Windows ‘Threshold' may not be a spring chicken after all

Windows “Threshold” is starting to take shape but one detail that seems to be unknown, is when it will ship. We had previously heard that it was looking like a release in 2015 but now a new report suggests that it will arrive in 2014.

Here’s the deal, we obviously know Microsoft is working on the next update to Windows, in fact, they are probably working on several updates at once, but the next update to be released will be ‘Threshold’ and it could be called Windows 8.2. According to Paul Thurott, it is coming in 2014 but previously Mary Jo Foley said that it would arrive in 2015.

Both sources have solid track records on this type of thing so it’s tough to gauge when the OS will be released. Despite that, the feature set will reportedly include a return of the Start menu and allow for windowed Modern apps on the desktop.

To try and make some sense of the two separate time windows, let’s take a look at what is currently happening or has happened.

Windows ‘Blue’ is a wave of updates that appears to be similar to ‘Threshold’. At this time, Windows has received its ‘Blue’ update, but Windows Phone has not. The ‘Blue’ update for Windows Phone is expected to arrive in the spring of 2014. So, what might happen is that Microsoft releases each platform on a yearly basis under the ‘Threshold’ name. So, this would mean Windows gets its ‘Threshold’ update in the fall of 2014 and Windows Phone gets in the spring of 2015.

If true, this could be why sources around the ‘Threshold’ leaks are not 100% aligned as they could be taking about separate Windows products but the same update codename.

If the features are starting to leak out now, it means that they are modestly far along with the planning, if not development cycle. Think about it, if two separate sources are now leaking information, the updates have propagated to a certain level of management within the company, which is why we are suddenly seeing a wave of leaks.

Of course, this all is based on the idea that Microsoft will release major updates to all of its core products on a yearly basis. They previously said ‘rapid release’ but that doesn’t always mean an annual update.

Source: Paul Thurott

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With Windows 8.1 when you're on the Desktop, just press Win+S to get the search panel! In Windows 8.1 you are able to search for applications, files and Windows settings without leaving the Desktop.
Win+S
Win+F
Win+W


1990 - GUI is for idiots - Who cares if you can run multiple programs
1992 - File Manager changes are horrible - Unified Drivers hurt the peripheral industry
1995 - Start Menu is horrible - File Explorer is horrible - Document folders are Stupid
1998 - Explorer updates are horrible - Browser integration hurts consumers
2001 - New Start Menu is horrible - UI is Fisher Price - Everyone is keeping Win98
2006 - New Start menu is horrible - Transparency looks childish
2007 - New Ribbon UI is horrible, no one will ever use it, MS lost the business world
2009 - Aero is still horrible - EVERYONE uses Basic/Classic
2012 - Start Screen is horrible - We miss the Start Menu - We miss the Transparency

2014 - The new (Any Changes) are horrible, EVERYONE hates it.

Exactly this. People are so freaking dumb and stubborn to try anything that changes their comfort zone, yet in 4-5 years no one will remember any of this and love the new windows. It just blows my mind (as I sell computers on a daily basis) how many people just go "no it's different, I don't want anything to do with it" Well folks, I'll tell you what, go saddle up on your horses and ride around town then because driving cars is different then how we did things over 150 years ago.

the paranoia is just setting in at redmond... the epiphany of including the menu will make the after burners in their asses burn at full blast till the menu is delivered asap and the cross lifted from their chests of having taken the bottle out of the babys mouth and having left it to die!

So this will be my third time face palming at the news discussion and even reviews which dont mention the reams of new and improved features the new version of windows gets and instead repeats discussion of the ui Ad nauseam.

This is getting very very old

TPreston - the real reason is because the anti-ModernUI crowd really doesn't want Windows (of any sort) on tablets/slates/etc to be successful.

