Print 122 comment(s) - last by Piiman.. on May 18 at 2:14 PM

Iconic Windows UI element makes a comeback -- but perhaps not how some hoped

In many ways, Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) new Start Screen -- originally codenamed Metro -- represents the old-fashioned start menu on steroids.  There's both good and bad to this; on the one hand it allows for rich animations, powerful sorting, and better support for touch.  On the other hand, many app developers make poor use of its extra space and many users feel it's uncomfortable and bloated on a traditional PC.

As it marches towards Windows 8.1, Microsoft is looking to show it's listening to criticism from its fans -- halfway listening at least.  The Verge is reporting that its sources are saying that the beloved Start Button will make a comeback in the upcoming release.

But this isn't your daddy's start button -- it will dump you right back into the Start Screen (Metro UI) similar to the Charm.

Windows Blue
A new Start Button is reportedly being added to Windows 8.1, but it doesn't work like the start button of yore. [Image Source:]

The second report corroborates  ZDNet's chief Windows expert Mary Jo Foley, who last week said her sources were buzzing over a Start Button comeback, contradicting previous rumors that it would stay dead:

For those looking to stay on the desktop and navigate a more traditional start menu, you can always grab a third-party app like Pokki.  As of January Pokki had already recorded 1.5 million downloads and was used on average 10 times a day by customers, despite Microsoft's insistence that its own internal research showed customers were no longer using the Start Button.  (Pokki monetizes itself via a bundled third-party app store).

Microsoft sold 60 million Windows licenses as of January, but a significant portion of those are though not yet to have made their way to end users.  Regardless of the actual number of live Windows 8 users, it's clear a relatively large minority have opted to restore the Start Button via third party workarounds.

Windows 8.1 will also reportedly have the option to boot directly to desktop via a setting.  The new operating system is expected to launch sometime in the next few months.

Source: ZDNet

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RE: Not a smart move
By inighthawki on 4/22/2013 3:35:58 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, instead of simply not using a new feature of the OS and dealing with a new start screen that provides ALL the functionality of the start menu (since we can't deal with a small UI change), let's all run to a completely new OS with horrible support for all of my current apps and a completely different UI. Makes sense.

RE: Not a smart move
By Belard on 4/22/2013 4:53:32 PM , Rating: 1
Actually... *I HAVE* installed LinuxMint on one of my ThinkPads. Wow, it boots up just as fast as Windows8 (before I murdered it). It now runs Linux full time and it does what it needs to do that ANY computer can do (other than games, Adobe software and TurboTax).

Yes, LINUX is more user functional as a desktop computer than TIFKAM. Printer driver support is poor, but that is not the fault of Linux. But in todays world, how many people actually print?

RE: Not a smart move
By inighthawki on 4/22/2013 5:24:10 PM , Rating: 2
You do realize metro is not the only interface in Win8, right? It has a full-featured desktop with everything in Win7 except a start menu, but has an equal in functionality, albeit fullscreen.

RE: Not a smart move
By Pirks on 4/22/2013 7:47:22 PM , Rating: 1
Belard is so deluded that he doesn't realize shit. He's a mentally sick person who just posted here some really weird lunacy about Windows 8 never being reviewed by major tech sites. He definitely needs help with his head, 'cause he's got brain damaged by trauma, like he fell head down on concrete or something

RE: Not a smart move
By Belard on 4/24/2013 12:40:51 AM , Rating: 2
What? Really OMG!!! I didn't know that when I was using it.

I am so face palmed.

RE: Not a smart move
By inighthawki on 4/24/2013 2:04:15 AM , Rating: 2
Your post didn't seem to indicate it:
"Yes, LINUX is more user functional as a desktop computer than TIFKAM"

Because you know, if you use Windows 8 you are required to use metro and all...

Also is there a reason you use that abbreviation instead of just calling it metro? You're probably just confusing a lot of people who don't know what it stands for.

RE: Not a smart move
By Belard on 4/24/2013 8:53:37 AM , Rating: 2
Well Microsoft said its not metro anymore over some fake BS reason... Somehow people would be confused with the generic metro name with a store?!

Well gee golly, without metro... How would I or anyone launch programs in win8?? Comes back to WHY bother with 8?

RE: Not a smart move
By Piiman on 5/18/2013 2:11:32 PM , Rating: 2
"ALL the functionality of the start menu "

Can you tell me how to organize the start screen into folders then please?

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