Microsoft explains the Windows 10 design for phones
Windows 10 for Phones is not yet ready
Microsoft revealed more details around the design work the company is currently doing on Windows 10 for Phones. The headline is ‘we are working to get the balance right’. Microsoft has been considering lots of UI and UX possibilities and users’ feedback before and after releasing two preview versions to Windows Insiders. The head of the Design team at Microsoft is now giving interesting details about some of the upcoming changes for Phones.
The main ambition of the team is to create a better Windows, an OS that can face the new challenges in a different environment. Windows 10 is all about mobility of experience. Users should be able to get similar, logical patterns and controls across the whole range of Windows devices. Microsoft wants the new UX to be adaptive and transform elegantly across different screen sizes. Redmond has been evaluating tons of different possibilities, trying out new patterns, controls, colors. The direction is now clear and what we are looking in the current Technical Preview for phones is just an early, unrefined, working variant of Windows 10. When ships later in 2015, Windows 10 will have the ambition to be the best Windows ever shipped… for both PC and mobile.
Here are some key design elements for which Microsoft reveal details of what is coming.
Hamburgers. This is the hottest topic around Windows users – half of the users love them, while many hate them. Microsoft’s explanation about bringing these menus to phones and PCs is that developers will have more possibilities to design apps suitable for touch and input devices tailoring the UX to each device. Hamburger menus are not required on apps with simple navigation controls and not so many options, so the menu can be inside pivots with swipe.
Outlook. The command bar will be moved to the bottom of the screen, as a result of the high level of dissatisfaction heard for Windows testers.
Mail. There will be a fly-out menu from the left accessed via a Hamburger button. From there you could move between folders and access app settings. Icons and controls will be at the bottom for easy access.
Calendar. Weeks and months view will be returning soon.
Microsoft Edge. The first version of Spartan (now Edge) browser had the address bar at the top. Microsoft is still considering repositioning the bar along with controls at the bottom.
People. The square images are staying, for now at least. Microsoft thinks that the decision to stick with circles is the right one, despite the feedback claiming the opposite.
Photos. The hamburger menu will be removed for phones, as it contains only a few elements. Instead, Windows phone will have the familiar switch between pictures and albums using pivots with swipe, and an action bar with icons at the bottom.
These are just part of the changes, as Microsoft promises that the final version of Windows 10 may not exactly look like these images, but still will be awesome.