Microsoft seemingly backtracks on placing ads in the Windows 11 Weather app

MSN Weather app in Microsoft Store
(Image credit: Future)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft began testing ads within the MSN Weather app among Insiders last month.
  • The app also included the MSN news feed, including showing stories not related to the weather.
  • The additions were met with criticism.
  • Microsoft has since removed some of the ads from the MSN Weather app as well the MSN news feed, seemingly in response to negative feedback.

When trending news and ads began to appear within the MSN Weather app last month, many took to the web to criticize the additions. Microsoft began testing the content within the Weather app for Windows 11 and Windows 10 among Insiders. Critics called out the company for shoehorning the MSN news feed and ad banners into its apps and services.

Microsoft seems to have responded to the negative feedback, as the latest version of the Weather app does not show the MSN news feed or as many ads, even if you're an Insider. There are still some ads within the app, but they are less prominent.

As seen by DeskModder, the spot that previously held an ad banner now shows when the sun and moon will rise and set.

The ads and MSN news feed never appeared in the production version of the MSN Weather app. Without confirmation regarding its reasoning, it's difficult to determine exactly why Microsoft shipped ads and then removed them. There's a chance that Microsoft tested the concept of having ads within the app and then decided against it due to feedback. That would be a strong example of why it's important to have Insider versions of apps.

Windows Central take

I hope that this change is a sign that Microsoft is aware that people are upset about ads being shoehorned into apps and services. I understand that the company needs to make money, but I don't think the Windows weather app needs to include ads. In my opinion, Microsoft should either have an ad-free version of the app or not have a weather app at all. Third-party developers can fill any void for a weather app with ad banners.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at