Microsoft has decided to remove some of the ad banners from its Weather application on Windows 11, following a wave of negative feedback from users. This decision marks the tech giant’s latest effort to balance revenue generation with user experience.
Backlash Over Advertisements
Microsoft had recently replaced its standalone Weather app with a web-based version from MSN.com, which resulted in ads appearing throughout the application. This change not only affected free users but also those who had subscribed to Microsoft 365.
Weather app via Windows Latest
The introduction of ads in an essential app such as the Weather client sparked outrage among users, with many expressing their dissatisfaction in the Feedback Hub.
In response to this public outcry, Microsoft has now quietly decided to remove the banner ads from the homepage of the Weather app. However, during testing, it was observed that ads continue to appear on other pages within the app, such as the forecast page and the Life (Health and Safety) dashboard.
Balancing User Experience and Revenue
By reducing the number of ads in the Weather app, Microsoft shows its commitment to addressing user feedback. However, the continued presence of ads within the application remains a point of concern for many.
Unconfirmed sources have indicated that the ads would continue to be a feature of the Weather app across all editions and versions of Windows, including Windows 10 and Windows 11. It is expected that these ads will be interest-based, meaning that cookies from the user’s MSN history will be used to display personalized ads.
Advertising in Windows: A Rising Trend?
This latest incident comes amidst Microsoft’s increased efforts to display advertisements across its desktop platform. Earlier this year, Microsoft experimented with a full-page ad banner in its Chromium Edge browser, recommending its own browser to users attempting to download Google Chrome.
In addition, Microsoft has been testing ways to promote its Microsoft 365 and OneDrive products within the Windows 11 operating system. In the latest Insider Preview build, the company introduced ads for these services within the operating system’s Settings menu.
This increased advertising within Windows has led to a growing frustration among users. Many have criticized Microsoft for full-page ads that potentially discourage the use of Edge and other native apps.
Striking the Right Balance
While advertising can provide a significant revenue stream for tech companies, the challenge lies in striking the right balance between monetization and user experience. Microsoft’s decision to remove some ads from its Weather app indicates its willingness to respond to user feedback.
However, as Microsoft continues to explore ways to promote its services within Windows, users will be closely watching how the tech giant navigates this delicate balance in the future.