Late yesterday, Microsoft lifted the veil off Windows 8, previewing a new user interface designed to bridge the gap between conventional PCs and touch-enabled devices like tablets. What does it look like? A whole lot like Windows Phone 7, as it turns out. The familiar live tiles are there, as is the Metro design language and touch-optimized interface. Behold:
The new start screen is where everything goes down. All apps are represented by tiles with dynamically updated content. Microsoft clearly aims to make its new OS touch-friendly, with large buttons having become the norm and apps taking up the whole screen. However, the company says you can use the tile interface with a keyboard and mouse, and Windows 8 also lets you load up the familiar, Windows 7-style desktop and Explorer file manager, so legacy applications will still be usable side-by-side with new ones.
Microsoft disclosed further details about Windows 8 during its Computex preview event. You can check out Engadget's live coverage here. Microsoft demonstrated a tablet and a "skinny laptop" based on Nvidia's Kal-El chip, and it talked about an "always on, always connected" mode that will allow ARM-powered Windows 8 tablets to wake up from sleep instantly.
In a way, Windows 8's new UI reminds me of the Windows Media Center overlay—essentially a specialized GUI layered atop the regular Windows desktop. It looks like Windows 8 will put the touch-friendly UI front and center, though. That certainly bodes well for tablets and touch-capable laptops, but I'm curious about the implications for us desktop users. Will windowed multitasking be slowly phased out?
|Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card reviewed||169|
|Color TV Day Shortbread||44|
|Oculus removes hardware check DRM from Rift exclusives||12|
|Only one month to go before the "second-10th" TR BBQ||7|
|Deals of the week: an affordable Core i7-6700K and gaming gear||19|
|3DMark is getting a full-featured DirectX 12 benchmark||29|
|Swim-a-Lap Day Shortbread||18|
|Steam Summer Picnic sale is all about tasty games||42|
|Corsair Vengeance LED DIMMs are serious about color coordination||22|