In recent weeks, more and more details have been emerging in relation to Microsoft’s first major Windows 8 update known as Windows Blue. Though, with the recent influx of rumors, many are beginning to wonder what Microsoft might include inside of the next edition of the Windows family, Windows 9. The release of Windows 9 will be a critical milestone for Microsoft as they try to improve upon the negative public perception they received following the release of Windows 8.
While no operating system will ever be perfect, Windows 9 has the potential to be a very solid, competitive OS. However, there are a few specific changes that I believe should be implemented into Windows 9 if Microsoft is to win back the customers that they lost last October.
Keep the Modern UI and the Desktop Separate
In the past, Microsoft has stated that they have every intention of keeping their touchscreen interface, otherwise known as the Modern UI, inside of Windows. Although I am rather displeased by this decision, I find the interface, on its own, to be tolerable. However, inside of Windows 8, elements from the two interfaces are mashed together in such a way that it makes the operating system difficult to navigate. For example, clicking on the network icon in the taskbar reveals a large, obnoxiously intrusive box that contains a list of available networks. Not only is this an obvious design anomaly, it can cause confusion among those who may not be as skilled with technology. Users should be able to use the operating system without encountering an entirely different interface. Unless Microsoft plans to further enrage Windows fans, these two interfaces must be separated if Windows 9 is to be successful.
Revive Windows Media Center
Windows Media Center seems to be a dying piece of software. Ideally, it is to be used as a media-browsing interface for a home theater PC. While the idea behind Windows Media Center is solid, it could certainly benefit from further development. With a fresh design and improved support for multiple types of media such as games, movies, and T.V. shows, Windows Media Center could become a viable solution for those in search of a great couch-surfing interface or even a potential alternative to Steam’s Big Picture.
Searching inside of Windows 8 is not a pleasant experience. What should be an efficient method of finding a file, launching an app, or locating a setting, is a cumbersome, time-wasting chore. One particularly bothersome aspect of Windows 8’s search is the fact that the user is forced to navigate through search results via three separate tabs. I admire the fact that Microsoft is making an attempt to improve organization throughout the operating system, but it’s clear that they need to take a different approach.
The search interface inside of Windows 8 would be significantly easier to navigate if the categories of results were, for example, organized inside of columns rather than tabs.
Make the Modern UI More Configurable
Windows 8’s Modern UI is not necessarily known for its extensive amount of preferences. While the user is provided with a sufficient amount of basic options such as the ability to modify colors and change the design of the start screen background, I still feel as though the Modern UI is somewhat locked up.
While I’m not expecting anything excessive, the ability to add custom tile images and custom start screen backgrounds are two, reasonable examples of how the Modern UI could be more configurable and ultimately provide the user with a better, more personalized experience.
What would you like to see inside of Windows 9? Be sure to leave a comment below and let us know!