Tue. May 21st, 2024

Microsoft was testing a change that replaced the Show Desktop taskbar button with a Copilot button.

Microsoft really wants you to use its Copilot AI assistant. The company even went as far as replacing the Show Desktop button in Windows 11 with a button to open Copilot. That was apparently a step too far, as the change is now being reversed.

Microsoft is now rolling out Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22635.3566 (KB5037002) in the Windows 11 Beta Channel. Among other changes, the Show Desktop button on the far right side of the taskbar is now enabled by default again, instead of showing a Copilot button. The Copilot button can be brought back by right-clicking the taskbar and selecting “Taskbar settings.”

When Microsoft first added Copilot to Windows 11 in 2023, it was a new button in the center of the taskbar, next to the search bar and multitasking button. Microsoft later experimented with moving it to the right side of the taskbar, replacing the Show Desktop button that has been around since Windows 7 (or Windows 98, if you count beta builds). The Copilot button is also more colorful than the monochrome status icons, making it stick out more in the interface. Microsoft did the same thing with the Bing Chat button (later the Copilot button) in the Edge browser.

Copilot Invasive

Microsoft only said the reversal was “in response to feedback” and didn’t elaborate further. The change didn’t seem to be popular, since the Show Desktop button been around for 15 years and many people don’t want to use Copilot at all. It’s not clear if that initial change made it to many people outside the Windows 11 Insider Preview channels, but soon it will be reversed. You can also change it manually by right-clicking on the taskbar and selecting “Taskbar settings,” or by opening the Settings app and navigating to Personalization > Taskbar.

The same Beta build also improves Widgets icons on the taskbar, so they should no longer be pixelated or fuzzy, and widgets on the lock screen are now “more reliable and have improved quality.” Microsoft has been experimenting more with the lock screen on Windows 11 over the past few months: a weather panel started rolling out in January, and in March, Microsoft was showing advertisements for Copilot as a QR code.

Source: Microsoft

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By John P.

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