By all accounts this pales into insignificance compared with the number of Pirated copies of Ms Office. In spite of this Ms office is STILL one of the largest (if not the largest) revenue producers for Ms.
This is one reason why Ms decided to go the subscription route for Office -- Office 365. Currently the costs are reasonable but this is only to "sucker you into this method of software usage". Once people have NO choice then you watch --rates will rise horrendously.
Another insidious form of "monetisation" is to license "Per Seat". This perhaps isn't of too much significance to home users but is also a hugely expensive way of paying for software - especially if you have a variable and quite largely fluctuating number of users.
Still given that Office is the most pirated piece of software on Earth and it's STILL ms's most profitable division could it be that Pirating software doesn't really cause the loss in revenue that people allege that it does -- after all how many of the people pirating office would have bought it HAD IT NOT been available on torrent sites -- difficult to say.
I'm not getting into any Moral argument here - merely to say that just because a huge number of people have downloaded a piece of software from a torrent site in no way means that sales of the software would have been significantly different had the software NOT been available on torrents.
When Statistics are quoted people must be VEY CAREFUL in drawing conclusions from them.
I for one hope they do not bring back the Start button (not that it's gone, it's still there it's just square). Just think of how much entertainment would be lost if people didn't have anything to argue and complain about.
It would be nice if MS added a Start menu/button to the Windows 8.1 release, but in reality, I don't think it's going to happen. Doesn't really matter for me though, because I've already gotten used to the Start screen, I don't even think about it anymore.
But it would be a nice surprise if I was wrong.
ps: Can you please return my Aero too, I've seem to lost that too!
I work at a computer repair/support store and deal with people using computers in the business world as well as many home computer users. People that insist that the lack of start button or the modern ui is not an issue to the majority of users are wrong. On a daily basis I deal with customers who have bought a Windows 8 computer from a big box store. They will bring their computers in and ask if they can get Windows 7 installed. They all want the computer to boot to the desktop and the start button back. We have noticed a huge upsurge in selling our refurbished Windows 7 units. Most people are not tech savvy and want something familiar and do not want to adjust to Windows 8.
My understanding was that an upgrade from Windows 8 to Windows 7 was free, for any device that came with Windows 8. At least with Windows 7, you know that Microsoft won't do any mischief and break these third party programs, free or otherwise.
Microsoft actually admitting they were wrong in removing the start menu? I thought they did extensive research and found that it wasn't needed! It looks like this may be a setback for Microsoft in having to admit they misjudged public resistance to the "Modern" interface. I guess the Windows 8 purists who love the "Modern" interface will say Microsoft has defiled Windows 8 and will boycott Windows 8.
Anyway on a more serious note it would be wonderful if Microsoft actually listened to public opinion and put the start menu back in. I will wait for Windows 9 before considering an OS upgrade (as long as Microsoft retains the start menu).