The Windows 8 App Experience in Microsoft’s View
Apps are fast and fluid, the same as the entire platform
Windows 8 is Windows redesigned, Microsoft claims, while also saying that this involves a reshaped experience when it comes to applications.Applications that run on the desktop won’t be much affected by the graphical changes in Windows 8, but all changes when it comes to software designed for the Metro UI.
These apps, Metro-style software, can provide users with an experience they never met before on Microsoft’s platform.
The Redmond-based software giant is proud of its achievements in this area, and has reiterated that last week during the TechEd EMEA 2012 in Amsterdam.
During a Windows 8 workshop on the second day of the conference, Microsoft talked of the new experience that Metro apps can deliver to users.
First and foremost, there is the Windows Store, a service for all users to download apps for their computers, and a place for developers to have their products delivered all around the world.
Apps will be listed in categories, to be easier to find, and each app landing page will deliver info on the software, as well as screenshots for users to have a glimpse of the app in action.
To install an application, simply hit the install button, and Windows 8 will send the process to the back, for users to continue exploring the Store. A notification will appear as soon as the app was installed and clicking on it will launch the software.
The Store will be available on all Windows 8 devices, and will be capable of a great experience for all users, designed in the same Metro-style as the platform itself.
Moreover, developers will enjoy a better experience when building applications, through the updated tools that Microsoft has already made available, and which will receive further enhancements.
In fact, the company even added some Metro elements to Visual Studio 2012 in addition to making the development process simpler and faster than before, so as to encourage developers to start building for the platform.
Then, there are the apps themselves, which were designed with minimum chrome, so as to leave more room for content. Microsoft already loaded some of its own apps in the latest Windows 8 release, and those who got the chance to play with it know what they have to offer.
Of course, applications already available for Windows 7 will work on Windows 8 as well, but only on devices built on x86 architecture. Windows RT computers will have access only to Metro apps.
The same as the platform, apps built specifically for Windows 8 are meant to offer a fast and fluid experience to all users. The OS offers support for a variety of input solutions, including touch and keyboard and mouse, which should expand users’ options when it comes to apps.
In this regard, the company showcased a paint app in Windows 8, which could be easily used with a pen, and which offered a great experience when in full screen, as users could take advantage of the entire display for drawing or painting.
But there's more to it, as Metro apps offer support for the cloud, while also being capable of proving essential for communication and entertainment and to keep users always connected to the services they need.
Clearly, the Redmond-based software giant is more than confident that the Metro UI will appeal to users, especially on mobile devices, even if many still argue that Windows 7 remains a better choice.
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