What Dot, myself, and others have pointed out (incessantly) is that ModernUI is a generalization UX - it's neutral. (It's not biased any sort of way - not toward pointing devices, touch, or even just the keyboard - it can support them all, either entirely or mixed.) That's not true of the 9x-7 Start menu - it is explicitly biased toward pointing devices - in fact, it's exceedingly difficult to use with even Accessibility Features in Windows 7 - which is supposed to make the Start menu ADA-accessible, such as for those that cannot use a standard pointing device. The StartScreen, however, is not as hobbled when dealing with the ADA as the Start menu is - primarily due to its neutrality.

Hating the StartScreen is as sensible as hating ramps as opposed to stairs - do you actually PREFER stairs to a ramp?

PGHammer said

Hating the StartScreen is as sensible as hating ramps as opposed to stairs
You can't be serious.

A better example in this case would be : You prefer to use the escalator, I prefer to use the elevator.

Both do the same job - get you to the same destination, but vary in how they are used.

End result? We both get to where we need to be, and we're happy with the choice we were able to make.

All they have to do is give users an option of using the Classic Start Menu vs Modern Start Screen where Classic Start Menu = The one in Windows 7 (Not the original classic).

I don't think users had problems with the Modern Start Screen but rather the lack of choice. When they redesigned the current start menu you see in Windows 7, people who were married to the classic one could still go back and use it. Just give people a choice and eventually they will adopt.

If Microsoft's Start Menu returns there will be a MASSIVE ship jumping from all these users that have adopted one of these 3rd party start menu programs. Where do you think that will leave all those 3rd party Start Menu developers with a constantly dwindling user base?

I am using Start-8 and would be instantly switching to Microsoft's start menu if it returned.

Night Prowler said,
If Microsoft's Start Menu returns there will be a MASSIVE ship jumping from all these users that have adopted one of these 3rd party start menu programs. Where do you think that will leave all those 3rd party Start Menu developers with a constantly dwindling user base?

I am using Start-8 and would be instantly switching to Microsoft's start menu if it returned.

Those developers will probably create apps to add the start screen for all those people who see the start menu as a regression. I hope that the start menu is horribly crippled with no configuration options other than enabled or disabled and no Modern UI apps listed. I also hope that it is dropped for good in Windows 9!!

Agreed, there's probably going to still be a market for customisation.
Some people like the "classic" Start Menu style, so there's still that for those who want it.

AR556 said,
LOL, if the Start Menu does return, we'll be placing Dot Matrix on suicide watch.

No, just like me he'll be using Start Screen is back instead!!

neo158 said,

No, just like me he'll be using Start Screen is back instead!!

Perhaps DenialisForever would be the better fit. j/k

Paul Thurrott on the iPad 2010: "Anyone who believes this thing is a game changer is a tool. I'm sorry, but that's just the way it is."

I just had too.

AWilliams87 said,
Paul Thurrott on the iPad 2010: "Anyone who believes this thing is a game changer is a tool. I'm sorry, but that's just the way it is."

I just had too.

What game did it change exactly? Great for the casual media consumer who does some email and plays candy crush. Sure there are some more powerful applications but they're rather niche. Doesn't really change anything in the grand scheme.

ROFLCOPTERS said,

What game did it change exactly? Great for the casual media consumer who does some email and plays candy crush. Sure there are some more powerful applications but they're rather niche. Doesn't really change anything in the grand scheme.


Paul Thurrott: "Is this thing even worth reviewing?...
It seems like a high priced, unnecessary trinket to me."

AWilliams87 said,
Paul Thurrott on the iPad 2010: "Anyone who believes this thing is a game changer is a tool. I'm sorry, but that's just the way it is."

I just had too.

Exactly, that's one reason not to trust anything Paul Thurrott says regarding updates to Windows.

neo158 said,

Exactly, that's one reason not to trust anything Paul Thurrott says regarding updates to Windows.


He actually has pretty good sources. It's just when he tries to add his own analysis where he falls short; very short.

AWilliams87 said,
He actually has pretty good sources. It's just when he tries to add his own analysis where he falls short; very short.

