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Start Button is back for Windows 8.1, but may act differently

It’s been rumoured for months that the iconic Start Button would be returning when Windows 8.1 launches this summer and now a leaked screenshot seems to have proved it beyond any doubt.

The button, which had been a popular navigation tool within Windows until it was controversially axed by the new ‘re-imagined’ OS has been missed by punters who’ve upgraded.

Windows blogger Paul Thurrott has shown off a screen grab obtained from the most recent preview built with the Star Button back in its rightful place at the bottom left corner of the screen.

However, the story doesn’t end there.

ZDnet’s Well-connected Microsoft reporter Mary Jo Foley reckons although the look and location of the button will be familiar, the functionality may not be.

Sources tell her that hitting the new Star Button will bring up an ‘All Apps’ screen with icons and no tiles.

Whether this replaces the conventional tabbed interface that allowed users to easily wade through programs and documents, or accompanies it remains to be seen

The report also intimated that the Start Button won’t always be visible within Windows 8.1, when Metro apps are in use, but rather will appear when users mouse over the bottom left corner of the taskbar.

The speculation surrounding Windows 8.1 (previously known as Windows Blue) is likely to continue until the company details its update at the Build conference which commences on June 10.

Would the return of the Start Button make you more likely to jump on board with Windows 8? Let us know below.

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