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How to use the Windows RT 8.1 Start menu

On September 15, Microsoft quietly began rolling out the third and last major update for its Windows RT operating system. As we have been expecting, Windows RT 8.1 Update 3 brings the new Start menu and a few other improvements to the now retired OS.

The update KB3033055 is available now through Windows Update for every Windows RT devices, which mainly will include Surface RT, Surface 2, and the Nokia Lumia 2520.

The new Start menu was designed to replace the Start screen and still be able to access all your Windows RT 8.1 apps.

The Windows RT Start menu looks similar, but it's not identical to the Start menu you will find on Windows 10. As you can see in the images, the menu looks more like the one in Windows 7.

If you look closely, you will notice that the Start menu actually looks pretty similar to the menu Microsoft showed off at the Build conference in 2014 when we were expecting to see the new Start menu follow the Windows 8.1 Update. It never happened and it looks identical to the Start menu design that appeared on early builds of Windows 10 Insider Preview.

There is a good reason Windows RT is getting this version of the Start menu. The Start menu we see today on Windows 10 was written on XAML and it uses new API's which are not found in Windows 8.

Let's see more details and how to set up the new menu:

Getting the new Start menu

Getting the new Start menu involves making sure you install update KB3033055. If you don't see the update, make sure to check the Optional update section, install the update, and you are good to go.

Enabling and disabling the Windows RT Start menu

Microsoft isn't replacing the Start screen by default, as such once you have installed Windows RT 8.1 Update 3:

  1. Right-click on the Taskbar and click Properties.
  2. Navigate to the Start menu tab.
  3. Make sure you check the option Use the Start menu instead of the Start screen. If you want to go back to the Start screen, you will need to reverse this step by clearing the Use the Start menu instead of the Start screen check box.
  4. Click OK to save the changes.
  5. Finally, you'll be prompted to sign out and sign back in to complete the process. Go ahead and sign out and in again to enable the Start menu.

Understanding the sections of the Start menu

Once you have disabled the Start screen, clicking the Start button will reveal the new Start menu. The new menu for Windows RT 8.1 includes six main sections:

Image credit Microsoft

Header (1): Here's where you'll see your profile picture and name, and you'll have access to the Power button options.

Pinned List (2): Like in Windows 7, this area is where you'll see all your pinned applications (traditional and modern apps) with Jump List support.

Most Frequently Used Applications lists (3): As you use applications, the once you use the most will be listed here.

All Apps (4): Similar to Windows 10, this button will get you access to all the applications installed in your system.

Search text box (5): While Windows RT 8.1 Update 3 doesn't bring Cortana to the operating system, you will get a traditional search box to look for files, folders, applications, and settings just like in Windows 7.

App grid (6): The App grid is your Windows 8 tiles section. In this area, you can easily pin Windows RT and supported traditional apps.

Managing apps on either side of the menu

Managing the Start menu on Windows RT is as easy and familiar like in Windows 7 or Windows 10:

To pin or unpin apps to the App grid:

  1. Find the app that you want to pin to the App grid in the "All apps" list, do a search, or select and app from the "Most Frequently Used" list.
  2. Press and hold (or right-click with your mouse) the apps and simply select Pin to Start.
  3. Unpinning is as easy, simply press and hold or right-click the app with the mouse, and select Unpin from Start.

To pin or unpin apps to the Pinned List:

  1. Find the app that you want to pin to the App grid in the "All apps" list, do a search, or select and app from the "Most Frequently Used" list.
  2. You can drag your apps directly to the Pinned List, or you can hold down the Shift key, press and hold (or right-click with your mouse), and select Pin to Start list.
  3. Unpinning is as easy, simply press and hold or right-click the app with the mouse from the Pinned List, and select Remove from this list.

App pinning to the "Most Frequently Used" list happens automatically as you use apps in Windows RT 8.1, but if there is ever app you don't want to see listed, simply press and hold, or right-click, the apps and select Remove from this list.

Remember that you're not upgrading to a new operating system, you're still running Windows RT 8.1. As such, the app tiles that you pin to the "App grid" also support different sizes, which means that you can press and hold a tile and choose one of the supported sizes (small, medium, wide, and large).

