In January, Microsoft received feedback about a problem affecting Windows 10/11 search bars and UWP applications, with users unable to open or use these features normally. After investigation, Microsoft confirmed that the issue was tied to the Windows Shell and Office API, with abnormal registry entries or data causing the malfunctions.
Third-party applications integrated via the Office API have also suffered, becoming unworkable. This includes apps integrated into Windows, Office, Outlook, and the Outlook calendar through the Office API.
Interestingly, this issue doesn’t correlate with any Windows updates. Despite several months of attempts to rectify the problem, Microsoft has yet to find a solution. In response, Microsoft has issued a statement via its health dashboard, advising users to uninstall these affected third-party applications.
To mitigate the issue, Microsoft suggests users uninstall the related integrated applications. If users need to use these apps, Microsoft recommends reaching out to the respective third-party software developers for potential solutions.
This situation presents a unique and perplexing case. While Windows and Office are no strangers to issues, theoretically, they should be resolvable. The choice by Microsoft to stop attempting to fix the issue and instead recommend users to uninstall affected apps has left many users and industry experts puzzled.
If third-party software developers are also unable to address the issue, the result might leave users unable to use these applications, raising significant questions about the future usability of the Windows ecosystem. As we continue to watch this story unfold, the implications for both Microsoft and third-party software developers are clear, and we look forward to bringing you the latest updates.