Another area in Windows 11 may show ads in the future

Martin Brinkmann
May 8, 2023
Windows 11 News

Most customers who have bought Windows 11 or upgraded from an earlier version of Windows that they bought may not have expected that they will see more and more advertisement in the operating system.

Twitter user Albacore, known for deep diving into Windows Insider Builds, has discovered that Microsoft is working on pushing ads on the Home Settings page of the system.

When users open the Settings app, Home is the start page. The upcoming Home page may display an ad for Microsoft 365 at the top. It offers a free trial for Microsoft 365. Below that, Microsoft may display storage information and tips on finishing securing the account.

microsoft settings ads

A second iteration of the Home page has the Microsoft 365 ad displayed at the bottom of the screen, and the Storage component above it.

microsoft windows 11 settings ads

The Accounts page may display product support notification in the future. The following screenshot shows a notice informing the user that Office 2013 support has ended.

microsoft settings ads windows

The Home ads are not the only areas of Windows 11 that may get advertisement for Microsoft 365 in the future. Microsoft has been testing Start Menu ads recently. These are displayed in the session menu when users click on their profile icon in Start.

Microsoft has tested several iterations of these, including one that displays an error icon on the profile icon if a local Windows account is used. There has also been an experiment with File Explorer ads in 2022.

Microsoft is pushing Microsoft Accounts on Windows 11 and, as the next step, a Microsoft 365 subscription. While using a Microsoft Account has benefits to a user, some users prefer to use local accounts. There are good reasons for using a local account, including that Microsoft does not know nearly as much about the user.

It is clear that Microsoft is pushing its subscription-based service to increase revenue. It almost seems as if these upsells could become one of Microsoft's major strategies going forward.

Most of these changes have appeared in Insider builds only up until now. It remains to be seen if and how they land in Stable versions, and whether users will have options to turn these off.

Now You: what do you think about this trend? (via Deskmodder)

Another area in Windows 11 may show ads in the future
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Another area in Windows 11 may show ads in the future
Microsoft's Windows 11 operating system may soon display ads on the Home page when users open the Settings application on the operating system.
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  1. Kutamuono said on May 8, 2023 at 5:49 pm

    Wouldn’t it be amazing if turning on your computer meant that you were forced to watch a few ads before you arrive at the login screen..the computer would also know if you watched them or went to the toilet while it was booting up so when you come back you still have to watch them or you won’t be able to use the computer. That’s where Microsoft is taking us. Their greed is endless. Think about it: HOW is Windows making your life/computing experience better? IN ANY SHAPE OR FORM? HOW? It isn’t. It’s a user hostile OS. The very second gaming on linux gets really good, Windows will start to die. Fast.
    The whole planet will rejoice.

    1. basingstoke said on May 9, 2023 at 4:19 pm

      My computing experience is doing great, and improving gradually over time as I learn more things – the caveat is I use Windows 7, lol.

      1. Scroogled said on May 10, 2023 at 3:43 am

        The same here. I’m continuing to use Windows 7 flawlessly. It’s light, has a proper desktop interface, no bugs, no ads, no unnecessary features, no bloated frameworks, no cloud, and no 365. It does what I want rather than what Microsoft wants.

  2. VioletMoon said on May 8, 2023 at 3:58 pm

    Seems the only way for one to see these new ads (or any MS ads) is by “deep diving into Windows”; since setting up a Windows 11 system, I’ve yet to see or read or hear any advertisements in the OS. What does that tell me?

    1. The user would have to be looking for the ads.
    2. The user isn’t experienced enough to block ads.
    3. The user is spending too much time in Settings tinkering around rather than productively working.

    MS is a company; of course, they want to promote their own products. MS hasn’t pushed anything blatantly violating some simple rules of engaging new customers.

    1. basingstoke said on May 9, 2023 at 11:10 am

      broo get real. I’m no expert but “Settings > Home” is likely the default landing page of searching for “settings” in file explorer in W11 – “tinkering around” my ass, that’s not hidden at all. People are complaining probably because they’re old enough to remember a time when the OS didn’t advertise at them, PERIOD – those that don’t complain (such as yourself) are either 1) frog in boiling pot fallacy or 2) short memory span. So which one are you? lol

  3. ECJ said on May 8, 2023 at 2:06 pm

    Microsoft have become such a tacky company. They’ve become a bargain-basement version of Google, but without the competence of Google.

    I was all in on Microsoft in 2015 (I.E. Windows, Windows Mobile, accessories, Microsoft Office, OneDrive, Skype, Edge, Microsoft Account). However, under Satya I have come to despise Microsoft and want as little to do with the company as possible. It’s a shame to see a once trustworthy business-orientated company fall so far.

    The only Microsoft product left that I use now is Windows and I would get rid of that as well if I was able to, but realistically there are only two desktop operating systems suitable for business.

    Which comes to my next question, do Apple treat their MacOS users with as much contempt as Microsoft do?

  4. Someone said on May 8, 2023 at 10:59 am

    So bad, so dissapointing.. M$ as always. After a few years it will have become a graveyard and forgotten memories..