The Start menu included with Windows RT 8.1 Update 3 also allows you to rearrange apps on the App grid, Pinned List, and Most Frequently Used list. Simply find the app you want to relocate and drag it to the location you want. Also, you can drag apps between these areas.

Here're a few things worth noting

In case the apps you pin exceed the viewing area, the Start menu will provide a scroll bar to access all the apps. Also, any apps that are pinned to the Taskbar, Pinned List, or App grid won't appear in the Most Frequently Used list. Any apps you removed from this list will no longer appear.

As you know, Windows 8.x comes with two versions of Internet Explorer (desktop and modern). Now that Microsoft is changing how things work on Windows RT, it's important to know that depending from where you're launching the web browser you'll get a different version.

If you pin Internet Explorer to the Taskbar, Most Frequently Used list, or Pinned List, then the desktop version of the IE will open. Now, if you pinned the browser to the "App grid" and you click this tile, and then you will open the modern version of Internet Explorer.

Also, Windows Store apps that need to open a web page in the browser will use the modern version of Internet Explorer.

If you want to change this behavior, head over Control Panel, open Internet Options, navigate to the Programs tab, and change the settings under Opening Internet Explorer area.

Wrapping things up

Without a doubt, this is a welcome addition to the operating system and more now that Microsoft has announced that devices running Windows RT won't upgrade to Windows 10 or Windows 10 Mobile. The downside is that unlike Continuum for Windows 10, you're required to sign out and sign back in to switch between the Start menu and the Start screen, which could be a little problematic when removing the keyboard from the tablet. You'll be forced to close all running applications.

While the new Start menu doesn't have the same design as the menu in Windows 10, it's still a great design, and in many cases users will feel even more comfortable using this menu.

Do you own a Windows RT device? Are planning to switch to the new Start menu? Tell us what you think in the comments below.

Images credit @teroalhonen

Mauro Huculak is technical writer for His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.

