Microsoft launches Metro-inspired website preview

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 28, 2012
Updated • Jun 28, 2012

Microsoft today has unveiled a new homepage preview that's been inspired by the company's all-or-nothing Metro-design approach. The old homepage gets still opened when you load the Microsoft website in a web browser of choice, with the new homepage only available on a preview location that you can access here.

I always found the old homepage to be messy, filled with links and really hard to navigate. While it offered a search at the top, it often took several attempts to find a specific product or page on the website that I was looking for.

Here is a screenshot of the current Microsoft homepage

old microsoft homepage

Take a look at the new homepage below

microsoft new homepage

What you immediately notice is that the new homepage uses a fluid design that dynamically changes the width of the content so that it fits exactly on the screen, and can be viewed optimally regardless of screen size or device used to access it. While you may need to scroll down more on smaller screens, you will get the same contents and layout on all devices that you use to open the website.

Fonts and elements have been increased on the new site, which makes the page even more accessible on devices with smaller screen resolutions.

The biggest chance for me is the removal of the "link-mess" on the homepage. It is now a lot easier to find what you are looking for on the website. The homepage is not the only page on the website that has been optimized. Take a look at the re-designed download center, which finally offers direct access to operating system specific downloads.

download center

When you click on an operating system link, you are taken to a page that highlights a selection of downloads for that system. If you click on Windows 7 for instance, you find the Service Pack and the compatibility center prominently displayed at the top, and below that a selection of top downloads that include desktop backgrounds, IE9, Windows Live applications or language packs for the operating system. At the very bottom is a link to the original download center where you find all available downloads.

windows7 downloads

I have to admit that I really like the new homepage design. It looks clear, crisp and modern. What's your take on the new homepage design?


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  1. jmjsquared said on June 30, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    Okay. You found the first error I’ve made ALL year but, you’re still an “MVP”.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm

      Unless there is a second meaning for the word, no I’m not ;)

      1. jmjsquared said on June 30, 2012 at 7:30 pm

        Okay, so how about this: I think you’re MVP caliber… no puns, double entendres, etc.
        Damn! You’re a difficult guy to compliment. Sheesh! :-)

      2. Martin Brinkmann said on June 30, 2012 at 7:48 pm

        I’m Internet hardened ;) Thanks then.

  2. Anonymous said on June 30, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    “I have to admit that…” is a heck of a way to begin talking favorably about a company that thinks your’re an MVP! It’s not a crime to like MS, you know.

    Microsoft —love ’em or hate ’em— is going to hit a homerun with Windows 8 and its Metrocious interface which will co-exist happily alongside the more familiar desktop they WILL make accessible with one click. Their new website design, along with Surface, IE10, Xbox 360, Window Phone 7, etc., is further evidence that The Big Dog intends to continue to lead the pack.

    ‘I have to admit that’ I hope they succeed.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 30, 2012 at 4:37 pm

      Mike is a MVP, I’m not.

    2. jmjsquared said on June 30, 2012 at 4:22 pm

      Yeah, I wrote the above.

  3. Threshold said on June 29, 2012 at 11:30 pm

    They can keep trying to shove their choices down users’ throat but it’s not going to work and they know it.

    I wonder what all the year long testing of their new os is for.
    Everybody hates metro and yet they keep pushing it.

    I agree the site looks much better than the real Metro which is damn awful.
    The colours are what I hate the most: they managed to pick the dullest nuances of each one.

  4. Anonymous said on June 29, 2012 at 3:06 pm

    Makes me think of those automated phone call systems where they give you a list of choices, none of which fit your needs, so you try best fit – which gives you another list, none of which fit your needs, so you try best fit – which gives you another . . . . At last a voice says, Thank you for your call. Goodbye.

    That’s what I have for Microsoft. Goodbye.

  5. Roman ShaRP said on June 28, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    I’m not MS faithful, so there is nothing special in it for me. It has Metro elements, – but on the other hand it looks not as bad as Metro in WP8 or Win8.

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