A new report has surfaced containing new details on the upcoming Windows “Threshold”, including a claim that the Modern UI (Metro) environment will be completely disabled on some devices.
At BUILD Microsoft already announced that at some point in the future the start menu would return to Windows along with windowed Modern UI apps. Previous rumours indicated that the start menu was coming to Windows 8.1 Update 2, scheduled for an August-September release, but others denied that, saying it would arrive somewhere in 2015. According to this new report like those features will indeed be coming in Threshold, not Update 2.
Threshold is, of course, a codename, nobody knows for sure what it will be called once it is officially released, it might be Windows 9 or Windows 8.2 or something completely different. What we do know is that Threshold isn’t 8.1 Update 2, Threshold is a major upgrade like Windows 8.1 was.
Threshold won’t bring a lot of changes for tablet users, they’ll still get the Modern UI environment like they get in Windows 8.1, the really big changes in Threshold are coming to mouse and keyboard users. For desktop users the Modern UI will be completely disabled by default according to this report. However, this doesn’t mean the Store and it’s apps are going away, they will just be perfectly integrated in the desktop so you don’t have 2 separate environments like you have in Windows 8.1. The apps will run in regular desktop windows, not full-screen and the full-screen start screen will be replaced with a more traditional start menu.
The report further claims that Threshold will bring further enhancements to app snapping and that the UI of Threshold will be “visually distinct from Windows 8.1”, suggesting a complete UI overhaul.