  • Yes, but without Universal Apps, what is the point.
  • good point ... 
  • I don't get their thinking on this one. It brings nothing and must have wasted developers,tester time
  • I enabled the Start Menu, but for the Surface, the Start Screen makes more sense. This update is a joke, but at least it is an update. If Microsoft would spend the time to update to Windows 10 Mobile, there would be less complaints. All the Surface really needed were apps.
  • Exactly. A waste of time. I would've rather they used that effort to deliver Windows 10 mobile as an RT replacement, or at least bring a useful upgrade in backporting Cortana and Edge. They've done it with IE in past Windows versions. The worst part is that they quietly backported the ugly round profile picture in this update. Albeit a simple, but very unwelcome change.
    Oh yeah, and the new Start menu doesn't sync, just like in Windows 10. And if you turn the Start screen back on, most of your live tiles will be disabled and have to be individually turned back on. This whole update is incomplete and poorly tested. They shouldn't have even bothered. I've already been disenfranchised due to them dropping support for RT anyway. It's not like this update was going to reverse my plans to replace my Windows phone and tablet with an iPhone and Mac. Bye Microsoft!
  • While I agree this update is dumb, replacing your Windows devices with iPhone and iPad is equally dumb. IPhone, fine, no big deal. But ipad is a waste of time and money. Go with a surface 3 or surface pro 3 and carry one device instead of two.
  • My only problem with the iPad is that its a Surface RT class device selling for Surface Pro prices. If the iPad "Pro" was $450 like RT, I would consider it.
  • But modern software is written for the iPad and not available in the Windows Store. Who wants a desktop experience on a tablet? It defeats the purpose of a tablet, to be a simple and easy to use device that is very mobile. The Surface Pro is not simple or easy to use and apps just aren't available. You end up having to hunt and peck on websites instead of having a true touch interface. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I don't understand your logic.  The fact that you have the option to use the Surface3/Surface Pro as both a tablet and desktop is a good thing.  Why create the need for having to using multiple devices?  This takes be back to the pre-smartphone days when people didn't see the need for them.  They convinced themselves that carrying a separate phone, camera and mp3 player was the only way to go.
  • Point is, Surface Pro is bad as a tablet...and Surface 3 is bad as a laptop.
  • Yes and even the Surface RT / 2 and Lumia 2520 are bad as a tablet. They never had a lot of apps (Windows 10 doesn't have them yet either) and of course Windows Update on them is a joke. Just did a reset on a Surface RT 32GB recently. It was already on Windows RT 8.1 yet I had to install hundreds of Updates with multiple restarts. I bet Windows RT has more System Updates than Windows Store Apps. The free storage was slightly over 20GB before and less than 7GB after that update nightmare. Not because of Apps or other content, just caused by all those Updates 
  • it's the best choice he can make.either android or ios. if you have enough money to throw at Microsoft each time  they release and ditch a new device, fine, but not all of us are eager to do that!! WP7.8, Windows RT..rings a bell?? not all of us want to invest in devices from a company that does not respect it's users!!
  • Agree. People forget how expensive the Surface RT, for example, was on release. Here in Germany you had to pay 579€ for the 32GB version + 129€ for the Type Cover...
  • After WASTING $500 on the absolutely USELESS Surface rt you're suggesting that people give More money to this joke of a company? Moron.
  • Lol a Mac user.
  • Anyone that QQ's about a rounded profile avatar is wasting keystrokes and loses credability.
  • And RT is mainly for touch devices, so the old start screen makes perfect sense there. This is pointless.
  • It's a token offering, nothing more. Waste of effort. They could have put Windows 10 mobile and that at least would have been meaningful. This is dumb.
  • Glad it's optional. Absolutely no plans to use it.
  • Agreed. On a little touch screen, I prefer the start screen...even with the keyboard connected.
  • Yeah but it is pretty nice, took some tweaking and put the taskbar on the right side, my start menu is pretty much full screen has all my main apps. The surface RT feels much more productive now. Also I love how the apps can idle on the taskbar and when it is mouse connected I can use the minimize and close buttons on the top. When you get some time to be patient I think you should give it a go.
  • I wish Windows 10 had pin to start list.  That would be very useful.
  • Wow, this should be available for Windows 8.1 Pro also. At least as an option.
  • Makes much more sense there, should have done that to mitigate all the "hate" for Windows 8, but its all about the "saviour" Windows 10 now....
  • Start menu on WinRT looks not that promising rather than on Windows 10. But in terms in of productivity it will work just like on Windows 10. Nokia Lumia 2520 heard that name after a long time. Nokia Lumia sounds so perfect and top of the line. #MissingNokia
  • Nokia has not gone anywhere. While being network giant they are also making some inroads into the devices like with Ozo and designing mobile devices like N1. With phones/tablets its most likely going to be design & lisence operation for time being but new devices also made by Nokia like Ozo shows that good new stuff is brewing.
