Tribe, which MS services or devices do you use, and and how will the new MS affect you?
The impending refresh of an entire company looms, with almost every major service being rethought, tweaked, and even re-branded. Not only are there going to be refreshed properties, there will be a first for Microsoft, a first party tablet offering. All in all, this is the year for Microsoft in terms of ambition. So I think this is a good time to sit back and think about each and every deivce and service you use that comes out of Redmond, and how their company shift will affect you. Here's some of what Microsoft will be offering and re branding:
- New Outlook. (Replaces hotmail.)
- New Microsoft logo. (Replaces the 25 year old slanted typeface for a four square logo.)
- Windows 8. (Replaces Windows 7.)
- Windows Phone 8. (Replaces Windows phone 7.5)
- Microsoft Surface RT.
- New Skydrive design. (Replaces the hotmail style web interface.)
- New Office.
- IE 10.
- Windows 8 Store.
- XBox Music. (Replaces Zune music and Zune pass.)
- Bing redesign
- Windows server 2012.
There is clearly a lot going on for the company, and they're betting big. That list doesn't even include next year, which will host the next Surface, Surface running on Intel, and supposedly, the next Xbox system.
So, what do use that comes from Microsoft, which ones are being refreshed for the better, and which do you think is a mistake. Here's what I use.
- Windows 7: I think Windows 8 for desktops is a major misstep, one that I fear Microsoft will learn the hard way about. The more I think about the new OS in terms of a major rethinking of computing, the more it doesn't make sense. On one hand, they are catering to the old windows users by making many elements familiar, like the desktop, and classic task manager. On the other, they are ushering in an exciting, fresh UI that rethinks how I use my computer, fast multitasking, beautiful apps, intuitive start screen. But why didn't they go all the way? Shoehorning old windows into something that prides itself in being innovative makes both products less than their full potential. How would I refresh windows? Simple, go all the way for windows 8, and ONLY make it available for tablets. I am talking about no desktop, a new way to kill and manage apps, no desktop apps, and a full mobile ecosystem. Instead, Microsoft wants to water down their innovation by pleasing the traditional user. Change is going to happen, no matter what, so traditonal windows users should learn the tricks of mobile computing now, not 'next time.' That is, if Windows 9 doesn't have a desktop.
- Zune: I never liked the name Zune, but I always like the devices and software, many of my friends actually owned Zune hardware, so when I heard jokes about the squirting music to other Zunes being the most useless feature due to no one using Zunes, I was confused. I still use the software, part due to me owning a windows phone (for now), and part due to it's fast podcast fetching. But it seems this particular refresh will be aesthetic and branding, which I am all for, that was the only thing holding Zune back as far as I am concerned.
- Windows phone 7.5: I bought my HTC Radar 4g just before Christmas last year. I was sick of android, sick of it's freezing and pitifully ugly app design put nexts to iOS and Windows phone. I wasn't sure about how clean the start screen was, but after using the device for a few months, I got the appeal. beautifully minimalist. I started to see where other OS were lacking in terms of presentation and colors, wp is one of the most radical OS changes I have experienced, and honestly, I think all modern interfaces will be borrowing from the ideas in this UI for many years. BUT, I got a Nexus 7 over the weekend. From the time I owned the HTC G2, I thought android was slow, ugly, built poorly for the respective hardware, and uninspired. The nexus 7 and Jellybean have forced me to reconsider android as a whole. The entire reason I went to windows phone is because of it's app layout, live tiles and clean UI, aside from live tiles, android has it now. Paired with Microsoft's insane ability to kill hype with Windows phone 8, keep secrets until practically it's launch, and not prove it's worth for app selection, I am going to wait for the new nexus. Windows phone's refresh actually made me rethink why I bought into the platform at all, not get me excited for the next thing.
So how will the new Microsoft affect you, for good or not so much?