Windows 8.1 Update 1 coming in March
As already revealed by various leaks in late 2013, Microsoft could merge Windows RT and Windows Phone pretty soon. While there is no official confirmation of this event yet, each new update could bring it closer to becoming reality. Until then, it seems the release date of Windows 8.1 Update 1 has been uncovered, as well as most details regarding this patch.
According to an inside source mentioned by ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, the "relatively minor" update to Windows 8.1 will arrive on March 11. The patch will be delivered via Windows Update as usual and will increase the efficiency of the operating system so cheaper tablets will be capable of running Windows 8.1 Update 1 thanks to the reductions of memory and drive space requirements.
Screenshots leaked recently also show that users will be able to pin Metro-style/Windows Store apps to the task bar, while Metro apps will also get a Close button for those users still using a mouse. Unfortunately, it looks like the return of the Start menu and the ability to run windowed Metro apps on the desktop will not be included into this update and could arrive in Windows 9 in early 2015.
Since none of the above is official yet, there is still hope to see at least the old style Start menu being added in a future Windows 8 update.