  • I would have been a bit less useless if there would be some sort of continuum. So when the keyboard is attached the desktop and start would show while on tablet mode the old 8.1 start would show automatically..
  • That's not Continuum. That tablet mode and Desktop mode. Completely different, actually. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I remembered that it was called continuum on the desktop but I might be wrong. I know that on the phone means a different thing..
  • You are right. Continuum is changing between desktop and startmenu on PC's and on phones it is the feature that allows you to hook it up to a screen and keyboard/mouse and have it work like a desktop.
  • I no longer own any RT devices, but this update is as underwhelming as Windows Phone 7.8 was and I wouldn't have used this did I still own one.
  • It's even worse than 7.8. They couldn't even give us anything useful like the Action Center or Edge. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Yeah I was sold on the whole "WP 8, W8, and  RT all have the same Kernel. The windows store is the future...blah blah blah." RT was killed off and majority of WP8 phones are looking to not get the W10 update.  
  • Same embarassing situation Microsoft got users to. Release "beta" products, use customers to test, then ditch them. And they expect someone to trust them??? Imagine a huge company to have bought Surface 2 RT devices, hundres of would that feel now when RT is dead?? can that company trust MS again?? on devices?? I do not think so...
  • Its a disaster...
  • Not sure how this is a "welcome addition", there are limited desktop apps that justify staying in desktop mode and having to logoff and back on again to switch means most people probably wont bother.
  • On RT there are no desktop apps at all save Office, so even more odd to add it to RT devices.
  • On the desktop side RT was shipped with Outllook in addition to Office Home. And of course all the little desktop apps like Paint, Calculator etc. plus of course Power Shell, Internet Explorer and File Explorer.
  • Actually it didn't ship with Outlook, just Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote. Outlook came in an update.
  • Do you own a windows rt device? Yes.
    Are you planning to switch to the new start menu?
    No, I'm planning to switch to iPad. At least they update their older devices.
  • This. Haha Microsoft just abandoned the few people who were actually keeping Windows on mobile alive. That market share will be dropping to 0.0% (from 3% or whatever minimal percentage) by next year.
  • Poorly worded comment. I'm not even exactly sure what you're trying to say. OP's comment was about RT, then you start talking about WM like the two are related.
  • Did you miss how many RT devices they sold? Or lack thereof...
  • 1,247,566?
  • The Surface RT/2 tablets were the best selling Windows 8 tablets.
  • Just because america can't implement wp, doesn't mean other countries are not striving! India,uk, europe does well
  • Well unless you have one of the first gen iPads/iPhones. So iPad isn't a safe bet too. Best bet is to get an Intel based Surface (Pro) if lifetime updates is your thing.
  • oo yes...with the "great" tablet experience from windows 10...sure why NOT!
  • A start menu for a RT device? Lol
    No sense
  • it makes more sense to get Windows Phone 10 (or is it 10 phone? 10 mobile? lack of sleep screws with my brain) to RT devices, but oh well...  
  • I have that update installed but I don't see the new Start menu?
  • It's optional, and turned off by default. The article tells you how to enable it.
  • Yeah, I couldn't see it till the tablet restarted a couple of times. The tablet was off for so long that it was behind on some updates. I guess some previous update had to be effective before this option started working.
  • Last ever time that Windows RT user guide will be featured on this site.  Shame.  RT is great it deserved better.  I'll probably try the new menu just to see what it's like for about 2 minutes then go back to the full screen start; exactly what I did with Windows 10 on my desktop PC.
  • Do not need this shit on winrt. Rather then invent this lame and lamb menu MS better to correct bug which they put with march update, so its often we have to reboot Surface after up to five minutes waking it up vainly
  • I don't have any problems with my RT and haver all updates installed.  I like the update.  More convenient to use effectively. Plus, I don't have to curse to make a point.
  • Using the new start screen, love it.  Not sure why people are so against it..those are the same people that are impossible to please, no doubt. It's a lot more user friendly to have the desktop view.  I can access everything i need to much faster now.  
  • It's not that anyone is for sure 'against' this, just questioning it's usefulness. Although I am one of those people wondering the point I'm happy to hear someone finds use for the update. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Everyone was complaining when they thought RT WASN'T getting the new start menu.  It's great, no more switching between the metro view and desktop anymore.  If only for the the "Desktop" menu on the taskbar which gives me a menu to everything on the tablet, and also onedrive, is useful enough.  Even though that has always been an option, i never used it since i was mostly on the metro view.  This new update merges the two, finally.
