Windows 10 Takes Aim At Annoying ‘Crapware’
Microsoft wants to make it easier for Windows 10 users to install a clean version of the operating system on their PCs or other devices. And by clean, it means free of the ads and sample apps that PC makers tend to pack onto new machines. Those ads have come to be known by the not-so-endearing terms of “crapware” or “bloatware.”
The Refresh Windows tool ostensibly will strip off ads that clutter the desktop and can hurt PC performance. One of the reasons Microsoft started offering its own Surface devices was to nuke bloatware, thereby offering a faster, cleaner user experience. PC makers like Dell, HP (HPQ), Toshiba et al. include on-screen ads and promotions as a way to make money while keeping hardware costs down.
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Last month, Microsoft announced plans to offer a tool to strip out unwanted ads and is now apparently making it available to more users running an early version of a Windows 10 update, according to Windows news site WinBeta, which picked up the news from a post on the @h0x0d Twitter (TWTR) account.
This tool will apparently nix third-party ads. It’s unclear if it will do likewise to the increasing number of new Microsoft ads being added to the Windows 10 Start Menu. Fortune has reached out to Microsoft for comment and will update this as needed.
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Asked last month how Microsoft justified adding what some might call bloatware to its own Windows 10 screens, a spokeswoman said customers can always opt out but the company wantes to make sure they have access to “great, relevant and useful apps on their Start Menus.”