Windows 8 User Interface Revealed by Microsoft

Microsoft has for the first time revealed the user interface of Windows 8.

At the D9 Conference, Microsoft demonstrated the next generation of Windows, internally code-named “Windows 8,” for the first time. Microsoft revealed a number of details of the operating system’s new interface through a press release and to All Things Digital.

Windows 8 supports two types of applications; Classic desktop Windows apps and HTML5 web apps. The demonstration video (embedded below) shows the new user interface seamlessly interacting with legacy applications. Microsoft’s new start screen includes easy touch icons to allow users of touch based devices to easily navigate through the operating system.

HTML5 web apps taps into the native capabilities of the new operating system using standard JavaScript and HTML to deliver new kinds of experiences. These new apps are full-screen and touch-optimized, and they easily integrate with the capabilities of the new Windows 8 user interface.

Windows 8 User Interface

“We really did take a step back after Windows 7,” Sinofsky said to All Things Digital. “We were clearly influenced ourselves by phones.”

The user interface and new apps will work with or without a keyboard and mouse on a broad range of screen sizes and pixel densities, from small slates to laptops, desktops, all-in-ones, and even classroom-sized displays.

The press release confirms that Internet Explorer 10 will be the default browser and Windows 8 operating system will be fully compatible with “all Windows 7 logo PCs, software and peripherals.”

Microsoft summarized the main elements of Windows 8’s new user interface:

  • Fast launching of apps from a tile-based Start screen, which replaces the Windows Start menu with a customizable, scalable full-screen view of apps.
  • Live tiles with notifications, showing always up-to-date information from your apps.
  • Fluid, natural switching between running apps.
  • Convenient ability to snap and resize an app to the side of the screen, so you can really multitask using the capabilities of Windows.
  • Web-connected and Web-powered apps built using HTML5 and JavaScript that have access to the full power of the PC.
  • Fully touch-optimized browsing, with all the power of hardware-accelerated Internet Explorer 10.

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