  • Genuinely curious of what the difference is between the start menu having a link for let's say 'windows explorer' or the start screen having the same link. In w8 I had all sorts of desktop links on my start screen. On my rt device the same although other than os/cpanel tiles there's really only office that's desktop. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • What's the point of being on the desktop when there are no desktop programs to use?
  • Darkness, I guess you didn't read my previous comment
  • Clearly he didn't think it was enough reason to use the Desktop. As most would think, and do think. We wanted Win10 RT, not a useless fake W10 UI. We wanted Edge browser, Action/Notification Center, Cortana, W10 Universal App support... Those are much more useful elements that we would have welcomed. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Obviously... so would I, but that's not what we got.  People are incorrectly saying this update is useless though... just out of stubborness.  
  • Not sure what your point is, but i use Office and Outlook more than 50% of the time when i am on the desktop, both are available for Windows RT. 10% of the time i use PowerShell, also available for Windows RT and 10% i am using FileEplorer, which is also available for RT.The remaining 30% i would not spend with a tablet device anyway.
  • I guess I'm not disappointed by the update. I have switched to it to try it for a while. one thing that threw me off at first was that when I tapped the hardware windows button while in an app, it didn't change my screen, but rather opened the new menu. i think I like not losing view of my current app while I select something else. it isn't a functional difference, but I like it. Not sure if or how long I will keep with the start menu, but I like it nonetheless.
  • A feature I like is when i'm in split screen mode and close an app on one side then tap the empty background, the start menu opens and the new app I select fills the empty half of the screen.
  • yeah, why did microsoft do this....specially if we cant use windowed apps.   windows 8.1 feels so bad now i got used to 10
  • I don't even want to hear their excuse as to why couldn't they put w10 mobile on a 10" phone, continuum mode as default
  • My guess is that they won't give us Widows mobile is that it would keep us from paying for Office 365. They made Apple and Android free office apps then realized they needed to restrict it to small devices to make money. Remember the months we all waited expecting to get touch Office on Surface? And no explanation from MS of course. I started reading about Jolla tablets today, sounds pretty nice.
  • They could have just put Windows RT on phones, then you would have  full OS instead of dumbed down Windows Mobile.
  • This is how 8.1 should have been designed Right from first......
  • Another MS FAIL!!!
  • Okay.....  
  • Know what I would like, I would like to be able to use this on 8.1 (pro, no RT) so if I need to keep 8.1 around for WMC for example, I can have my start menu back.... ANy hacks ?
  • There are plenty of third party apps that do this. Check out stardock they had the start menu available since w8 launched. Or you could just follow this article to instal wmc on win 10 Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • And they won't release on 8pro because if you want a start menu, they want you on 10 Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I was one of the people who started the thread of hacking WMC into WIndows 10, Trust me, I know every detail about it... I am talking about runnint the start menu on 8.1, no RT...
  • I know and look at my first point
    Check out Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • It's like people haven't discovered google yet Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • """Windows RT devices, which mainly will include Surface RT, Surface 2, and the Nokia Lumia 2520.""" Uhmm Sammy had RT devices before Nokia.
    Probably sold more as well.
  • Would you give me any name of Sammy's RT devices?
  • Samsung Ativ Tab, but it was only released in UK. I doubt that it sold more than the 2520.
    Samsung canceled it for all other markets cause they already knew that it won't sell.
  • It was sold in South Africa and therefore outside the UK/US
  • I left my wife's account as is, but switched mine to using the 'new' start menu...meh. The start screen is better. The transition from start screen to desktop is so cool when you use the same background image for both and a desktop tile on the start screen... that should have stayed with w10. Why not just add the start menu to the desktop and enable a desktop icon to return to the start screen? I also love the suggestion above of having the keyboard tell the device which mode to be in when attached (desktop) or disconnected(tablet) ... why hasn't that been done already?
    Oh well, another Microsoft device to throw in a drawer someday ... with the others ... hope my icon never ends up in there.
    Thanks, Microsoft. No, really. I mean it. Seriously. From the heart. Nothing but love. Truth.
  • They did the kb detachment bit on w10... although it rarely if ever works. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Mine works 80% time!
  • The title should be "How to disable the Windows RT 8.1 start menu".
  • You don't have to disable it, if you don't ENABLE it first!!
  • Just tried it on my first gen surface, which I still use. I can confirm, there is no point (usefulness) to it.
  • Not true. Much more convenient.
  • I'll take this any day over the POC XMAL based start menu of Windows 10.
  • Totally pointless on a touch screen. Stop making nonsense MS
  • Its ok, I guess. Even with the new menu, I'll want it full screen. What's the point to keeping the desktop in view when nothing but office and file explorer run there?
