It is no secret that Windows 8 has received many varying opinions. When you think of Windows 8 how does it make you feel? For many traditional users they feel that Windows new Metro interface shouldn’t take the place of their start menus and that forcing a tablet interface on desktop and laptop users isn’t the right approach at all.
Other users applaud Microsoft for doing something different and feel it was about time, after the interface of Windows has had that dramatic of revisions since the introduction of Windows 95. Yes, the interface has gotten prettier and more features have been tacked on, but has the interface really changed? Honestly, not really.
So why are opinions so varied? The biggest reason is that the PC user base has changed significantly over the years. Back in 1977 the only personal computer users were generally the very rich, very nerdy, or very business oriented.
Owning a PC was expensive and impractical during these times, and so the user type was pretty much the same: technical people. The 80s brought on cheaper machines like the Commodore 64 and started making the PC less of a toy for the rich, but again it still catered mostly to a crowd that was more technically inclined, educationally-inclined, or even graphic-loving gamers.
So where did the change really occur? The Internet began the mass evolution and websites like Facebook pushed this change even further. Today we have social users, power users, and pure tech nerds; just to name a few different types of users.
The one-size-fit all approach to the PC doesn’t really make as much sense as it might have once upon a time, and yet Microsoft feels this is the perfect time to unify its platform. Is this a bad idea? It really depends on who you ask. Many power users are traditionalists that have used PCs for decades and don’t want a change in the interface, others are bored and looking for something different.
No matter how you put it, Windows 8 is going to bring change. Should they allow Metro to be an option? Again, this is a maybe.
I am fairly mixed and feel that Metro will make enough changes to be accepted by most types of users. For those that just don’t fit into the social/mobile scene, Metro just might not be the best interface choice and hopefully Microsoft listens and allows a way to turn it off.
So what should you do if you really have a strong opinion about Windows 8? The best approach is to come up with a solid argument for why you don’t like a certain Windows 8 feature or think something should be added not just a “Metro just isn’t fun, or it sucks”.
Microsoft will listen, at least to a degree, especially if you provide a solid and thought-through reason. Redmond wants to create a product that will attract as many users as possible, and the more complaints they hear about a particular feature, the more likely they will revise it.
The important thing to keep in mind is that the Beta is drawing near and soon the time for listening will be over. Once they get close enough to a release they will only want to focus on optimizing what they have, not making big changes.
If you really have a strong opinion you should speak now, before it’s too late. So what do you think of Windows 8 and the Metro interface? Should Microsoft give users the option to disable it? Now is the time to speak, while Microsoft still is listening. Share your thoughts below!