Then remind me again what tablet sells the most?

I'll leave it at that.

neo158 said,

Then remind me again what tablet sells the most?

The credibility of Thurrott's sources has what to do with his personal opinion of the iPad, specifically?

Hello,

neo158 said,

Then remind me again what tablet sells the most?

I'll leave it at that.


Android tablets. What did you mean by that?

AWilliams87 said,

Paul Thurrott: "Is this thing even worth reviewing?...
It seems like a high priced, unnecessary trinket to me."

That's his opinion. Regarding the "game changer" comment he was spot on in my view. It didn't change any game. It simply filled in a new niche. When I say new it wasn't actually new at all. The technology and software had simply got to a point where it was a viable proposition. It hasn't really changed how work is done in a lot of instances (it's more of a media consumption device any way) nor, realistically, can tablets ever completely replace your desktop or your phone. At best it'll compliment them.

ROFLCOPTERS said,

That's his opinion. Regarding the "game changer" comment he was spot on in my view. It didn't change any game. It simply filled in a new niche. When I say new it wasn't actually new at all. The technology and software had simply got to a point where it was a viable proposition. It hasn't really changed how work is done in a lot of instances (it's more of a media consumption device any way) nor, realistically, can tablets ever completely replace your desktop or your phone. At best it'll compliment them.


Well Paul thurrott disagrees with you. You should listen to him in podcasts now about the iPad being such a great device. The success of the iPhone and iPad is why the entire Microsoft organization was reorganized and why we see Windows 8 as it is today: to run on tablets as well as desktops. That would never of happened without their successes.

Steve Ballmer was wrong about the iPhone, too. I guess (in the odd reality some of you live in) that means his credibility regarding what goes on inside Microsoft is completely unreliable.

AWilliams87 said,

Well Paul thurrott disagrees with you. You should listen to him in podcasts now about the iPad being such a great device. The success of the iPhone and iPad is why the entire Microsoft organization was reorganized and why we see Windows 8 as it is today: to run on tablets as well as desktops. That would never of happened without their successes.

No doubt it's a quality device. What he says now isn't really the point though. You started off with the "game changer" comment. Then, as now, it's a valid opinion. If he's decided in retrospect that it was a game changer then that's fine. He'd just be wrong instead of right.

AWilliams87 said,

He actually has pretty good sources. It's just when he tries to add his own analysis where he falls short; very short.

This. He backpedaled on RT in just one year. Spring 2013 he was berating Surface RT and Windows RT as nothing more than a tool Microsoft used to get Intel to compete better in the mobile space.

While that mission was accomplished, there are other gains to be had from Windows RT. Namely, that it is a pure system with no legacy Win32 support and a closed system far less susceptible to traditional Windows malware. Then, magically as Surface 2 reached the market this fall, Paul changed his tune and began calling Windows RT "the future of Windows."

His sources are generally very good. But he often forgets that his audience is more than just computer illiterate monkeys. He needs to realize that a dumb iPad-like device that can run Windows is not the "end-all be-all" of consumer electronics, but it does serve a role. Just as a portable, powerful Surface Pro 2 does. There is no one device for everyone. Otherwise, we too, would be satisfied with the iPad.

Both are right. 2014 will see the release to MSDN tech net etc. 2015 it will be what MSFT calls GA or general availability meaning it will ship with new pcs and you could download it from the windows store if you're not an elite msdn/TechNet subscriber.

Arceles said,
I'm going to laugh about you if it does ^^

Think about it. The start menu was never in Windows 8 past the developer alpha. There WAS, however, another smaller menu. If anything that is the start menu rumored to be coming back.

Dot Matrix said,

Think about it. The start menu was never in Windows 8 past the developer alpha. There WAS, however, another smaller menu. If anything that is the start menu rumored to be coming back.

You'll have to refresh my memory. Screenshot? Or do you mean the right-click menu that's still there in RTM?

