Skip to comments.Microsoft may backtrack on Start button in Windows 8
Posted on 04/17/2013 7:35:15 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
Microsoft may recant its Windows 8 design theology, bloggers reported Tuesday, by offering Windows 8 users an option to bypass the "Modern" UI and by restoring the Start button and menu to the beleaguered operating system.
A pair of longtime Microsoft hands, Mary Jo Foley of ZDNet and Tom Warren of The Verge, citing unnamed sources and messages on Windows discussion forums, said Microsoft was considering those tweaks for an upcoming update, called "Windows Blue" by some and "Windows 8.1" by others. The upgrade, the first of a planned faster development and release tempo, is allegedly slated for an October debut.
Warren pointed to evidence that Microsoft might allow boot-to-desktop with Windows 8.1. Foley added that the Redmond, Wash., developer was also pondering a return of the Windows Start button and associated menu.
Analysts welcomed the news, assuming it's accurate.
"I don't see this as a defeat but as a good thing," said Patrick Moorhead of Moor Insights & Strategy. "It's shows you're willing to make changes based on customer feedback."
The tweaks would be a concession for Microsoft. Publicly, the company has repeatedly maintained that its design decisions were correct and its executives have suggested that users would, in time, learn to live without a Start button and grow to appreciate the Start screen.
Today, Microsoft declined to comment on the reports.
But contrary to Microsoft's assertions that the dual user interfaces (UIs) in Windows 8 were "fast and fluid," customers have barraged the company's blogs and the Web in general for more than a year with complaints.
They were most upset about the disappearance of the iconic 17-year-old Start button and menu, but also griped that they weren't able to boot right to the "Classic" user interface (UI), or desktop, rather than first hitting the tile-style Start screen.
(Excerpt) Read more at computerworld.com ...
The customer is always right.
Windows 8 is proof that an operating system can become despondent and commit suicide.
One fact of life in software development, is that making people NEED to re-train on a new user interface is unacceptable unless the new interface produces (not promises to, but is actually shown to, on pilot tests) a DRAMATIC increase in productivity.
Windows 8 was Microsoft’s shot at bridging the aging world of the personal computer with the shinier new one of tablets and smartphones. But users have been balking, and at least one major market research firm has determined that, rather than give new PC sales a boost, Windows 8 is actually hurting them.
Now, Mary Jo Foley at ZDNet says Microsoft may be about to cry “Uncle!” Her sources tell her the company is considering allowing users to restore the Start button and boot directly to the classic desktop in an update to Windows 8 that’s code-named “Blue”:
Reports from a couple of different forums from this past weekend raised the possibility that Microsoft might be moving toward allowing users to skip booting into the Metro-Style Start menu and instead start their PCs in desktop mode. (Winbeta.org noted the thread about this on April 14.)
One of my sources confirmed this is now looking like the plan and added that Microsoft is also considering bringing back the Start button as an option with Windows Blue.
Of course, Microsoft’s official line is that Windows 8 is an improvement over the interface that millions of Windows users have employed for the past 17 years. The Start Screen is really designed for use with touchscreen computers and is clumsy on traditional PCs, which make up the bulk of both the installed base and new systems shipped. Touchscreen machines are more expensive, further hurting Win8 adoption.
Forcing use of the Start Screen was a risk for Microsoft. The company obviously feels its new interface is visionary and a big step forward in interface design. But radical change is hard for most people, and so far, Windows users are voting on Microsoft’s design decisions by staying far, far away.
If Microsoft restores the Start button and boot-to-desktop as options for Windows Blue which may be called Windows 8.1 it will become a much more attractive operating system for consumers who want a more traditional experience. It will also appeal to corporations, who loathe the idea of training their employees on something radically different. Microsoft may have to swallow some pride, but it will gain in market share and revenue as a result.
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well after using Windows 8 for a few months now ,I have discovered something amazing , YOU DON”T NEED START BUTTON
seems like something was designed for engineers and not people.
it is similar to tech reviewers in general. They go gaga over some new inovative device without thinking about the practicality of use to the end consumer.
Sony generally stinks at this because they never support downward compatability or go all propritary with their plugs and chips.
I noticed that too. And booting to desktop is no big deal, but they should make it easier than using the task scheduler.
there are not enough big format touch screens or touch screen desks to make a desk touch system anything but clunky.
now if they sold it as getting rid of arm flab/flap at your desk, women would buy it at twice the price...
I enjoy the tiles on my windows phone. But not so much on the desktop. Although I’m getting used to it. It does get a bit messy. It’s like having all kinds of shortcuts and saved files on a traditional desktop - so you need to strategize how to set up apps/folders/shortcuts/etc to avoid clutter.
I manage servers using Win 2008 Server so I still have an affinity for the start menu and tradition going back to Win NT and 95.
