In a new video Jensen Harris, of the Windows Users Experience team, shows you how the new Windows 8.1 Preview will look and feel. As such this video focuses on the surface of Windows and only looks at the Modern User Interface side of things. Yesterday we looked much more closely at the business and mobile productivity side of the new Windows.
You will see changes to your Windows system as soon as it’s booted up - starting from the lock screen which now doubles as a cloud powered photo frame and gallery. When you get to the Start Screen you will see straight away that there are more tile size choices, now you can really go large, with the new largest squares being double the previous largest rectangular tile size. Harris says the new larger tile may be useful and be capable of showing you your full days of calendar appointments for example.
The full list of apps on the PC, the ‘all apps screen’ has been improved with various sorting options. Harris also demonstrated multi-select and repositioning of groups of apps on the Start Screen. In addition the personalisation of the start screen, with many more colours now available, has been enhanced. The video also impressively demonstrates ‘motion accents’ – as you scroll around your start screen the background undulates beneath your tiles. You could choose this or remember, form a couple of weeks ago, we heard that you can use the same wallpaper as on your desktop if you like.
Next up in the video walkthrough Harris shows us the latest search functionality built into Windows 8.1 which brings together your PC content and web content in one place. The appearance of this search page looks pretty swish and the data consists of images, documents, information and action choices based upon the information found.
SkyDrive is being more tightly integrated, Harris says that “within every app on the PC I can see SkyDrive, which is the cloud, and This PC which are the files I just want to keep on this device”.
More multitasking – up to four panes
Harris went on to show the Windows 8.1 multitasking panes. In the mail app, looking at an email containing photos, he tapped on a photo, the PC automatically split the screen with the Photos app on one side of the screen and the mail app stayed on the left. He added “if I have a larger screen I can put two, three, even four apps on the screen at once.” To conclude Harris said that these are just a few of the new Windows 8.1 features and we can all try it out on 26th June.
Windows 8.1 update brings Outlook 2013 to Windows RT
Tami Reller, CFO and CMO of Microsoft's Windows Division, announced that Outlook 2013 RT will come as part of the free Windows 8.1 update for Windows RT users, at Computex yesterday. The official Microsoft blog said “We're pleased to have Outlook 2013 RT join the other best-in-class Office 2013 RT applications including Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote. And just like those applications, Outlook 2013 RT delivers a great touch experience for people using tablets.”