Windows 11 is getting a big upgrade for multitaskers — what you need to know

Windows 11 logo on a laptop screen
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Microsoft is working on a Windows 11 update meant to improve the multi-monitor experience. The company released Windows 11 Build 25915 to Insiders in the Canary Channel last week. One of the biggest updates is that Windows 11 will automatically adjust the refresh rate of multiple monitors depending on what’s being displayed on each screen. The update in question could decrease the stress on your GPU when using two or more of the best monitors.

"We have improved refresh rate logic to allow different refresh rates on different monitors, depending on the refresh rate for each monitor and content shown on the screen,” said Microsoft in its Windows Insider blog. “This will help most with refresh rate-dependent multitasking, like playing a game and watching a video at the same time.”

As The Verge notes, running multiple monitors that support high refresh rates can increase a GPU’s power draw. For example, if you’re playing a game on one monitor at 144Hz and watching a video at 30Hz on another, your GPU will try to match the higher refresh rate across both monitors — which could impact your PC’s power usage. With the new update though, monitors will run at different refresh rates, depending on what they’re displaying — potentially lowering the burden on your graphics card.

In addition, this Insider build also has a Dynamic Refresh Rate (DRR) update for laptops. Like the multi-monitor update, this feature keeps your display at a lower refresh rate in order to preserve power when battery saver mode is enabled. This could help the best Windows laptops last even longer.


This update is currently only available to Insiders in the Canary Channel. Because of that, it’s hard to say when it will begin rolling out to the public, or if it will ever see a general release. Given its usefulness though, I’d be surprised if Microsoft shelves this feature — especially since many folks like myself have multi-monitor setups. That being the case, it’s best to be patient since we might not get this update for a few months yet.

We’ll keep you updated on this one and all of the other important Windows 11 updates as we hear about them. Stay tuned for more.

More from Tom's Guide

Tony Polanco
Computing Writer

Tony is a computing writer at Tom’s Guide covering laptops, tablets, Windows, and iOS. During his off-hours, Tony enjoys reading comic books, playing video games, reading speculative fiction novels, and spending too much time on X/Twitter. His non-nerdy pursuits involve attending Hard Rock/Heavy Metal concerts and going to NYC bars with friends and colleagues. His work has appeared in publications such as Laptop Mag, PC Mag, and various independent gaming sites.