows 11 supports many different internet browsers, all of which are good and come recommended. Even the built-in Microsoft Edge is a great browser, leaps, and bounds better than Internet Explorer. But, if there’s one browser that stands above the rest, it’s Mozilla Firefox.

Firefox is similar to Google Chrome in that it has a large number of plugins and extensions available to it, like Adblocker and Grammarly, as well as some that are exclusive to the browser. It also boasts new protection measures like utilizing DNS instead of HTTPS in the United States.

By making DNS its standard, Firefox keeps internet service providers and websites from tracking and using your data without your permission. And because it blocks out all these people from keeping tabs, web pages load faster and consume less RAM overall.

Security is something Mozilla holds in higher regard with an incognito mode that has been recognized as one of the more secure options across other browsers. In addition, it’s a lightweight browser that eats up fewer computer resources leading to a more enjoyable experience.

Get Mozilla Firefox


Google Chrome

Developed by Google, the Chrome web browser is one of the most popular browsers. Thanks to its vast library of extensions, it has customization potential. After enough time, no two people will have the same Chrome browser; each one will feel unique; although almost everyone has Adblock.

GoogGoogle’snges to the Windows 11 version of Chrome are minimal for the most part. TheyThey’retly limited to the menus and not much in the backend. As a result, rounded corners and shadowy effects are visible when you right-click anywhere inside the browser or open the main menu.

Chrome isn’t the perfect web browser ever as it is very gamer-friendly. In addition, it eats up a lot of the computer memory, especially when multiple tabs are open.

If you’re one who plays games and cares about their performance, then Chrome is not the one for you. But if you don’t about that and are primarily interested in the vast customization options, then Chrome is the best.

Get Google Chrome

OS optimization

Restoro

A type of app that is often overlooked is PC repair toolkits. They are a tool that, as the name suggests, fix problems on Windows computers, and there are many of them out there.

Windows 11 already has one in the form of Windows Repair, but it’s good for networking issues. A much better option is Restoro, one of the best repair toolkits out there.

Restoro can repair damaged system files to corrupt DLLs and more. On top of multiple troubleshooting options, the app also cleans up your PC by locating and removing viruses. It’sIt’sost like a mini-antivirus software app.

The app has access to a 25 million file database filled with Windows files, so anything that needs to be replaced comes straight from Microsoft itself. All of this is packaged in a user-friendly interface that is easy to pick up.

The critical information about the PC’sPC’stus is displayed on the front and offers quick access to this data. And the best part, it’s free.

 Get Restoro


CCleaner

If you’re looking for a different Windows 11 optimizer, look no further than CCleaner. It’sIt’s of the most used system optimizers globally, with over 2.5 billion downloads.

The app comes with several useful features like searching for and deleting duplicate files that shouldn’t be there and an Uninstall button to get rid of software. In addition, you no longer have to open up the Windows 11 list of programs to uninstall an app.

Under the hood, CCleaner comes with a far-reaching hard disk and registry cleaner that is exceptional at fixing DLL issues. The registry cleaner has a Missing Shared DLLs checkbox, which, if you click it, searches for any missing or broken DLL files that it can fix or replace.

CCleaner includes a startup manager that can control which apps open when you turn on your computer; that way, a thousand windows don’t appear at once.

CCleaner is available as a free trial, but you can buy the Pro version, which comes with customer support and a driver updater if you feel so inclined.

 Get CCleaner


One Commander file manager

In the same vein as changing the layout, One Commander is a remarkably well-made file manager app for Windows 11. Microsoft tried to optimize Windows 11’s11’se manager to improve its usability. However, an unintended consequence of these changes is that they made some settings complex.

Unfortunately, the base OS doesn’t have much flexibility in this regard. That is until One Commander showed up. One Commander is an alternative to Windows 11’s11’se manager and can be customized to suit your needs.

Downloading and setting it up is pretty straightforward and can be downloaded right from the Microsoft Store. During the setup, you have various options to choose from, such as five different themes, changing the taskbar layout, and even the ability to create a design similar to macOS.

Best of all, it has no ads, but there’s also a version that adds more extra features like Long Unicode Path and Quicklook support. Many people seem to enjoy One Commander, as it currently sits with a 4.3-star rating in the Microsoft Store.

⇒ Get One Commander

Customization apps

Start11

The new interface for Windows 11 is one of its most controversial aspects. While many people enjoy the new look, others would prefer going back to a style closer to Windows 10. The older operating system had Live Tiles and other unique customization options for the Start menu.

This is why the Start11 app from Stardock is a great product to try out. Start11 brings different layout styles to Windows 11 without going back to Windows 10. Not only that, you can customize the Start menu to your liking.

