12 Things IT Will Hate About Microsoft Windows 8

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Piles Of Tiles

If you've seen Windows Phone 7, you're familiar with Metro, Microsoft's blocky environment for navigating features and launching apps. While Microsoft fanboys might opine on YouTube about how Windows 8 looks like it was "built by Mac," to my eyes Metro bears little resemblance to Apple's Mac OS X or Finder. A better parallel might be that the companies are building UI parity between desktop/laptop products and handhelds. This is clearly Apple's direction and it appears to be Microsoft's.

But Metro is unlike prior Windows UIs. On installation, Windows 8 funnels major apps into color blocks (tiles), piling them randomly on and off the screen to the right (shown). We know they're there because some of the app icons are cleaved mid-tile. Is that the best Microsoft UI designers could do to convey more content? There is also a scroll bar, but would it have killed them to add a handle or an arrow? Apps not lucky enough to be "blocked" come up only when using the search tool. To its credit, Metro is better than Windows 7 at navigation on tablets, but the new UI is clumsy, and will generate lots of calls to the help desk. IT won't like that.

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