Windows 8 to dump Start button

RIP Windows Start button: 1995 - 2012 (maybe)

Windows' trusty Start button has been synonymous with the operating system since it first arrived on the computing scene rocking Windows 95. Now at just 17 years old, word on the web tells us Microsoft is planning to kill off its Start button in favour of a Start button-free Windows 8 environment.

According to a bunch of leaked images (below) showing off the Consumer Preview of Windows 8 (discovered by The Verge) the new software is missing the Start button.

Contrary to this discovery, other versions of the OS have been spotted sporting a Start button that has been flattened in order to fit in with its new Windows Phone-inspired Metro styling.

So while Windows 8 may not spell the end of the famous Start button, it sounds like change is very much afoot for Windows' iconic little features trigger. To bolster these suspicions, The Verge reports that a contact close to the Microsoft development team suggests that if this staple element of the Windows OS was to leave its designated spot, it wouldn't really be the end of its existence. Instead, the OS would feature a hot corner, a la Mac OS X, to carry out a similar job.

As we're not expecting Windows 8's arrival until towards the end of the year, you should read up on everything you need to know about Microsoft's new OS while Microsoft decides the future of its Start button. While you're at it, you should check out our sneak peek of Microsoft's developer preview.

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