In addition to a Windows 10 style, you can also choose a Windows 7 style if you missed that old version or create a unique one all on your own.

You can bring back the tiled interface and change it to your liking, thanks to its customization options on Start11. It even allows dragging the Taskbar to the top of the screen.

You do have to purchase Start11, which comes in three different plans with a fourth one on its way. The base product gives one active, with the Multi-Device package giving you five installs. The most expensive package transforms the Windows 11 experiences and offers a suite of other apps from Stardock, including Fences 4.

Get Start11


Lively Wallpaper

Lively Wallpaper is a free and open-source third-party app that you can download from the Microsoft Store. It’sIt’sapp that allows you to set up GIFs, videos, and webpages as your PC’sPC’skground.

The app is in tune with what goes on a Windows 11 computer as it was explicitly designed not to take a lot of resources. So, for example, if you’re working on the computer or playing a video game, the wallpaper playback will pause and take none of the computer resources, thus saving processing power.

Lively Wallpaper has powerful technology behind it to make active wallpapers possible. The app is powered by Chromium Embedded Framework (CEF), which allows you to set any website as a wallpaper. And the API behind it makes it so that the wallpaper can react to system audio.

It also supports multiple displays of any aspect ratio and solution with its video playback powered by an MPV player, which allows you to set any video as wallpaper.

And the best of it is that it is completely free; tons of customization options for zero cost. Although, there is a photosensitive seizure warning for the app.

Get Lively Wallpaper


RoundedTB

RoundedTB is a third-party app that allows you to customize the taskbar in Windows 11. With it, you can round out the corners of the taskbar, split it into sections, or add a space between the screen and the bar itself.

You can also control how many pixels are removed from the sides of the taskbar for the margins and how round the corners should be. Again, the change can be made without modifying anything in the system or making permanent changes.

For those who want total control over their taskbar, a series of advanced options allow for further customization. For example, Dynamic Mode is available, which resizes the toolbar to accommodate the number of app icons.

It’s found on the Microsoft Store with the latest version has fixed some bugs and improved the app’s performance. Version 3.1 also brought in new features like Fill Taskbar When Maximized, which restores the taskbar to its normal appearance when a window is maximized.

Get RoundedTB


Productivity apps

Libre Office

Microsoft Office plays a vital role in the lives of many professionals, but the biggest problem is, to get the most out of it, you will have to pay. Microsoft Office can be pricey. Many alternatives are all good and free, like the internet browsers, but the best choice is Libre Office.

Libre Office is compatible with all of MicrMicrosoft’sument formats and has all the features of the latest version of Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. On top of being up to date, LibrLibre’s programs cover any office needs. The programs are Writer, Calc, Impress, Draw, Math, and Base.

Other suites will be similar to the first three programs, but the last group is unique to Libre. They are designed for drawing vector diagrams, mathematical functions, and databases. Microsoft has the same thing, too, in the form of the Access suite.

Libre Office has a wide selection of extensions and templates, and it’s useful for both business and home users. The latest version adds new features and fixes like new help pages and an improved file import.

Get Libre Office


WPS Office

Another great option is WPS Office. It’sIt’serfect alternative to MicrMicrosoft’ste and comes with unique features that its competitors don’t have.

For example, WPS Office comes with Eye Protection mode that adds a green tint to the page. This protects the user against eye strain and is especially useful for people who work long hours on their computers or at night.

It’sIt’so much more user-friendly than Microsoft Word, as the app comes with tabs that allow you quickly switch multiple in-between documents in a single window, much like a web browser.

Office enables its user to easily read and import files, something you wouldn’t get with Microsoft’s edition. The ribbon on top of the page is also more user-friendly with easily identifiable widgets.

If you don’t know how it all looks, you change the WPS Office interface with a few clicks. The free version is already a fantastic download, but if you’re interested in advanced functions like exporting PDFs, you’ll want to subscribe to the paid version.

Get WPS Office


Be Focused

A feature that is often looked over in Windows 11 is the new Focus assist element in the Clock app. Focus assist stops notifications from popping on the screen and allows you to set a timer for keeping track of your workflow. It even has Spotify integration, so you can listen to music while working.

All in all, it’s a good feature, but there’s an app that does this even better, and it’s called Be Focused. This app gives you even more control over your tasks by allowing you to break up your work into smaller chunks and essentially micromanage everything. You can even include time for small breaks so you can take a breather.

By adding these breaks in, you will be able to maintain motivation and focus on the task at hand. And the reason this app is so effective is that it incorporates the Pomodoro Technique.

