Microsoft continues to frustrate users with ads in the operating system - this time plaguing the MSN Weather app

Windows 11 logo in front of the new wallpapers
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft has made another move to push more advertising into Windows 11, with fresh ads arriving in the stock Weather app installed by default. So, alongside the likes of the Start menu and the Settings app, now the MSN Weather app will also have ads - more intrusive efforts, too, once again pointing towards a system-wide ‘adpocalypse’ as it were. 

According to Windows Latest, a new server-side update now places two ads in the default Weather app as soon as you open it, and the situation is more dire than normal because the advertisements in question are pinned. In other words, even as you scroll down, looking at the forecasts and other details in the app, the ads will scroll, too, remaining constantly visible.

This is a pretty aggressive approach, similar to the Game Pass ad in the Settings app - and as I said in that instance, it seems like Microsoft is trying to usher in a whole new era of over-advertising. I fear that as time progresses, not only will we see more of these ads, but they might become more aggressive in terms of being unskippable and generally unavoidable.


Ads pinned to the Microsoft Weather app. (Image credit: Windows Latest)

Okay, so it could be argued that these are just small ads in the corner, and we all have to deal with ignoring or skipping advertisements in so much of our lives these days - but why should I do that on my PC, too? You’re telling me now that the new normal is just advertising everywhere I look - and not a single bit of technology is my own? 

I paid for my PC and its operating system, and I don’t expect to have to suffer through ads (which might be expected on a free OS, granted - but not one that’s charged for).

Also, while at the moment they’re only relatively little ads, the fear is that Microsoft might push boundaries in the future. If - or when, perhaps - these advertisements become more and more accepted, we could see personalized, bigger, unavoidable, and maybe even one-day unskippable ads in Windows 11 (or a future version of the desktop OS). 

It’s not like these ads are placed in some obscure part of Windows 11; you’re often going to find yourself opening up the Settings app, Start menu, or perhaps perusing the weather forecast, and so on. If more advertisements are placed in more prominent places, at what point will that make using your computer infuriating? It’s a dangerous path to tread with Windows 11, but one Microsoft seems intent on exploring, sadly.

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Muskaan Saxena
Computing Staff Writer

Muskaan is TechRadar’s UK-based Computing writer. She has always been a passionate writer and has had her creative work published in several literary journals and magazines. Her debut into the writing world was a poem published in The Times of Zambia, on the subject of sunflowers and the insignificance of human existence in comparison. Growing up in Zambia, Muskaan was fascinated with technology, especially computers, and she's joined TechRadar to write about the latest GPUs, laptops and recently anything AI related. If you've got questions, moral concerns or just an interest in anything ChatGPT or general AI, you're in the right place. Muskaan also somehow managed to install a game on her work MacBook's Touch Bar, without the IT department finding out (yet).