There have been a lot of rumors flying around about Microsoft re-instating the famous Start button in Windows 8.1. It appears that those rumors are true. Paul Thurott has obtained a screenshot from Windows 8.1 that clearly shows a newly designed, and ever-present, Windows 8 Start button right at home in the task bar.
The new Start button loses the shiny orb from Windows 7 and instead uses a flat Windows logo. The real story here is the functionality of the Start button. Microsoft may have added it back, but they did not add the old functionality back. Clicking the new Start button in Windows 8 will simply bring you to the Start screen. The Start menu is gone, and it’s not coming back.
It’s really nice to see that Microsoft is willing to meet users half way. A lot of users complained about the missing Start button and Start menu. This should at least give those users an easier way to access the Start screen. To further help those that complained about the new Start screen there will also be a “Boot to desktop” option in Windows 8.1.