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management system that breaks up your day into 25-minute intervals, and after each interval, you take a 5-minute break. It’sIt’snt to instill a sense of urgency and cure burnout.

On top of that, Be Focused has other features like task management tools and statistics for the project. A paid premium version includes Calendar synchronization and white noise support.

Get Be Focused


Grammarly

Whether you’re a professional writer or you’re just writing an email, you have to ensure that your message is clear and grammatically correct, and one way to do that is with Grammarly.

This service is incredibly simple to use, and you just need to create a free account and download the app to use it. Simply start typing and the Grammarly will let you know if you have any spelling errors.

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Besides spelling, the software will check your punctuation thus ensuring that everything you write is easy to understand and presented clearly.

The software will also help you ensure that your text is concise and offer you alternative words or phrases that would fit the text better.

There are also several formality levels to choose from, so you can make your text look casual or you can make it formal thanks to the built-in suggestions.

Lastly, there are vocabulary suggestions that will help you expand your vocabulary and achieve a more professional and concise tone.

Regarding the availability, thanks to the browser add-on you can use this service in all major email clients, social media websites, document editors, and almost any website on the web.

Get Grammarly


ShareX

Changing the way you take screenshots isn’t something that most people think about. After all, Windows 11 already comes with its screenshot tool with the Snipping Tool, so this begs the question as to why anyone would need a third-party app.

ShareX is a screenshot tool that is much more flexible than what the Snipping Tool can offer. In addition to taking screenshots, it allows you to capture video recordings and use that to create GIFs. The app has multiple capture mods from Fullscreen to Window to a specific Region and a Webpage capture.

For Region specifically, you can configure the mode to capture screenshots as a particular shape like a circular point of view or a triangle. In addition, ShareX has a variety of customizable hotkeys for each screen capture mode, so you don’t have to keep the window open constantly.

The editor on ShareX is pretty elaborate with its features. Besides cropping, you can easily blur sensitive information in screenshots, add watermarks, draw on them, and select unique filters. Uploading images is as simple as dragging and dropping them in the app, and ShareX uploads automatically to Imgur so you can easily share the link.

Get ShareX


Winzip 26

You will need to share a file over email at some point in time but discover it’s way too big to attach because of the limit size placed by the email service provider. So, you’ll need to compress the file.

Windows 11 already comes with its file compressor with the ‘Extract All’ option, but like with many things on the operating system, it is limited in what it can do. The best alternative is WinZip 26, the latest version of the compression app.

The free version allows you to unzip over 17 different file formats. It also protects, shares, and helps manage your files in a few clicks. In addition, its compression technology is top-notch and saves a ton of room on your computer.

You can also purchase the Pro version, of which there are different types. The Standard Suite allows you to connect to Dropbox, Google Drive, and other cloud computing apps.

The Pro Suite allows you to control the type of encryption methods, while the Ultimate Suite can send massive file sizes. For the modern worker, WinZip 26 is a must-have.

Get Winzip 26

Social media apps

Franz

Franz is a multi-channel communication platform that supports tons of messaging apps. Apps like Slack, Skype, Telegram, Discord, LinkedIn, and others similar to it can be rounded up into one singular house.

The purpose of Franz is to be used as a way to allocate all the business chat apps and make it easy to manage people from there, but you can also use it to keep in touch with friends across different social media sites.

With Franz, you no longer have to maintain multiple apps or tabs open in a web browser to access each social media app separately. Instead, juggling between them is simultaneous and easy; all you have to do is click on the corresponding icon.

For professionals who talk to other people across different apps, it’s a must-have, primarily if you work from home. The base plan is free but only allows you to connect up to three apps and have desktop notifications.

There are two paid plans, Personal and Professional. Depending on which one you get, you will gain access to an unlimited amount of services, unique workspaces, and zero ads.

Get Franz


Zoom

The Zoom app has been around for quite a long time, since 2013, but it only really exploded in popularity during 2020 and quickly became a must-have app on Windows 11 computers. It’sIt’sideo conferencing app that allows anyone to host virtual meetings and has tons of features.

Since it rose in popularity, Zoom has quickly churned out new features as demand for them increased. The elements run from high-definition video chats and conferences to instant messaging and screen sharing.

It has many built-in functionalities to improve the video and picture experience and enhance it with virtual background and various filters.

Zoom is easy to use thanks to its user-friendly interface and works in various situations, from personal calls to business. There are so many video conferencing apps out there, but none beat Zoom for the top. It’s a vital app for today’s work environment.

Get Zoom


WhatsApp for Desktop

If you’re looking for a handy social media app to focus on the task at hand, WhatsApp is a perfect choice. It is, by far, the most popular messaging app in the world, with billions of active users around the globe.

