Tuesday October 04, 2011

Win 8 Ditching Start Menu for a Start Screen

Microsoft is moving away from the Start Menu for Windows 8 in favor of a Start Screen. According to the design team, the start menu is now old and outdated so they are moving on. Good idea? Bad idea?

As we wrote about in our post on evolving the Start menu, after studying real world usage of the Start menu through a variety of techniques, we realized that it was serving mainly as the launcher for programs you rarely use. As more and more launching takes place from the task bar, the Start menu looks like a lot of user interface for programs you don't use very frequently. And the Start menu is not well-optimized for this purpose. It affords limited customization, provides virtually no useful information, and offers only a small space for search results.