I do, however, think that any "return" of the Start menu would probably be a rewritten/modernized menu rather than re-adding legacy code.

Dot Matrix said,

Think about it. The start menu was never in Windows 8 past the developer alpha. There WAS, however, another smaller menu. If anything that is the start menu rumored to be coming back.

In any case, your crusade against it, it's finally over and I'm very sure that I'm not the only one celebrating here.

Arceles said,
In any case, your crusade against it, it's finally over and I'm very sure that I'm not the only one celebrating here.

Your comment is the same thing everyone else has already put thinking that the Start Menu coming back is a done deal, it's not and none of us, including you, know what it will look like so how about we all wait and see!!

Josh the Nerd said,
Ah, an early implementation of the charms. "Start" is one of the options rather than the name of the menu.

Right, but it was built for the OS. I seriously doubt you will see the return of the Windows XP start menu. It wasn't built for Windows 8's features.

allow for windowed Modern apps on the desktop.

I don't care about the start menu, but the WinRT api should have been able to target both UI to begin with. Even on my Surface RT there are plenty of times I prefer to work in the desktop vs modern UI. It'd become even more important as more and more people start using these as their primary devices and dock them.

Spicoli said,
Okay, everyone can now begin repeating the same bickering about the start button...

You just had to say it didn't you?

For the first time since testing Windows 8 in early 2012, I have to say I'm looking forward to this update. The Start Menu is a very powerful thing.

JHBrown said,
For the first time since testing Windows 8 in early 2012, I have to say I'm looking forward to this update. The Start Menu is a very powerful thing.

I may actually run a leaked build this time around. Win8/8.1 were the first versions of Windows since Chicago (AKA Win95) that I didn't run leaked builds.

JHBrown said,
For the first time since testing Windows 8 in early 2012, I have to say I'm looking forward to this update. The Start Menu is a very powerful thing

... on a non-touch device. On a 10 or 8-inch tablet I'd barf if I was forced to use the Start Menu.

The start screen is a very powerful thing. It works beautifully once you customize it to your use and learn how to use it. I don't miss the start menu at all.

pmbAustin said,
The start screen is a very powerful thing. It works beautifully once you customize it to your use and learn how to use it. I don't miss the start menu at all.

Maybe so, but choice is great for the consumer.

I've never missed the Start menu - and i work on a desktop with no touch support (keyboard and mouse, both USB and wireless). Where the StartScreen saves me grief and aggro is when my mouse sticks or jams, which it WILL do in some low-battery conditions. How does it save me aggro? Because the StartScreen is still usable when the mouse is not - that can't be said for the Start menu. (You can tab among tiles on the StartScreen from your keyboard - then use the spacebar OR the Enter key to select the highlighted tile. No pointing device needed - and it works in Windows 8/Server 2012 or later.)

PGHammer said,
Because the StartScreen is still usable when the mouse is not - that can't be said for the Start menu. (You can tab among tiles on the StartScreen from your keyboard - then use the spacebar OR the Enter key to select the highlighted tile. No pointing device needed - and it works in Windows 8/Server 2012 or later.)

Are you honestly claiming the start menu is completely unusable without a mouse, both the classic version and especially the one in Vista/7?

No, no, NO Brad, read the reports correctly. There will be 2 updates in the next 1.5 years:

Spring 2014 - Windows Phone 8.1 will release AND there will be some form of update to Windows 8.1, which probably won't be named 8.2 but something else. This update intends to bring both WP and W8.1 closer together at an API level (they're at %33 parity right now, this update should bring them to %70)

Spring 2015 - Big update to Windows 8.1, probably called 8.2, AKA "Threshold". This is the one that supposedly will bring %100 parity or at least come as close as possible to Windows Phone and Windows. WP is merging with RT creating a unique version of ARM Windows and we'll also have the x86 version. The goal is for all to share the kernel (they already do), APIs and as many elements as possible (security, network stack, etc) so devs can write apps once, run anywhere while adapting the UI.

