As Windows 9 slowly makes its way towards reveal, Microsoft is still working the kinks out of Windows 8.1. The latest fix? A potentially improved merge of Metro apps with the regular Desktop.
Russian leaker WZor published some new screens possibly showing the upcoming Windows 8.1 Update 1. The grabs reveal Metro apps pinned to the taskbar, plus a new option to "Show Store apps on the taskbar."
These Desktop additions aren’t earth-shattering, but they do mark a shift to finally mash together the duality of Windows 8.1 and future Microsoft operating systems.
Currently users have to pane back over to the tiled Start Menus to access apps like Calendar or Microsoft Word. Meanwhile, there’s no way to simply create a desktop shortcut to Metro apps.
Bringing back Windows to Windows
Bringing more apps to the taskbar isn’t the first desktop oriented transition we’ve seen Microsoft make to Metro.
Back in December we reported the Start Menu would return with Windows 9 to show the old program list instead of the tiled look in 8.1. Codenamed Threshold, the new OS is also slated to allow users to display Metro apps in a windowed mode instead of always being full-screen.
As it stands Windows 8.1 is two-part operating system. There’s Desktop mode, which looks like good old Windows 7, and there’s Modern mode to display full screen, touch-friendly apps off of the Windows Store.
We’re drawing ever closer to Microsoft Build 2014, where Windows 9 will likely be revealed. So far it looks like this odd-numbered OS is a keeper, so stay tuned as we draw closer to the dev conference.
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