Microsoft Start is Replacing Microsoft News

Posted on September 7, 2021 by Paul Thurrott in Android, Bing + MSN, iOS, Microsoft Consumer Services, Windows 10, Windows 11 with 24 Comments

Microsoft Start is a new personalized news feed that will be available across mobile, web, Windows 10, Windows 11, and Microsoft Edge.

Well, “new” in the sense that it is replacing Microsoft News. Which replaced MSN News. Which replaced Bing News. OK, it’s just a new name.

“Microsoft Start is a personalized news feed and collection of informational content provides news from premium publishers, timely updates tailored to your interests, and is available when and where you want it,” Microsoft corporate vice president Liat Ben-Zur writes. “Microsoft Start will begin rolling out today and is conveniently available as a standalone website, as a mobile app on both Android and iOS, from the News and interests experience on the Windows 10 taskbar, from the Widgets experience in Windows 11, and from the Microsoft Edge new tab page.”

Based on the screenshots that Microsoft provided, Microsoft Start appears to take on the look and feel of the News and Interests/Widgets experiences in recent Windows versions, with colored, rounded rectangles of featured topics. But it also appears to be nothing more than a rebranded version of the current MSN and Microsoft News services, which haven’t proved to be of particularly high quality. It remains to be seen whether Microsoft Start will be any better.

For its part, Microsoft claims that Microsoft Start brings new technology to content experiences, “including Microsoft’s latest advancements in AI and machine learning, coupled with human moderation, to help people stay up to date with information that is personalized for their interests.” It features content from over 4,500 global premium publishing brands with over 1,000 partners, and is both curated and personalized, so you can tailor it to show you only what you want to see.

Microsoft also promises immersive experiences for things like hyper-local weather forecasts, traffic, the stock market, and sports scores. (In fact, those might be the topics that appear at the top of the feed in those colored boxes.)

Microsoft Start launches today. You can download the mobile app versions here.

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Comments (24)

24 responses to “Microsoft Start is Replacing Microsoft News”

  1. simont

    Oh joy, a new app to show me stories about how I won't believe random celeb looks in a bikini

  2. covarr

    I see it's continuing the Microsoft tradition of allowing me to personalize it with my own preferred topics and then ignoring that personalization and showing me primarily politics and celebrity news. So that's exciting.

  3. gregsedwards Seriously?!

    Guys, hear me out on this one...

  4. hrlngrv

    Same quality news sources as MSN? Just a new name for the same lip stick beslathered pig?

    Yup, smells like MSFT.

  5. redstar92

    @paul thurrott any way for a publisher such as yourself to get into this? Did they contact you at all? Its tough to recommend this, I would love to be able to add in my youtube subscriptions, your site, windows central, a bunch of foreign news sources but that seems to be impossible :(

  6. winner

    So to read news, use Start.

    To shut down, choose Start and then power off.

    To Start an app, double click on the app icon.

    Such a coherent UI!

  7. dspeterson

    Ok, this makes a lot more sense now, I was wondering why App Store said I had already installed this app before.

    Hands down the worst part of this is the idea of a global comments section in the app across all news sources.

  8. bluvg

    Exploiting the base instincts of homo sapiens is such good business, Microsoft can't help itself but try to get in on a piece of that.

  9. lvthunder

    It's AI. It's not going to get it right for a day or two of you using it. Spending 10 minutes isn't going to do it. You have to give it at least a couple days.

      • Daninbusiness

        To elaborate - I get that some training may be necessary, but I don't see the point of suffering through the recommendations to eventually, hopefully, train the thing, considering that MS is pretty happy to blow up my preferences every time they re-invent this feed.

        But then again, maybe it will make someone else happy. So hopefully that all works out.

        • lvthunder

          Then don't bother with it or any other new service of this type. My comment applies to people who look at it for 10 minutes and decide it's not good.

          • JerryH

            It really shouldn't take more than 10 minutes for someone who is adept at this sort of thing. It has categories that you can turn on and off in the settings. It has data inputs from things like clicking the items to not show stories from certain sites and the items for "less like this". If it can't react to even the categories selected in 10 minutes, why would anyone waste more time with it? Granted someone unaware of how to go to the category list and make selections or unaware of how to send signals to the service would need more time. But those of us who understand these things are not going to waste more time than that on it.

  10. navarac

    Aimed at the reader with a mental reading age of 6.

  11. tdemerse

    Will this integrate with Launcher? I just turned off the Launcher news integration because it did not always play well with the somewhat unified news settings on the bing homepage and taskbar news pane.

  12. JerryH

    I just tried the standalone page and I agree; it is awful. Just full of stupid stories about crazy celebrities and sports stars. I spent 10 minutes telling it to show no stories from E!, WonderWall, etc. and saying "less like this" to a bunch of these and still get "best celebrity in bikini photos" things in my feed. is much better.

  13. james.h.robinson

    Looks like it can be customized similar to Google News. I guess we'll see how it goes.

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