It’s available on mobile devices and tablets with a desktop app that came out fairly recently. WhatsApp for Desktop is convenient if you don’t want to keep looking at your phone every so often while you work.

You can set the notifications to appear on your display and respond to them there, just like the mobile version. Over the years, WhatsApp has gotten tons of new features to make the app more engaging.

On top of calling and messaging, you can shoot videos on WhatsApp and share stories for people on your contacts list to see. It has end-to-end encryption, so everything you send is secure and safe from hackers

Get WhatsApp for Desktop

Media players

VLC Media Player

VLC Media Player is among the best media players out there on the market. It’s a free and open-source media player available on all platforms and operating systems, not just Windows 11. It’s been around for a long time and is still popular.

Its popularity can be attributed to the fact that it can play pretty much any kind of file. VLC can play files straight from a source like DVDs, live streams, and webcams and even has a video filtration feature that operates on streams.

It supports various formats, including MPEG-2, WebM, gif, MP3, MKV, and more. In addition, the latest version of VLC now supports 360-degree videos and can go as high as 8K resolution if your computer supports it. And the best part is that it’s free and has no spyware, ads, or user tracking.

Under the hood, VLC has a wide variety of tools and controls like the ability to decode video incredibly fast so that you watch content in record time. VLC is pretty complicated to use, which is its downside. However, it is still the best media player on the OS.

Get VLC


BS.Player

This is a well-known multimedia software that has been around for years, and it allows you to play various video formats, including AVCHD video. Speaking of formats, there’s DVD support as well as improved VMR9 support.

The application will automatically search for subtitles of any multimedia and save them to your hard drive, so you won’t have to do that manually ever again. There’s even a built-in editor, so you can easily correct your subtitles if needed.

Using this software you can play YouTube videos and save them to your local drive if you choose to do so.
Frame capturing is also available, allowing you to easily save any frame of the video that is currently playing. To make this process easier, you can use the built-in frame playback feature.

Of course, you can adjust the playback speed any way you want, so you can focus on even the smallest details while playing videos.

BSPlayer also supports capture and tuner devices, and it can even record video to a file. It’s also worth mentioning that the software is highly customizable with skins, so you can easily change the graphics interface of the player.

Get BS.Player


KMPlayer

KMPlayer is another great media player for Windows 11 that plays almost every format, just like VLC Player. But what sets this media player apart is its simple interface. KMPlaydon’tso has fewer options and features that make it easier to use.

Of course, the offset is that it doesn’t provide the same customization potential as VLC, but that’s the sacrifice made for its simplicity. Regarding video support, KMPlayer can play UHD, 4K, and 8K videos at 60 fps without a problem.

It also supports hardware acceleration so that the media player doesn’t use too much of the computer’s CPU. In addition, the app has extensive support for different subtitle formats and the ability to download online content.

And speaking of online content, KMPlayer has a GIF creation feature that can come in handy for those interested. And just like VLC Player, it’s free to download from the company website.

Get KMPlayer


GOM Player

GOM Player is currently one of the most popular media players in the world. The software can work with almost any video, audio, or subtitle format.

It’s important to mention that this app comes with built-in codecs, so you won’t have to install anything else to enjoy your favorite videos.

Subtitle support is also available, so you won’t have to manually search for subtitles ever again. Thanks to the 10-year-old database, you can easily get the desired subtitles for any movie with a single click.

Besides regular videos, this software supports 360-degree VR Playback. Another feature that deserves a mention is the ability to finely control the media playback.

By doing so, you can easily sync the subtitles or capture the screen. It’s important to mention that the software supports 4K playback allowing you to experience the highest video quality.

Lastly, there’s a sleek user interface that won’t get in your way while viewing multimedia, so you can completely immerse yourself in the playback.

Get GOM Player

Emulator software

Bluestacks

When Windows 11 was first announced, one of the new features Microsoft touted around was the inclusion of Android apps on the system. Unfortunately, the Android app feature has not been fully implemented yet and is currently exclusive to the Windows Insider Program, where you have to download the Windows 11 beta.

If you don’t want to wait until the feature rolls out, then Bluestacks is recommended. Bluestacks is a virtual machine that allows you to download an Android operating system and run it on your Windows 11 computer. Unfortunately, the intended Windows 11 Android feature only allows you to download apps from the Amazon Appstore.

But with Bluestacks, you download apps from the Google Play Store, which has a much more extensive selection of apps. You can house TikTok and Instagram on your computer alongside many mobile games.

You can also change the hardware settings on Bluestacks to have it emulate different smartphones, from Galaxy S20+ to the OnePlus 5.

