By Alexandra Burlacu | Aug 23, 2013 08:13 AM EDT
Lenovo has decided to ship all of its new PCs with a Windows Start Menu replacement to give users what they wanted all along.
When Microsoft released its Windows 8 operating system, many users complained about the lack of a Start menu and demanded they have it back. Microsoft allegedly listened to complained and promised to bring back the Start Menu in Windows 8.1, but that didn't actually happen.
The Windows 8.1 Start icon is nothing like the old Start Menu, it's just an icon that takes users back to basically the same Start Screen they dreaded in Windows 8. Lenovo has decided to take matters into its own hands and if the old Start Menu is what users want, the old Start Menu is what they shall get.
The company has teamed up with SweetLabs, a startup based in San Diego, California, to bundle the Pokki Start Menu replacement software with all new Lenovo PCs running on Windows. With this move, Lenovo hopes to attract more buyers to its PCs.
According to a Bloomberg report, Lenovo first contracted SweetLabs after its co-founder and CMO Chester Ng gave a speech at an Intel Capital conference. Intel has been making notable investments in SweetLabs since 2011 and Ng noted that the startup is also in talks with other hardware manufacturers that may adopt Lenovo's approach.
In other words, if Microsoft didn't really do much to please its Windows customers, PC makers are ready to do their best to fix things. Pokki, however, aims to do more than just serve as a Start Menu replacement.
According to SweetLabs, Pokki "makes the PC better by bringing a modern app experience to the desktop."
Installing Pokki on a Windows 8 device will bring back the Start Menu and will also add SweetLabs' own app store, which has many mobile apps such as the popular YouTube, Facebook, Gmail, Amazon and others. Compared to Windows Store apps, Pokkii apps don't need to run in full-screen and they also work with Windows and Windows XP.
Ng told Bloomberg that SweetLabs will share some of the income it gets from Pokki with PC vendors who agree to preinstall the product like Lenovo has. Ng further said that Lenovo plans to start rolling out PCs with Pokki preinstalled "in the next several weeks."
English-speaking countries will be the first to get new Lenovo PCs with Pokki preinstalled, with other regions set to follow later. Lenovo plans to ship Pokki will all PCs it sells worldwide.
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