Windows 8 will be released tomorrow, and I got the chance to have a preview, testing it on a tablet Eee PC.
The metro interface is really a surprise and a remarkable difference from the traditional Windows interface. It resembles the graphic and interaction of a tablet or smart phone, but I assume that most computers don’t have a touch screen… so I don’t really see the advantage of having such big buttons. It seems a copy of the iphone/ipad interface, but it was copied poorly… a ‘samsung strategy’?!
Now, I would think that this interface is particularly suitable for tablet PCs with touch screen, like my Asus tablet. But… no! The metro interface doesn’t work on such netbooks because the minumum screen resolution is 1024 x 768 and most tablets PC have 1024 x 600, so you can’t use it!
Anyway, there are tricks to make it work if your computer has a smaller screen resolution.
In Windows 8 there is no start button, and you can’t really close the applications you opened, which seems kind of confusing. You have to pull out the menu from the right side of the screen toward the center. A few options will appear, including “option”, under which you find the buttons for switching off the computer and “start” which will take you to the metro interface.
The list of programs doesn’t exist anymore: you’ll find them in the metro interface, and you can re-arrange them as you like. This last option seems to make some sense. If you are missing the start button too much you can get it as an application, and get your computer to show the traditional desktop when it turns on.
Yet, since Microsoft made a considerable effort to create a completely new interface and a new interaction logic, I am not convinced that this one is really worth it. It would have been more useful to have a completely new “metaphor” – neither the desktop nor the big buttons – but for instance a new logic which groups items (docs, pics, emails, links) by theme rather than by application.
Thanks Diego for all the info and set up!