Get Bluestack

LD Player

LD Player is a free Android emulator that offers extensive functionality to its users. In addition, it provides users with high performance to enjoy any Android game without any stuttering or lag.

By using this software, you can play your favorite games using a mouse and keyboard, thus gaining a significant advantage over other users.

The application supports multitasking, allowing you to have several games open, so you can easily switch between them with a single click.

That’s not all; you can even open several instances of the same game and sync your input. By doing so, you can speed up tedious tasks that require a lot of repetitive tapping.

Speaking of repetitive tasks, the software supports macros and scripts, allowing you to automatize actions and perform complex tasks with a single click.

Regarding compatibility, LD Player fully supports a wide array of apps and games, so you should be able to run almost any Android app without issues.

Get LD Player

Image processing apps

Adobe Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop is the king of all image editing software by far. It set the standard for the entire tech industry and others worldwide. As a result, almost every image editing app on the market is heavily inspired by Photoshop and takes many cues.

As the standard defining app, it has an impressive collection of features, tools, and presets to help people create fantastic works of art. However, Adobe has never been satisfied with keeping Photoshop and always strives to make the app more than what it was before.

It has powerful graphic editing tools, each with several online learning resources and loads of tutorials. Photoshop doesn’t change too much as the new versions roll out. The toolbar is still on the left and the layers on the right so that you can pick up on the new feature pretty quickly.

You will have to subscribe to Photoshop to use the latest tools, which can be pretty expensive. There is a standalone version that you can own permanently with the CS6 version, but it lacks several new devices.

Get Adobe Photoshop


Darktable

If you’re a photographer, you’ve probably worked with RAW files in the past. These files require special, usually expensive, software to work with, but that’s not always the case.

Darktable is an open source photography workflow application, and it can be used to develop RAW photos. The software offers GPU acceleration, and all actions are incredibly fast thanks to OpenCL support.

The software offers non-destructive editing, meaning that all information from your photos will be preserved, no matter how much you edit your photos.

The app offers professional color management, as well as advanced filtering, so you can easily rate or assign labels or tags to your photos.

As for the supported formats, you can work with JPEG, CR2, NEF, HDR, PFM, RAF, and many others. We also have to mention the powerful export system that supports Piwigo web albums, disk storage, direct copies, and more.

If you’re working with dozens of images, you always automate repetitive tasks by creating your custom scripts in Lua.

Get Darktable


GIMP

The GNU Image Manipulation Program, or GIMP for short, is a free photo editing app similar in form and factor to Adobe Photoshop. Photoshop is the better software because it has tons of plugins and new features like Cisn’tt Credentials to help combat copyright misuse.

However, Adobe products are notoriously expensive, so your next bet is to get GIMP. The app boasts a massive plugin library and presets, which can be found online for free. You can also customize its interface to suit personal preferences better. Thanks to its plethora of handy tools, it’s the perfect choice for professional editors.

And like Photoshop, GIMP comes stacked with great features like multiple input and output file format support, single click retouching techniques, content-aware resizing, animated GIFs, layer masks, face swaps, curves, etc. Animations can be loaded and saved with the frame-as-layer format.

GIMP is exceptional in animation editing. You can also manipulate high-quality photos and profound design elements. It’s a massive package that comes for free. The latest version of GIMP adds an updated user interface that allows users to pick from Dark, Grisn’tight, and System. You customize it all to suit your needs.

Get GIMP

Are the default apps on Windows 11 any good?

Everything listed is all third-party apps, but that isn’t to say Windows 11 comes installed with poor quality apps. If anything, Microsoft did well when creating new versions of their apps; however, the usage of the default options is limited in what they can do. But, again, they’re not wrong; they are just OK at what they do.

The apps shown off are among the best on the market and meet the needs of professionals and casuals alike. Microsoft apps have improvements but ultimately fail in providing some of the advanced features that come standard in other apps.

A primary user may be OK with using the Paint app, but experienced people would rather have something like GIMP with its advanced abilities and specialized software. In addition, Microsoft wants Windows 11 owners to use its default apps over third-party ones.

Microsoft has been criticized for making it difficult for users to switch from default browsers and apps to a preferred ones in the past few months. The process isn’t that difficult, but with the extra steps that have been added, it can be pretty annoying for users to deal with.

That said, Windows 11 has much to offer new users. But, first, you should scope out the Microsoft Store and see what other exciting apps you can find there. Some of the ones listed in this guide can be found there.

Feel free to leave a comment below if you have any questions on other Windows 11 apps or if you have some that you recommend. Also, feel free to leave comments about guides that you’d like to see or information on other Windows 11 features.

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