  • Why did they waste the time to implement this new Start Menu in an essentially dead OS? Esepcially since it's not even the Windows 10 Start Menu.
  • Because new features shut people up
    However, they should have thought about what they were going to back port a little better. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • This list of comments indicates that it has the opposite effect of shutting people up. In fact it got me reading about Jolla tablets today. I'm tired of MS abuse. I like W10 alot, but I see universal apps as the next tablet failure. I like the Sailfish UI, at least better than Apple or regular Android.
  • Wait, can we not make it wider than one column? Seriously? Am I missing something? EDIT: I see now, you just have to keep pinning things and it expands. You cant expanding manually. EDIT2: I dont see any way to make groups - it autoarranges everything compact. I dont think I'm going to be able to live with this.
  • Well disable it then.  Boom.  Back to where you were.
  • I guess useful for those few who use a keyboard and mouse (can you?) with it. Unless there are other e.g. performance improvements, not much point upgrading for most.
  • The right use is: click on the browser - go to windows.uservoice and vote für this suggestion:
  • Waste of time. MS has made up their mind on this. Its not happening. They know how many RTs were sold and the maximum number of votes this could possibly be.
  • I have the Nokia Lumia 2520, as far as I know it has the Snapdraggon 800 processor so what would it take to use Windows 10 mobile on this tablet. I have not been able to find a good anwer? anybody thanks!
  • Hopefully someone figures it out.   Nothing yet.
  • design is more beautiful than w10
  • I am disappointed at the lack of universal apps. The start screen being replaced is kinda pointless. It does currently make me regret the purchase however. If apps stop working then ill be regretting it though. Tldr. Meh
  • I think it will take a year or more for existing apps to start dropping off. But dont expect any new apps. By then, I will have upgraded.
  • I'll be keeping the start screen.
  • Microsoft has really lost it. Why on earth would they think having the start menu on a touch screen tablet is a good idea? On top of that Windows RT can't run any desktop apps besides MS Office, users won't even be using the desktop all that much. An entirely pointless update.
  • The Windows kernel runs on ARM, the Universal App engine should also work, the UI can obviously be made working. Really, either W10 is the not as modular as advertised and the largest marketing BS in history, or this is just another piece of MS deliberately letting down on a group of customers.
  • The latter.
  • Windows in general is quite modular. Its just Microsoft stopped caring so,much about it and wanting to kill it. They don't have much concern about RT users pissing off, especially who are last year buyers. I don't own RT devices but I feel bad for those users. If those users switch platform instead of buying new Windows tablet, you can't totally blame them. Those users did trust Microsoft but now feels like they have been abandoned.
  • You people complain to much. At least its an update. The right reason you cant get Win10 is because it never was designed for it. Different architectures. Gosh stop talking bad about MS when yall know your not going to apple. Its all just talk. Get happy and be quiet.
  • Please educate yourself.
  • Did you know W10M also runs with ARM CPU right? Also you can't force people to stay happy when they don't. They're pissed off and you can't totally blame them. How you will feel if let's say suddenly if your current PC cant be upgraded to Windows 10 simply because you don't own a Surface?
  • Nice work MS. I really have found it efficient and very usable. I find I use my S2 more often than S3 for just browsing. IE touch on S2 is really good for that use. 
  • Yay the start screen is still here :D
  • Without a doubt, this is a welcome addition to the operating system......... Oh I hope some Apple fanboy makes a parody video of this article, now that would be funny. Add me to the list of disgruntal Surface users who won't be buying anymore Microsoft products.
  • I like it... Implemented and set it up. It's faster and more efficient this way. Brings my habits online with what I do on 10 desktop now. I never parked my behind on Start Screen anyway. My main use for the Nokia is surfing and Office. Yes I keyboard and mouse with it.
  • As usual, most folks bite the hand of the giver if it's Microsoft giving. :)
    Me? I'm so pro W10, my coworkers think I've joined a cult. But I see the BIG picture and it's loooong run. Specifically, our corporate applications are powerful, but are bound to the x86 desktop. W10 has changed everything for us. We can now develop fresh universal apps that literally "unbundle" our giant (legacy VB6\SQL) application and deploy on light, mobile, inexpensive hardware.
    Having said all that, I reach for my 2520 multiple times everyday because it is wicked versatile in my world, both personal and business. I know its days are numbered, but it's nice to see Microsoft not ignoring the little RT Beast.
    Long live my 2520. Loyal workhorse that is has proven to be.
