Especially around user experience, but I guess time will tell
As it’s evolving between Milestone 3 and Beta, Windows 8 still has to spend quite a lot of time in the oven before its fully baked, this much has to be clear. There’s a lot to Windows 8 that the public hasn’t seen yet, and in this regard, the Beta Build will do a much better job at revealing just what the final product will look and feel like.Ahead of the launch of Windows Developer Preview I opined on a range of occasions that Microsoft was bound to follow the development and release strategy of Windows 7.
That’s why I was not surprised that early adopters received an M3 release at BUILD, namely Windows 8 Build 8102, and not the Beta development milestone, as some were expecting.
Softpedia readers might remember that the same happened with Windows 7, and that at the 2008 edition of the Professional Developers Conference, devs received a pre-Beta M3 Build of Windows Vista’s successor.
But at the same time, there are differences. The fact that the first preview of Windows 8 brings more to the table, evolution-wise, than the Windows 7 M3 Build offered at PDC is indisputable. This even though both releases are developer previews at heart.
With the introduction of the Metro platform, apps, and UI, the software giant is also offering a taste of the core user experience. But one that has yet to be wrapped up. At least this is what Chaitanya Sareen, program manager lead on the Core Experience Evolved team, seems to be suggesting:
“With regard to the main user experience, particularly Start, we’re noticing some themes in your comments. Will there be a way to close Metro style apps without going to Task Manager? (Yes there will be, but we also want to talk about why you probably won't need to use it),” Sareen said.
“Are we going to do anything to make the mouse more efficient in scrolling through your programs in Start? (Yes, we'll improve that experience, and show you much more in the beta.)”
This to me sounds like a hint that there are new Windows 8 features still waiting to surface, and that the Beta Build will sport a number of changes compared to the Developer Preview.
Windows 8 Developer Preview Build 8102 Milestone 3 (M3) is available for download here.