C'mon, I expect better from Neowin.

Edited by Xabier Granja, Dec 10 2013, 6:45pm :

I think you are not understanding.

Blue - Windows Fall, Phone Spring
Threshold - Windows Fall, Phone Spring.

I know there is Windows 8.1 Update 1 coming this Spring, I did not mention on purpose to avoid this simple confusion.

bdsams said,
I think you are not understanding.

Blue - Windows Fall, Phone Spring
Threshold - Windows Fall, Phone Spring.

I know there is Windows 8.1 Update 1 coming this Spring, I did not mention on purpose to avoid this simple confusion.

The problem I see is that the source article doesn't give a release date for Threshold.

Unless I'm grossly misunderstanding you, it seems that the latest news from Thurrott and MJF say otherwise: threshold is coming for both Windows and WP in Spring 2015. No credible source has claimed Threshold release in the Fall.

MS is shifting to Spring releases, which will happen in waves. WP shifted to a 18month cadence for wp8.1 to adapt to this new spring release window and because they probably needed time to converge the APIs.

Xabier Granja said,
Unless I'm grossly misunderstanding you, it seems that the latest news from Thurrott and MJF say otherwise: threshold is coming for both Windows and WP in Spring 2015.

Until they let Windows Phone slip and the update moves back to Q3 2015, then Q1 2016... If Windows Phone development slows any more, they may actually begin regressing backwards.

My important go-to apps are pinned to my task bar. I never used the start menu actually and with me many, many others have the same experience. Take the relative small amount of complaining users in the minute corner of the web where techblogs live out of the equation and the general public could not care less as they have all their stuff on the desktop anyway, just like they had it with '98 and XP.

It could be that 2014 is the target date, but given that it's software development, they're going to leak 2015 incase the software development cycle is a typical development cycle

Gah, I seriously hope the Start Menu isn't coming back. No one needs to hear these debates anymore when the darn thing gets cut yet again another day.

Dot Matrix said,
Gah, I seriously hope the Start Menu isn't coming back. No one needs to hear these debates anymore when the darn thing gets cut yet again another day.
If they just make it an option that's fine with me. Hell, if they just have quick settings for how you like your OS that works for me. Mouse/Keybaord Centric / Touch Centric or "Customize" that would be fantastic.

Dot Matrix said,
Gah, I seriously hope the Start Menu isn't coming back. No one needs to hear these debates anymore when the darn thing gets cut yet again another day.

Keep the Start Screen enabled by default and have an option to revert to Start Menu. This will make it so the people use the Start Screen by default but those who do not want to mess with it at that time can revert back to the Start Menu. How they did it on the previous versions of Windows and phased out the old menu over time.

Cant just look at it at your point of view. It really will not affect you if it happens. Continue to use the SS and ignore the SM option. But I do think it will help the adoption of Win8 and in the long run, MS' goal.

Good. Sooner the better. Once they get the start menu back, they will have a lot more happier end users. Not everyone thinks the start screen is the best thing since sliced bread.

Edited by warwagon, Dec 10 2013, 6:49pm :

However, those that don't are actively seeking a return to a pointing-device-centric UI/UX. (Notice that I did NOT say a touch-centric UI or UX - despite comments that say that, even most critics admit that ModernUI is neither one.)

Those same folks willingly admit that the Start menu is very much pointing-device-centric - and that's what they want.

@warwagon -
Agreed. I will find it hilarious if this comes to be true (adding the start menu back) and the adoption rate for 8.2 completely blows the current 8.0/.1 rate out of the water. Then those metro lovers can eat their own words.

well we can make a deal: if this'll be the case i eat my own words AND have empyric evidence that a large chunk of tech-using society either has aspergers syndrome or just plain stupid

PGHammer said,
[]...]even most critics admit that ModernUI is neither one.)

