The Start Button appears to be making its way back to Windows with the oncoming release of Windows "Threshold," also tipped to be called Windows 9. This system has not been confirmed by Microsoft, nor has it been officially suggested as removing the Metro UI revealed in Windows 8 at all - instead, it’s likely to be a slightly more incremental update than Windows 8 was in the first place.
Word from Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet suggests Microsoft insiders are ready to speak about Threshold. They’ve suggested that the next version of Windows has been mentioned in internal Microsoft emails as a system that’ll bring all devices together - just as Windows 8 was meant to.
It’s been suggested by these same sources that Windows 9 will look and act different depending on the device, forming differently depending on what size screen it’s working with. You’ll find that a smaller display will axe the desktop, while a larger display will launch the desktop first - and a touchscreen will bring Touch UI (Metro) first, just as Windows 8 does.
Start Menu Rebirth
Since Windows 8 launched, users have asked when the Start Menu would return. Now it’s said that a "Mini Start Menu" will be released with Threshold. This update will come after Windows 8.1 Update 2, which Foley says will likely appear before August Patch Tuesday on August 12th.
This Mini Start Menu is expected to have customizability, unlike past versions of the regular Start Menu. This menu would have the ability to sort apps by Metro/Non-metro, and would have the ability to take out Metro apps altogether, showing only apps ready for the desktop inside their own windows.
We gladly welcome our new Mini Start Menu overlord, welcome it with open arms. Now it’s just a matter of when, far more than if.