We don’t always like it when system vendors layer their own user interface elements on top of the operating system. The supposed enhancements are often clunky, and they rarely match the overall aesthetic of the OS. In some cases, though, a little tweaking can add valuable functionality. Samsung appears to be doing just that with an S Launcher widget that returns the Start menu to Windows 8.
Mashable has a brief look at the widget, which has been spotted on some new Samsung all-in-one systems. S Launcher appears to be activated using a desktop icon rather than a tweaked taskbar. Otherwise, it looks similar to the Windows 7 Start menu, complete with a search field that reportedly calls up related applications and system settings. Samsung has also added a separate settings widget that consolidates common Control Panel options that aren’t in their usual locations in Win8.
When Microsoft’s new operating system hits shelves in October, I’m sure there will be no shortage of third-party tools to tweak the desktop interface. As long as Samsung’s widgets are easy to use and don’t interfere with OS updates, they could be valuable additions to Windows 8. Thanks to The Verge for the tip.