You segregate them in their idyllic lives on a MS campus in Seattle or wherever liberal illusory city where all reason, sovereign loyalty or common sense is eradicated in lieu of feel-good bullshit. You further force them to produce improvements in something that doesn't need to be improved - at least that of a few 'improvements' ago. Then you wonder why the business public doesn't like your new age, Facebook ripoff, social connection? The only good thing Bill Gates did was to rip off the company that developed DOS and possibly when he ripped off Apple (Windows) who stole it from Xerox....
One would think that, after 30 years of doing various stupid things, software companies would quit making changes that users do not request and quit removing things users do use.
Redesign for the sake of redesign or programmers needing something to do has ruined many software products. No wonder so many software products and companies from the 80s no longer exist.
Agreed. I’ve seen too many products change their interface promising increases in productivity, but it only helps those who are just learning the product. Long time users are frustrated because it isn’t in the same location. Recent MS Office products have been the biggest offenders.
Microsoft has lost track of its customer base. It is kinda like the Tucker car company without competition. It is not surprising though the way they are indoctrinating kids in school. Liberals believe in my way or the highway. We will show you what is “right” and you will do it. I think windows 8 is a foreshadow of what will happen in politics, landslide in 2016!
As a business owner the first thing I want my employees to see is Business stuff - Not facebook, social networking crap, and all that. I also don’t want to go through the hassle of having to modify each desktop so the proper tiles are in the proper place and contain WORK RELATED stuff!
I just don’t have the time and should not have to take the time.
We bought Windows 8 early and installed it on one computer. Tried it for a while, then reverted to Windows 7 so the employee could get some work done.
It is geared toward the social, cloud based crap that no business that makes money uses. Most businesses use Microsoft Office software, or other software dedicated to their business.
It was a dumb move on Microsoft’s side to try to force everyone into that touch screen, metro interface by putting all the “cool” stuff in front - I don’t pay my employees to spend all their time on “cool” stuff - I pay them to help me make money - they know it and I know it.
Evidently Microsoft forgot that most of the small businesses that keep buying their products have that same philosophy...
It's not a matter of learning something new or different. Windows 8 is cumbersome to use if you don't have a touchscreen computer. That's my complaint against it.
No, sometimes you just need to get the job done, and relearning something just messes with your productivity. Give me the option to do it the old way and the new.
If software companies built cars, we would all have to relearn how to drive every 3 years...
tiles on the desk would work if the computer was the “blotter” of the desk ala science fiction.
most people do not want a 20+ inch monitot in their face.
(BTW does everyone have their no google glasses sign up? Google glasses should be outlawed in any shape or form while driving, walking, in public businesses, medical facilities, ESPECIALLY medical facilities per hippa and privacy in general)
There is NO way a lot of computer stuff I do can be done on a touch screen. It would be cumbersome and definitely non-productive.
Touch screens might be okay to check email and look for a restaurant in a browser, but they do no lend themselves to real computer work.
My desktop monitor is 30-36 inchs away from my chair. My keyboard and trackball are at arms length. For me to even consider a touch screen, it would have to be closer to my chair than my keyboard is now. That just doesn’t cut it.
I would have the same problem. Of course, I may be more productive with the cool 3-D interface Tony Stark had in “Iron Man”, but I don’t hold my breath for it...
“And once again... without government interference, the market wins!! “
And there indeed is Microsoft’s way out.
1. Microshaft gives lots of cash to the Obamadork.
2. The dork and his technologically clueless minions then decide that the collapse of the world’s worst software company should not be allowed ‘cuz “it’s too big”.
3. The dorks then pour trillions of taxpayer bucks into Microsoft - which will then go into the solar operated computer business (if you think they can’t design software, just wait ‘til you see how they handle real engineering)
4. Standard ending - Microsoft collapses in a Solara-like implosion whilst some set of congresscritters grow richer.
Microsoft been tone deaf for years. Not holding my breathe
I haven’t shut this computer down for months, I have about 40 or more documents of various types loaded to work on. I would never see a start screen, but need a start button.
Can’t put my finger on it but for some reason, Windows 8 reminds me of New Coke.
So what will the upgrade cost?
Probably no more than $150.00, if you already have Win 8.
If Windows 8 is going to sell more int he consumer market — PRICES HAVE TO COME DOWN.
That’s what I am hearing from most consumers.
If you are using 8 on a touch screen tablet, like I’ve been doing, the Metro UI is fine, but I think it would be hard to use with a mouse on a laptop/desktop.
Shouldn’t ever have been an issue - it’s a computer, you can do things like change its appearance. It isn’t supposed to be an exercise in social engineering.
Win 7 to Win 8 was only $29 for the first 90 days of release.
No start button? No wonder it’s a bust. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. BRING BACK WINDOWS 98!!!
“- - — people NEED to re-train on a new user interface is unacceptable - - - -”
I liken this to perpetually changing how we operate a car, for instance one year the brake pedal is on the floor next to the accelerator, the next year the brake is a lever on the visor, the following year it’s a button in the glove box - with all the other controls being changed in a similar manner. What I said here sounds absurd because no one would stand for it.
Yet it happens frequently with software.
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