Since the release of Windows 11 in November 2021, reception to the new Start menu has been mixed at best. The centered icons and the fewer features of the Start menu have frustrated some, and while feature updates from Microsoft have refined the Taskbar, users are still wanting more customization.
The recent 1.2 version of Start11 brings the ability to group multiple icons into one on the taskbar, alongside bringing drag and drop to the taskbar from today (March 17), instead of waiting for a future Windows 11 update, most likely Sun Valley 2.
The app is available as a free download for 30 days, after which you can buy a license for $4.99 / £5.99 / AU$ 5.99 for your PC.
Analysis: Take note, Microsoft
The impressive aspect of Start11 isn’t that you can use features that were removed in Windows 11. Rather, it’s how you can customize it to levels that Microsoft wouldn’t consider including.
From the color scheme of the Taskbar, to changing the design to better mimic the Start menus of Windows XP and Windows 8, Start11 offers that level of curation that Microsoft seemingly hasn’t thought of.
In our review of Windows 11 we noted that it was the first step of a reboot to Windows as a whole. We’re already seeing the results of this with Windows Media Player returning, and other apps that are finally seeing a design refresh.
But the Start menu is an iconic feature of Windows, ever since it debuted in Windows 95, so any change was bound to spark some debate between users. However, Start11 looks set to ease those concerns, regardless of what Microsoft may have planned for the Start menu in the future.
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