That's exactly the problem. It's some demented hybrid.

warwagon said,
Good. Sooner the better. Once they get the start menu back, they will have a lot more happier end users. Not everyone thinks the start screen is the best thing since sliced bread.

I'm still waiting for the removal the GUI and get back to the command line interface, as we ALL KNOW it is the best. At the very least, give us back Program Manager and File Manager.* /s

*Same idiotic thinking and comments we all saw in 1995.

It is amazing that a tiny percentage of users seem to think they know what is best, which becomes even more absurd when it becomes obvious they don't understand the model behind the UI evolutions.


Let's examine the lineage of other 'forward' thinkers like yourself...

1990 - GUI is for idiots - Who cares if you can run multiple programs
1992 - File Manager changes are horrible - Unified Drivers hurt the peripheral industry
1995 - Start Menu is horrible - File Explorer is horrible - Document folders are Stupid
1998 - Explorer updates are horrible - Browser integration hurts consumers
2001 - New Start Menu is horrible - UI is Fisher Price - Everyone is keeping Win98
2006 - New Start menu is horrible - Transparency looks childish
2007 - New Ribbon UI is horrible, no one will ever use it, MS lost the business world
2009 - Aero is still horrible - EVERYONE uses Basic/Classic
2012 - Start Screen is horrible - We miss the Start Menu - We miss the Transparency

2014 - The new (Any Changes) are horrible, EVERYONE hates it.

...and kicking and screaming, Microsoft was able to bring users into the newer generation of interface designs and usability, despite all the 'EXPERTS' that claimed they knew better.

**2000 - WinME did suck, the monolithic kernel & FAT couldn't handle the new features

If, after a years of defending Windows 8, the only thing you have left is combative remarks about "you just hate all change command line blah blah blah" then its no wonder why you guys lost and why Windows 8 was a catastrophic failure.

MikeChipshop said,

Strangely enough this works both ways.

Yes but evangelists of a certain persuasion have entrenched themselves in an "options are bad, use the Start Screen and like it or GTFO" position for too long for anyone to fall for their backpedaling now.

Most people who hate the start screen have made no effort to customize it, or to learn to use it, or Windows 8 in general... or tried it in Windows 8.1 (and the All Apps screen improvements and boot-to-desktop options and enhancements).

pmbAustin said,
Most people who hate the start screen have made no effort to customize it, or to learn to use it, or Windows 8 in general... or tried it in Windows 8.1 (and the All Apps screen improvements and boot-to-desktop options and enhancements).

True or false, when you have an application open on your desktop and click the start button or the windows key, what you were working on gets completely covered up.

warwagon said,

True or false, when you have an application open on your desktop and click the start button or the windows key, what you were working on gets completely covered up.

True or false. You're looking at the damn menu not the damn work?

MikeChipshop said,

True or false. You're looking at the damn menu not the damn work?

True or false. Is there something called peripheral vision?

Lord Method Man said,
...

If, after a years of attacking Windows 8 and its users, the only thing you have left is combative remarks and comments about "Windows 8 was a catastrophic failure blah blah blah" then its no wonder why you guys get pushback when you try to force me and others to stop using Metro.

MikeChipshop said,

True or false. You're looking at the damn menu not the damn work?

Win Key -> type name of program I need to open -> Enter

Eyes never leave the project I'm currently working on, unless I was using Windows 8, which I thankfully no longer am.

Setnom said,

True or false. Is there something called peripheral vision?

You continue your work through peripheral do you? Don;t give me that BS. Same goes for the comment above. Start Key > Type > Return takes milliseconds, milliseconds you're not doing any thing else whether you're using start menu or start screen. You people just need to find something to whine about, which in this case appears to be 'change'.

MikeChipshop said,

You continue your work through peripheral do you? Don;t give me that BS.

I do. You don't? Weird. Well, I guess it requires practice.

And not just for work. For example, if I'm running a video file on the lower right corner of the desktop, I can still continue to watch when using the start menu on the left. When using the start screen, I can't see the video using my peripheral vision, it gets covered.

