Microsoft Released Windows 8.1: The Return of the Start Button


Home / Microsoft Released Windows 8.1: The Return of the Start Button

Windows 8 removed the classic Start button, causing an outcry among users – but now they’re putting it back. Image by
See-ming Lee 李思明 SML

Microsoft Windows 8: Released in October 2012, the tech community met the new version of the Windows operating system with mixed emotions. Some users loved it while others found it very difficult. However, most people raised one question:

Where’s the Start Button?

Microsoft opted to remove the Start Button for Windows 8, but system designers have called for a ‘Do Over.’ Windows 8.1 is now available for Beta Testing, and the Start button is back.

Windows 8 More Touch-Screen-Friendly

Microsoft initially removed the Start Button to make the new operating system touch-screen-friendly, replacing it with the start screen, where users could create blocks as shortcuts to their most commonly-used apps and pieces of software.

The problem for Microsoft is that the apps market for Windows isn’t as big as for Apple and Google. Many developers didn’t have a reason to use the apps system, and preferred the traditional layout – leaving users in a frustrating position. No Start Button, and not enough apps to take away the sting.

That does not mean that the start screen is never going to appear again – developers are still using the start screen, and it will be there when the Windows app market builds enough to support the leap.

Windows 8.1: Test Version

At the moment, Windows 8.1 is only available as a test version for those who already have Windows 8 or Windows 7. The full operating system for the public will not be available until later in 2013. The test version is completely free for current Windows 7 or 8 users to download and test – and it’s a Beta test to make sure it offers everything users need.

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