The Microsoft Windows 10 announcement is still ongoing, but one thing is standing out – Microsoft is finally, finally taking its own tools seriously. They showed a whole slew of new applications, and like Windows 10 being one single platform from phone through Xbox to PC, all of them are 100% universal. And, for the first time, these modern/Metro applications look like real, working, full-featured applications, instead of simple viewers or broken crap.
It goes very far: proper Metro Microsoft Office applications – Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook – that run on phones, tablets, and PCs, sharing their data automatically, and running the exact same code. Even their new browser – codenamed Spartan – is a universal application. It’s all looking really, really great, and based on the live stuff we’ve seen so far, it seems like Microsoft is actually pulling it off.
For the very first time, it finally feels like Win32 can go the way of the dodo. All these new applications are proper, grown-up applications that look like they can actually replace traditional Win32 ones. Even though Win32 applications are now properly integrated into Metro (they use the same gestures and stuff now), it feels like Microsoft is finally hitting the point where it can leave Win32 behind, and focus entirely on modern/Metro.
I was looking at the video on TheVerge of the Outlook metro app, and I hope we’ll still have a Win32 version to fall back on. Otherwise, I’m going to miss having the customizable ribbons, and all my mailbox folders in a nice, hierarchical structure. I think there should be the ability to add toolbars, right click menus, etc. when using metro apps on a desktop. Just because they’re making them available on phones and tablets (which they should) doesn’t mean they have to neuter them on PCs.