Talking tech since 2003

The news of Microsoft looking to unify the disparate Windows experiences in the future—along with reports of the “Threshold” initiative to do just that—has lots of folks speculating on what the future of Windows might look like. The fact that CEO Steve Ballmer is on the way out and the hunt for a new boss at Microsoft is an ongoing melodrama of its own doesn’t hurt the speculation game. And today, a post on BGR is pointing the way back to a Russian tech-blogger named Eldar Murtazin who claims that the next iteration of the Windows Phone OS won’t feature the tiled, Metro user interface that’s become ubiquitous throughout Microsoft’s platforms:

Moreover, Murtazin also claims that Windows RT will simply be folded into whatever form Windows Phone 9 takes, meaning that tablets and smartphones will simply run on the same OS:

Last, the post points to another Murtazin claim, though the source of this one I can’t quite find. According to the post, Murtazin says that the Windows Mobile experience might ape Android’s user interface. That’s interesting since, in a lot of ways, is already pretty reminiscent of Windows’ UI, anyway…at least to my eyes. And what that could mean for yesterday’s speculation of a Windows-styled, Android phone from Nokia and Microsoft is anybody’s guess. In short, I guess no one knows anything, except for when they do. Or something.

But let’s think about some of these claims—none of which are actually substantiated with evidence or sources, I should point out. The idea that Microsoft would ditch the Metro UI seems pretty plausible, especially if we believe the reports about forthcoming revisions to Windows 8 under Threshold—namely, the return of the Start Menu and the ability to run Metro apps through desktop mode. The fact that the previous sentence is that complicated shows how poorly Metro works within the established framework of Windows machines. Metro is a nice attempt at building a UI for touch-powered computing, but on the whole, it seems to have created more problems than solutions. That’s why updates to Windows 8 have been mostly about going back to missed features of Windows 7 and earlier versions of the OS.

So considering the low adoption rate of Windows Phone in its current incarnation, the general lack of interest in Metro as a UI in general, and the rumblings about unifying Windows into one type of OS…well, it seems as though Metro might in fact get ditched sooner rather than later.

Adios, Metro. Vaya con dios.

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