  • Some people can afford to wait for 5 years for the dream to come to fruition.  You do realize that's how long it's been since WP7 launched, right?  I'm not even counting the lead up to WP7 launch which would put it closer to 6 years. Yea, you're almost joined a cult.  Take off the blinders.  It's 5+ years in, and Microsoft is doing yet another reboot.  There's nothing wrong with being loyal to a platform, but I don't think your thoughts are grounded in sound logic.  It's time to just realize that Microsoft's platform has a tarnished reputation and their mobile platform is never going to be the dominant system. Consumers care a lot less about "One Windows" than you people impress on these forums.  It just isn't that way in the real world, where people use a mishmash of services from dispirate sources and many of them don't even care about conforming every device they own to a single ecosystem.  Microsfot was way too damn late to do what they did.  In a way, they took an entire detour to the same freaking place.  Winodws MObile was to Winodws 9x/XP/Vista what Winodws 10 Mobile is to Windows 10 Desktop.  If only they had improved thier OS as they went along, as Google has done (Android was HORRIBLE in its first revisions), they probably wouldn't have even been in the predicament they are now. The reason why Windows Mobile failed is becasue Microsoft sat on their thumbs, and I don't think there is anything they can do to reverse the trajectory at this point.  I'm sure they will find their niches.  Blackberry has a solid niche that will keep them in business.  But they will never truly challenge either iOS or Android in the mobile space.  Wake up.
  • useless talking. some will never wake up. WP7 was a total wreck!, WP7.8 was a dust in the eye while laughing at users who fell for it. Windows RT again a total disapp. for it being killed while users spent their own money to buy those tablets. If some want to throw their money at MS while getting slammed like this, leave them's pointless to try to wake them up. I have also got frammed by MS with WP7, then again with WinRT, but now I have managed to escape, doesn''t matter to which other platform. I work for my money and won't accept to burn them away at MS beta products anymore. and windows 10 counts also on this too...worse than a beta.
  • Man.  I really like it.  Matches up pretty good with my 10 desktop. Much more convenient than Windows 8.1, in my opinion.
  • For my Gen1 Surface I will leave it as is. I'm not a fan of Win10 on my HP Stream7. Love it on my laptop. I enjoy Win8 on my tablet...even if it is RT.
  • This is a joke. Not even close to the Windows Phone 7.8 update (which was also a joke). In the forseeable future I'll make sure to stay far away from all Microsoft products that doesn't involve (full) Windows and x86... (i.e. Windows 10 Mobile, Band, etc)
  • Thanks Microsoft , first I bought a Surface 1 , then Surface 2, now I feel like a abandoned ship ...
  • Windows RT is "full" Windows. It is just not x86 Windows. Microsoft is shooting themselfs in the foot. Not because of angry users, but because they dont have any full (desktop) OS solution for ARM processors anymore. They cornered themself pretty much into x86 territory.
  • lol the new microsoft is so clueless.
  • I really looooove this update, its about time RT got some lovin
  • Wow, this is how I wish Windows 10's start menu looked.  Why'd they give us the ugly one and put the great one on a dead quasi-platform?
  • Well, it's been almost 3 years since I bought my Surface RT, I'm still very enjoying using my Surface RT, but I think it's about time to upgrade it to a Surface 3.......
  • So not only does this update bring in the unwanted and useless start menu it also crops profile pictures to circles (W10 style). MS is on crack again.
  • Yeah, no. I love touch, why would I use a retarded menu that is for people who couldn't be bothered using the really nice touch screens their computers came with?
  • Not really disappointed in the update either, but I am definitely contemplating selling or trading in my extremely well built 2520 with keyboard/battery for a Surface Pro 4. Need a bit more than RT offers, but has been good during the interim.
  • Is this a joke? Deskop users end up with a useless tablet menu where you can't pin anything to the left, and tablet users get treated to a desktop menu where they can pin all their lack of desktop apps to the left? This is totally useless. MS could have at least kept the RT relevant by giving it Universal app support, or I dunno, give desktop users the old start menu from here.
  • The rt has never been relevant.
  • "you're required to sign out and sign back in to switch between the Start menu and the Start screen" Wot? Surely not between Start screen and Desktop? Windows 8 Start Screen is the best thing for Tablets! I can't understand the flag Win8.1 has been getting, it's brilliant with its live tiles etc. So basically we are getting a Win7 menu, which is smaller that in Win 7 and live tiles that you only see when you look in the start menu. No thanks!
  • I'm planning on selling my device and never trust Microsoft again.  
  • I tried that. Put my pristine Surface rt on Craigslist at $50 and got Zero calls!!
  • Screwed by this joke of a company again. First by wasting 600 bucks on this Surface rt crap when it first came out. All of the lies about all of these great apps that were coming soon. What a joke. And then I wasted 400 bucks on a Lumia 830 from AT&T that won't be getting any updates either. Leaving this joke for Apple. My Surface rt Does make a great paperweight though. These morons should be in prison for fraud. Or criminal stupidity.
  • Hi all! It will be better if MS enables dual boot on Surface RT or/and works on real migration towards Windows 10. Moreover in France, a lot of Surface 2 have problem with tactile screen following software uptade ; MS makes anything to solve the problem and we need to return suface to MS!!!!