17 Apr Windows 11’s Start menu prepares to pester you for using a local account
There are many good reasons to use an official Microsoft account, connected at least nominally to your online presence, in Windows 11. And there are at least as many good reasons not to, especially if you’re not at all interested in downloading software from the Microsoft Store. But Microsoft would really, really appreciate it if you just gave it some of that sweet personal info and let it target ads at you, and upcoming builds of Windows 11 aren’t going to shut up about it until you do.
Such is the case for Windows 11 dev build 23435, now available to Windows Insider testers (and also notable for its new presence sensing toggle). Among other tweaks and adjustments, the Start menu will now preach the holy word of the Microsoft account in no less than four nagging pop-up messages: “Sign in to your Microsoft account,” “Use Microsoft 365 for free,” “Keep your account safer,” and “Access your files from anywhere,” highlighting 5GB of free OneDrive space.
These messages are an expansion of the Start Menu notification system Microsoft announced last month, and which were immediately criticized as only “notifications” in the sense that that little cartoon lizard “notifies” you about car insurance. Windows additions that appear in testing builds aren’t automatically slated for implementation in the full release…but like the initial announcement of Start Menu notifications, these ads are getting pride of place in the blog post. They’re coming.