Not only will Microsoft return the Start Button to the taskbar in its forthcoming update to Windows 8, Windows 8.1, the company will also let users boot directly into the Desktop interface.
The changes may be seen in the preview version of Windows 8.1 next month at Microsoft’s BUILD conference, according to All About Microsoft. They will also include other features and UI tweaks that are designed to address the concerns of users that don’t enjoy Windows 8’s Metro designed interface.
These changes will reportedly include a way to allow users to forego the Live Tiles in today’s Start Screen for a view that only displays the currently installed applications on the machine whenever they navigate to the Start Screen.
While Microsoft will restore the Start Button in the desktop to its previous place in Windows 7, users will possibly, only see this button based on how they use the computer, according to WinSuperSite (an outlet that has been mostly accurate in the past). It believes that the Start button will only appear in the desktop if a user clicks it. If the user chooses to use the physical Windows key on their device, the software button will disappear. Users will also be able to manually turn the button on and off.
Both sites also believe the Windows 8.1 will allow users to specify the same background for the Desktop environment and Start Menu, with the thought process being that users found the current situation of choosing one for each to be too “jarring.” It’s more likely that users were more annoyed by the fact that they could only choose between a somewhat stale slate of patterns and colors for the Start Screen.
While Microsoft has already announced that it will make Windows 8.1 available free to users through the Windows Store and that users can expect a preview version of the operating system at its BUILD conference in late June, it has yet to officially detail what changes are coming in the update.
Leaks have indicated that smaller Live Tiles and support for smaller tablets may be in the cards for the final release to consumers later this year.