Today, Microsoft finally unveiled Windows 8 to the public. I for one have to say this: Interesting.
A lot of people (including me) have been asking where was Microsoft’s tablet strategy. We all said that putting Windows 7 on a tablet was a sorry excuse for a touch oriented device especially in the age of the iPad and Android tablets. I have been very vocal about tablets in general (Rant). I of course have grown more accepting of them since that time.
Microsoft has to be given kudos have actually coming up with a very feasible tablet UI. Other people have said this just seems more like a skin. I disagree. All I can say that this is too early to make judgements.
Here’s a video on the new UI:
- It has a very Windows Phone 7 feel to it which is not a bad thing. It produces a nice experience and great transitions and seems to have a great feel to it. The use of multiple different touch keyboards is a nice welcome
- IE 10 designed for touch
Couple of questions left unanswered:
- When will this ship?
Microsoft made a mistake getting Windows Phone 7 out late and are now playing catch up. Don’t expect this to ship in the Fall but it better ship early in Spring because Android could only get better and Apple will be Apple.
- What happens to old programs? How will they transition to the new experience? Will they get left behind?
From the video, it seems that Microsoft Office has been untouched. Why not develop a touch oriented Microsoft Office? It begs the question: Why not build products like Microsoft Office from scratch to suit the touch interface? I seriously doubt people want to use touch when using the desktop version of Excel. If thats the case Microsoft wants to make for its future touch tablets, its flawed.
Or maybe thats down the line and will be shown in September at Microsoft’s developer conference. I for one really hope so.
The dual OS strategy is an interesting one. I like the option of using both a touch system as well as a mouse/keyboard system. Believe me, there’s no way I’m blogging with just a touch keyboard. That would take forever.
So Windows 8 was shown. Will developers be interested? Will some of the Windows Phone 7 apps make a transistion to the tablet version of Windows?
Hopefully, all these questions will be answered at Microsoft’s event: Microsoft Build.
These tablet wars are getting interesting. Can Microsoft pull this off? Will Android perfect itself to be ready for primetime without being buggy? and what will Apple do going forward. It should be interesting…..