What I think metro/modern apps should be called - Live apps
It’s a well known fact in the technology world that you shouldn’t call Windows 8 apps “metro-style apps” as they were called for a long time by both Microsoft and others. Thanks to being sued, though, alternatives have had to be thought up. Many have called them “modern” apps – even Steve Ballmer at bit at Build 2012 – though Microsoft says these are not the new name. And a final often used name is “start screen apps”. The official new name(s) are:
- Windows 8 style apps – I don’t like this because the apps usually run on Windows RT as well, so it’s misleading. Also, what happens when Windows 9 comes out?
- Windows Store apps – This is a little better because it isn’t operating system specific – it will still be relevant when future Windows versions arrive. But some formerly-known-as-metro-apps aren’t in the Windows Store though. Like IE10, which has a desktop version and a Windows Store version… but, wait, it’s not in the Store! So this name doesn’t work that well.
My suggestion is “Live apps”. This works because:
- The ‘Live’ name is known from Windows Live, now a dying brand. It follows a trend at Microsoft of using old, well-known names in new products, like with Outlook.com (the successor to Hotmail)
- The apps themselves are live and always up to date
- It links to Live Tiles, which these apps have
- It doesn’t have any of the problems the Microsoft suggested names have – it isn’t operating system specific and it is still relevant to apps that can’t be downloaded from the Windows Store.
The one trouble is that Microsoft is already using the name “Live apps” for Windows Phone 8 apps that can be pinned as live tiles. So the same name is unlikely to be implemented as the new name for metro apps, but at least it’s an idea.
What do you think?