  5. Tom Hawack said on May 8, 2023 at 9:44 am

    My feeling is that this trend is anti-productive for Microsoft.

    The only Microsoft product I use is Windows 7, I avoid the company’s services and servers as well as those of Google, those of GAFAM as a whole to the maximum extent of my possibilities, but I’ve read an article about a user’s feelings regarding Microsoft’s push policy and it’s anti-productive effect :

    ‘Microsoft Edge is better than Google Chrome, but I can’t bring myself to switch’

    — Quoting the article,

    “Personally, I think that people’s resistance to Microsoft Edge is our inclination to think that if Microsoft is pushing something this hard, it can’t be that good. ”

    “Naturally, the easiest way to lose me as a user is to try to keep me locked in with various transparent tricks and gimmicky behavior. No one likes that, and the anti-marketing Microsoft has built-in to its entire product line, soon to include Teams and Office, does a serious disservice to an otherwise incredible web browser.”

    — I don’t know if Microsoft Edge is a better browser or not than Google Chrome, but I definitely share the author’s perception and reaction about Microsoft’s push policies, a pain.

    1. John G. said on May 8, 2023 at 3:51 pm

      I have been working two hours ago with a Chromebook Asus C433 of a classmate and I am surprised about the lack of ads and annoyances it has. It’s quite more easy to work with this Chromebook that with even with Ubuntu/W10. Furthermore, I expected more “Google ads” or similar advertisements or promotion links (like I see here when opening MS 365 Office), but no single one was shown. The new Microsoft rules about so hard insistence with advertisements, and some other legal annoyances to everyone, is like the demolition man of the user’s patience.

      1. Tom Hawack said on May 8, 2023 at 4:38 pm

        Well, you know @John G., there are a company’s products and the way they are promoted. Is pushing a product a smart way to promote it? I don’t think so. Was tricking people by all means to upgrade to Windows 10 a smart way to promote that OS? I don’t think so. On the opposite you have a company such as Google which not only tries to attract, seduce but even made itself desirable for instance when they it launched Gmail : it was reserved to a few at the beginning which triggered envy and not refusal as when a product is pushed, practically forced. I don’t think that adding ads for Microsoft services, applications within Windows modules is smart. This may be an experiment, no idea, but self-promotion conducted in such an intrusive way seems to me definitely irritating for the least and, really, anti-productive. Legendary Don Juan never raped nor even forced, neither I imagine has Giacomo Casanova. Valid communication is all in seduction, even for plain advertisement : a good ad, smart, seductive, not excessively distributed, has a far greater impact than a cheaply-thought and carried one which expects its abundant presence to perform what its cheapness lacks to accomplish.

  6. Digital Psycho said on May 8, 2023 at 8:58 am

    Zorin OS 17 is coming. KDE Plasma 6 is coming. GNOME is already kicking Windows ass. Linux Mint are polishing their moldy old UI. Ubuntu is still garbage though.. But all in all there are not too many reasons for average Joe and Jane to use Windows anymore. Time to switch people, be the change you want to see. Microsoft is not your friend. Your Windows computer is not yours, it’s Microsofts advertising device. Horrible bloatware, nightmare-inducing privacy violations supreme, virus and ransomware magnet, messy Ui, ads and more ads, endless Microsoft account harassments… The list goes on and on and on. Microsoft is like a partner that’s abusing you and you are too dumb to leave. By staying you lose all rights to complain or have any opinions on anything, shut up and enjoy the beatings. They will not stop.

  7. Seeprime said on May 8, 2023 at 7:15 am

    Terrible trend. In the past 15 years Mac market share doubled, to over ten percent. Linux went from 0.5 percent to 3. That’s a growth rate of 600%. Windows has dropped from 90 percent to under 80. Keep this nonsense up Microsoft and see what happens in the next five years.

    1. basingstoke said on May 9, 2023 at 10:51 am

      Seeprime don’t make me laugh dude. 600% increase means nothing if the difference is 1 person became 6 people (Linux numbers are low, lol). Microsoft is dragging it’s OS into the dirt, for sure – but it can probably keep dragging it for 5-10+ years before I’d ever consider Linux – a trashy Windows 11 is still better than any linux distro

      In fact, I’d rather spend a week straight, ripping out all the cancer from Windows 11, getting it to a barely useable state – than tinker with the latest and greatest Linux distro. I give Linux a solid go every few months – and it’s “ok”, but until there is a Linux distro capable of “emulating” (copying) Windows, you probably won’t get amazing adoption – muscle memory is a real thing unfortunately.

    2. CloseAI said on May 8, 2023 at 10:14 pm

      The more they put this crap on its users, the less likely it is that they will use it. Hopefully, Microsoft’s market share falls below 30%, demonstrating that no one wants this garbage inside the Windows operating system. I don’t need any of Microsoft services besides Windows itself. I don’t need 365, MS account, cloud, etc… Leave users the hell alone. It appears that the only choice is to run Linux full-time and Windows in a VM for some software that isn’t supported by Linux. That way, you’re communicating with Windows as little as possible.

    3. John G. said on May 8, 2023 at 3:30 pm


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