Mobius Enigma said,

It is amazing that a tiny percentage of users seem to think they know what is best,

Exactly! If and when the Start Menu, something I am not interested and I do not plan to use, will be reintroduced what will happen is that all those zealots, who unilaterally decided that the Start Screen was a perfect solution and an alternative paradigm was useless, will happily continue to use the Start Screen, others who did not like it will, hopefully, embrace W8.X boosting sales of the OS.

warwagon said,

True or false, when you have an application open on your desktop and click the start button or the windows key, what you were working on gets completely covered up.

True or false: You can't interact with what you were working on whether it's the Start menu or the Start screen unless you close them.

Most of the things you mentioned were protested by a small minority, but were embraced by the majority and resulted in massive sales for MS.

Windows 8 and it's Metro interface was rejected by all but the most ardent MS supporters and the minimal sales and lack of market share presence show that.

warwagon said,

True or false, when you have an application open on your desktop and click the start button or the windows key, what you were working on gets completely covered up.

In Windows XP, Vista, 7, the Start Menu obscures part of the screen, and WHILE IT IS OPEN, you if you click on anything else, it disappears.

The illusion that it is not taking you away from your work, is only in your mind. Prior to Windows 8, it only ever existed in a popup state, away from your work.

Lord Method Man said,

Yes but evangelists of a certain persuasion have entrenched themselves in an "options are bad, use the Start Screen and like it or GTFO" position for too long for anyone to fall for their backpedaling now.

What's the difference with your opinion? You want Modern UI out apparently.

Lord Method Man said,

I want options. Nice try with the strawman though. 3/10

I agree. Options are good. Start8 + ModernMix is actually really nice, but ModernMix doesn't window everything. For people with large, high resolution screens, and especially multiple screens, being able to run Modern UI apps in a window makes the actually useful.

I mean, I'd like to know what person with a 2560 or 4k monitor (or two, or three) actually runs Weather, Explorer, or Skype full screen. Or, really, any program other than video playback or software with windows/panels inside it (like Photoshop or Visual Studio).

Lord Method Man said,

Win Key -> type name of program I need to open -> Enter

Eyes never leave the project I'm currently working on, unless I was using Windows 8, which I thankfully no longer am.

funny you would use that key sequence in Windows Vista or 7. The same works in Windows 8.

Win Key > type name of program I need to open > Enter

The only difference is they laid out the start menu on the entire screen for users to see all the applications.

Nothing like building a hierarchy menu for applications.

Google has trained us to search the internet for what we are looking for. Why do we insist on asking Microsoft build a structured menu for potentially hundreds of applications / shortcuts.

I know what we can do, ask Google to build a menu system for the internet on their start page.

Setnom said,

I do. You don't? Weird. Well, I guess it requires practice.

And not just for work. For example, if I'm running a video file on the lower right corner of the desktop, I can still continue to watch when using the start menu on the left. When using the start screen, I can't see the video using my peripheral vision, it gets covered.

How exactly are you watching a video on one side and looking at the start menu on the other side? Smells like a lie to me.

Personally I just hit Win+Q, a small panel opens on the right, not covering my work, and I type what I want and usually just hit return..
Options.

MikeChipshop said,

How exactly are you watching a video on one side and looking at the start menu on the other side? Smells like a lie to me.

I assure you, it's not. It's an ability people have to practice.

I perhaps have more experience using my peripheral vision than most because I use it often when observing some deep sky object, like a faint nebula or galaxy through a telescope. In astronomy, this technique is called "averted vision": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Averted_vision

trek said,
@warwagon -
Agreed. I will find it hilarious if this comes to be true (adding the start menu back) and the adoption rate for 8.2 completely blows the current 8.0/.1 rate out of the water. Then those metro lovers can eat their own words.

Just because a large group of people refuse to be dragged kicking and screaming into the future doesn't mean they are right. People are averse to change, whether they realize that it benefits them or not.