Microsoft Windows 8, has been in the talks for quite a long time now, and has gained significant level of importance among techies and specially those who live by the rule of user experience and design. No doubt, as oppose to previous versions of Windows its not as simple and small tweak in the look, but an entirely fresh idea of interface to interact with software. Having said that, the buzz does not seem to be justified by looking at the Start screen only, because there is all that more that we use everyday on Windows, and it has that old same look.
Brand new look! on Start!
Alright, here we power-on, and Wow. It stars very fast and there you see it “oooooh Metro, oh i mean Windows8 Style UI start screen”. No doubt, it looks really Cool and AWESOME!
So as I see all new nicely tiled Start screen, my first impression is where is the desktop. I am looking for Start button, a taskbar and desktop shortcuts for my software. With all that in mind, it takes a fraction of minutes to digest the all new look of Windows 8.
Its aLive! and it breaths.
Colorful tiles give Start screen a very cool effect, and when they are live with latest updates they look even better. It really feels the best use of aesthetics on an interface and give modern contemporary look for an OS.
All that magic charm goes away, when switch to desktop view! sad.
As soon as you switch to the desktop view, you will loud out “Holly Crap”, Windows8 is all that same Windows7. So what was all that crazy buzz about Metro, Windows8 UI Style for Windows8 for all these days…that was just the Start screen…duh!
Everything slides out of your screen you saw on start, when you close it and you see same old desktop, same start button (but its flat gray button, look yaikh) and same task bar that I was missing (oh Yes!)
How do you feel, when Folders and Software open in same old Windows legacy style that you used to see for all these years, one could say “thank you Microsoft for not horrifying us with too many changes“, or could say, “is that all you could fashionize for Windows8“.
But wait, should I learn how to use it!
I am using it and I can now understand when they are saying that…
“Learning curve is steep and in-app navigation isn’t obvious.”
Two UI, confuse me like brrrrr!
In Windows 8, you get two different style of interfaces, (1) Metro (Win8 Style UI) and (2) Same old Legacy Desktop. When using OS it feels like two different Operating Systems running at the same time…wow! (You can say, you get 2 in the price of 1!).
In an Study by Nielsen he found that the users took issue with the operating system’s supposed “duality” that includes a tablet-focused Start screen and a more traditional “PC-oriented desktop screen.”
PC Mag goes even further and says…
“Windows 8 Is a Desktop Disaster”
Because both Interfaces (Metro and Desktop) work differently, which makes it highly inconsistent user experience. Its an interface, where OS wants its users to learn and remember where to go for which features and how they will work.
Hidden actions, oh yes Charms are very charming
In Windows8 all your PC screen is covered by either the Start Screen and Tiles, or when playing an App, its also full screen. So there is no place you can see action buttons for allowing users to perform windows related actions. All these actions are placed in a bar of icons that is hidden and you can discover while you point mouse to screen’s upper-right corner on PC.
When we designing Apps/Web we face this challenge of showing all important action on the screen so that user dont have to think or learn on finding them. Accessibility to actions in an App or OS is so important that one cannot leave it to users to discover it themselves. Hidden actions make it difficult for users and adds burden to remember different actions hidden at different positions. We dont expect all users to understand actions that change on different screens and do different things.
If users cant find an action, they will not be able to work, so they will get frustrated and simply stop trying a feature.
99% of all consumers will never find the damn thing same Start button thanks to new Start Screen in all its Metro glory.
Thanks Microsoft, I can write tutorial on switching off Windows 8
No Start button! So how do you shut it down? Well, shutting down Windows used to be a simple matter of clicking the Start button and choosing the “Shut down” option. and here is what my Tutorial would say and its very first my Howto Tutorial…
How to Shut down Windows 8!
1. Hover your mouse over the Zoom icon that appears in the lower right corner of the screen,
2. Click the Settings icon,
3. then the Power Icon,
4. Clicking Shut down will close Windows 8 and turn off your PC.
or you can quickly Press Power button to shutdown.
There are several ways of shutting down Windows 8, but they are not quick or convenient. Even with the Start button gone, why didn’t Microsoft include a more user-friendly way to close Windows 8?
One last thing
- Windows 8 look like Windows 7 with a fancy layer of colored and rich tiled screen on top.
- It makes it difficult for users by removing legacy Start Button/Icon and leaving customer unsatisfied.
- Also its one OS which Microsoft is aiming for all platforms, yet it comes with different apps for each and store as well. Confused.
Dont worry, you will soon hear an Update for fixing their own mistakes.