• January 17, 2021

Microsoft, it is time to kill the Start Menu

 Microsoft, it is time to kill the Start Menu

Why do we still need the Start Menu? What is its purpose today in Windows 10? We will examine how users use their Windows PC’s and the Start Menu below.

What is the Start Menu for?

In the image above you can see the Start Menu has been neatly arranged into a grid of small tiles, which are summoned when you hit either the Windows key with your finger or tap the Windows key on the keyboard. Why are your Apps siloed into a into a separate apps list anyway?

The Start Menu is a visual metaphor for tucking your files neatly away into you desk and leaving you desktop tidy.

Right now there are 7 ways you can find and launch an App in Windows 10.

  • Open Start (Tablet Mode) and hit the All Apps icon, then scroll through all your apps to find your App.
  • Open Start (Standard, with App list visible) then scroll through all your apps to find your App.
  • Tap on the Windows button and start typing to search for your App.
  • Tap on the Search icon on the taskbar and begin typing to search for your App.
  • Open File Explorer and navigate to the App’s location somewhere in the file system to find your App.
  • Open File Explorer and enter the name of your App in the search field to find your App.
  • When installing a new App from the web like an .exe file, the App creates a shortcut on your desktop that you can launch your App from.

Yes, that is a lot of different ways to do the same thing, but could Microsoft simplify it? Sure, Microsoft just needs to see the merit in killing the Start Menu off. Below we will lay out some reasons to do so.

Why should Microsoft Kill off the Start Menu?

  • Hardly anyone uses it, fewer people customize it, according to Microsoft.
  • The Apps list and Start Menu are duplicating efforts and confusing users.
  • Windows 10X uses one place where apps live, tap the Windows icon and you are presented with your top apps, then tap ‘See All’ to see the entire apps list, while this method is simpler, it still requires more than one tap to see all your apps.

What is the alternative approach?

Windows had an app launcher even before the modern start menu. When you installed a new app it would place an icon on your desktop that you could click to launch an app. We even still have a great way to hide all of those icons, the ‘Show/Hide Desktop’ button on the right edge of the taskbar.

I know what you are thinking, but those arrows look hideous. Well in this alternative approach all of your Apps would be displayed on you desktop (without the arrows of course).

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Won’t that looks messy you say, yes it would. The solution would be to utilize the ‘Show/Hide Desktop’ function in the new Windows button.

When you have a Browser window open just hit the new Windows button to see your Apps, if you want to see the desktop then tap the new Windows button again. This would hide your apps till you hit the new Windows button again.

Whatever you left it as is what it would show you the next time you hit the new Windows button. So if you have a blank desktop and want to launch an app > just tap the new Windows button and your apps will appear > launch your app > use your app > then hit the new Windows button and it will remember what it showed last (which was your apps) > hit it again then you will see you bare desktop. In practice this would be very simple.

By Platform De.Central

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