Windows Blue build with minor improvements leaks
Rumors about Microsoft's strategy for the next version of Windows was all we had until recently. Some job postings highlighted that Microsoft is working on Windows 9 and Windows Blue. From the meager information that we have, it looks as if Windows Blue will be an update to Windows 8 while Windows 9 will be the next operating system the company plans to release. As always, Windows 9 is only a codename used during development. While it is unlikely that Microsoft will change the name, it is in the realm of possibility that the company will nevertheless.
Various Internet sites and forums indicate that a build of Windows Blue leaked on the Internet. If you have expected major changes in Windows Blue you will probably be disappointed as it seems to offer only gradual improvements over Windows 8. While it is too early to say if it will be an update - like a service pack with additional features - for Windows 8 or introduce major changes to Windows 8 that are implemented into later builds, it is clear for now at least that users should not expect too much from it.
A video was released on YouTube a couple of hours ago that walks you through Windows Blue build 9364.
The first thing that you will notice is that there is no start menu, and that the start screen is still there. If you had hopes that Microsoft would somehow reconsider some of its decisions that it made for Windows 8 you will certainly be disappointed by this. So what is new in Windows Blue?
- Ships with Internet Explorer 11, the next installment of Microsoft's web browser.
- Additional personalization options for the start screen. Direct access to personalization, more colors mostly
- SkyDrive integration into the Start Screen control panel including Device backup option which can be configured to automatically backup OS settings and app data.
- New Sync feature under Accounts, currently not implemented and not clear what it will do.
- Additional privacy options, including webcam, microphone and custom peripherals listings that detail which apps are allowed to use them. With option to disallow the use.
- Apps can now be displayed in a 50/50 ratio on the screen next to each other instead of the current option to display them in a 1/3 to 2/3 ratio on the screen. Also options to display more than two apps on the screen at the same time including three or four with them sharing the screen equally.
- Different live tile sizes on the start screen. The new size that you can see in the videos is small, which lets you add more tiles to the visible area of the start screen. That's good I guess.
Many of the changes make sense and users of the operating system will likely welcome them with open arms. Critics of Windows 8 on the other hand won't be convinced by the changes to give the operating system a(nother) try as the current build is not changing any of the major points of criticism.
What's your take on the changes introduced in Windows Blue so far?Advertisement