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Some flaws exist, but new menu overall should please most everyday users

It appears that Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) effort to bring back the Start Menu in revived form are nearing fruition.  A leaked shot of a Windows machine running Windows "Build 9788" surfaced late last week by a user with the screenname "DUF" in the forums section of the site My Digital Life.
 
While the build carries the title "Windows 8.1 Pro" (the currently available release), this does not appear to undermine the authenticity, according to sources.  Neowin reports:
 
One item about the image that was throwing off users previously is that is says Win 8.1 Pro in the bottom corner. We have spoken to a source close to Microsoft who says that this image appears to be legitimate, and that these builds inside of Microsoft still use this branding, so this is not a big deal.
 
The decision to drop the Start Menu was one of the biggest sources of customer frustration with Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.  After much hemming and hawing, Microsoft finally admitted it goofed and announced at this year's BUILD conference that it would be bringing the iconic menu back.

Windows 9 Start Menu
Windows 9's new "Start Menu" [Image Source: "DUF"/MyDigitalLife Forums]

In its current form, the "new" Start Menu features two panes.  The left pane will include pinned apps, as well as commonly used apps or hubs.  The right will feature a compacted version of your Metro Start screen, with core hubs Microsoft considers important.  If you click the "All Apps" option, reportedly this hub will transform to a list of apps, similar to Windows Phone's scrollable alphabetic listing.
 
One major change is the lack of a folder-based system for accessing apps in the start menu.  This may irk some power users, however, it seems that typically users own use one key executable per major app anyways, and generally giving them that executable faster is probably the most efficient option.
 
On the flip side, the decision to include Metro (Modern UI) style hubs in the left pane leads to some redundancy in the left and right panes as we can see in the screenshot.  Microsoft might want to exclude core hubs that already appear on the right from appearing twice.
 
The current rumor is that Microsoft will release the new Start Menu with Windows "Threshold" (Windows 9?) sometime early next year -- possibly in April.

Sources: MyDigitalLife Forums, via Neowin



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RE: >.<
By nikon133 on 7/14/2014 4:56:17 PM , Rating: 2
You'd have to use system for a few days, or weeks, to understand it. Not necessarily to like it, but it would give you some useful insights. I did use iOS and Android for a significant time before moving to WP, and I do prefer WP.

Start screen is just a collection of favourites; it is not supposed to be pages and pages long, IMHO. Only apps most frequently used. My start screen is around 2 screens tall, so it's easy to flick it up and down.

Everything else is on alphabetical list, which you get when you scroll right from Start screen. It is one list of all apps but organized by alphabet, and it is very easy to jump to desired letter without scrolling through whole list; all you need to know is the name of app you want to run.

Basically, letters in alphabet are acting as folders (in a way that you can "open" specific letter without scrolling through all the letters before that one). Rest is down to preference, sorting apps by name or by purpose. Coming from Windows Desktop background, I'm used to sort programs and folders by name anyway, so there's that. I did category (folder) sorting on iOS and Android, but often would come across apps that are not strictly into one category. Unless I used them often - and some of them I did not - I would be looking through a few folders to find. Alphabet sorting does not give you freedom, but as long as you know app's name, you know exactly where it is.

Works for me.

"Real" folders were promised for incoming WP8.1 GDR1, by the way. Best of both worlds? If executed right. We'll see.


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