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Windows 8.1 Update 1: Nadella's Challenge

Microsoft has a new CEO, but does it have a new Windows strategy? Here's what to expect from Windows 8.1 Update 1.
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Windows 8.1 Update 1 will allegedly make Live Tiles more palatable to mouse-and-keyboard users.
(Source: WZor)
Windows 8.1 Update 1 will allegedly make Live Tiles more palatable to mouse-and-keyboard users. (Source: WZor)

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User Rank: Strategist
2/10/2014 | 8:32:47 AM
Re: A day late
User Rank: Apprentice
2/10/2014 | 4:48:28 AM
UI Lacking cohesiveness
Windows 8 is undoubtedly designed for touch enabled PC hardware. However, its new User Interface (UI) is poorly designed and executed. No wonder, most users prefer Windows 7 over it. I am a Surface Pro user and I feel the live tile UI and the Desktop Environment lack cohesion. Personally, I feel extremely irritated with switching between the desktop and the live tile UI environment. Furthermore, having a different UI in its live tile environment is confusing, irregular, and unfamiliar.

Removing the Start Menu from the Desktop environment is a big fail. Something which was working perfectly well should not be abandoned because the UX Designer wants something new.

Perhaps the new update might bring the much needed cohesiveness presently lacking in the existing User Experience. 
User Rank: Ninja
2/9/2014 | 9:24:56 PM
When you start near the top, it's really hard to improve!
I think Microsoft's biggest problem is that Windows itself is too hard to beat. They've created THE World Standard, and everybody else has been copying their "look and feel" for decades now. There really is scant room for improvement, and there won't be until some unimagined technological breakthrough occurs or somehow there is an equally monumental change in how we work. Until then, it's just planned obsolescence, and Redmond isn't Detroit; they are just too fundamentally honest to make that sort of thing work.




User Rank: Apprentice
2/8/2014 | 4:55:30 PM
Overcoming the Start menu issue
I have not had extensive experience yet with Windows 8, but will be installing it on my mother's computer soon.

One of the complaints I've heard well articulated before is that replacing the "Start" functionality with the tile interface is rather jarring and particularly removes you from your context.  It seems that the doorway effect - walking through a doorway and forgetting why you entered - may be kicking in here.

To help users not lose their context, why not make the tile background translucent when invoked from the keyboard or mouse?  This could help make it feel like a not-entirely-other world than the old desktop world.
User Rank: Ninja
2/8/2014 | 2:11:39 PM
The squeaky wheel is getting greased
As it should be.  One of the things that annoyed me about MS under Steve Ballmer was the brazen attempts to dictate to the market and make life difficult for perceived enemies without regard to the wants and needs of customers (the people who pay), which should come before all else (investors and employees are paid out of what customers provide).  One of the things I'm hoping for from Satya Nadella is a commitment to put customers (especially end users) first.  I'd like to see a quick end to the monopoly games too, but customer-centrism is both more important (a customer-centric monopolist is a lot more tolerable than a stockholder/executive-centric one could possibly be) and more easily achieved in the short term.

i've no objection to frequent releases, but Mozilla's recent practice of a major release a couple of times a year is ridiculous.  If MS wants to use the quick release model, then there should be a major release once every few years and minor releases every few months.  So Windows might well get up to 8.99 before Windows 9 comes out, but under no circumstances do I want to see Windows 100 in my lifetime.  Major releases should mean something instead of being a mere marketing ploy.


User Rank: Ninja
2/8/2014 | 10:37:48 AM
Re: Back tracking Microsoft?
Exactly! I was on the beta test forums and the top complaints were Metro and the lack of a start menu plus the lack of hardware support for not that old and not that unusual equipment. Why even have a beta phase when the major complaints of the majority of users are arrogantly ignored? Microsoft got what they deserved, but they should have been hit much harder on that.
User Rank: Apprentice
2/8/2014 | 10:08:48 AM
A day late
...and a dollar short from a company whose motto ought to be "where quality and usability are Job 1.1, SP3".
User Rank: Strategist
2/8/2014 | 9:45:18 AM
Back tracking Microsoft?
So Microsoft is back tracking on Windows 8 given all the backlash and weak PC sales. Go figure, does not take much of a CEO to realize you have to satify your customers. Could have saved themselves some lost sales to listen to beta testers feedback on Windows 8 in the first place.
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