Windows 8.1 news

Now it’s not that far until Windows 8.1 is released as an update from the store, so I’ve been looking at some of the news in Windows 8.1. Here is some of the news that I think is worth mentioning.

  • Desktop background in Windows 8 view
    • This really makes the whole experience of the Windows 8 view a lot better i think. It does not feel like you are being redirected to another page any longer, more like the Windows 8 apps are fading in over the desktop.
    • Windows 8.1 background

      Windows 8.1 background

  • Start button on desktop
    • This is really nice for all people which are not used to computers or touch based systems. And it also makes the right click area for the ”start menu” bigger since you now can right click on the whole start button (before you had to right click in the bottom left corner)
    • Windows 8 desktop start button

      Windows 8 desktop start button


    • And while I’ve mentioned the right click function for the start button i can continue with that menu. A shut down option has been added to this menu, you no longer need to go to the right charm bar to shut down the computer.
  • New way to edit and group apps in the Windows 8 view.
    • In Windows 8 you had to tap and drag your finger down a bit to select an app in the Windows 8 view. Now in Windows 8.1 they have made it like it is in Windows Phone 8, a long tap on an app will select it for you and you will enter a edit mode. While in the edit mode you can select more apps by normal tapping on them. You can also select several apps and move them at the same time. And while in the edit mode a header will appear over all groups so you easily can edit the name of the groups.
  • New tile sizes
    • Large tiles – double the size in height of the old wide tiles and four times bigger than the normal tile.
    • Small tiles – fourth the size of a normal tile
    • With these new tile sizes you can personalize the Windows 8 view even more, which is really nice. Maybe you value the desktop a lot, then have a big tile for that one while you maybe don’t value the mail app that much but still want to be able to see if you have mails, then make it a very small tile.
  • More apps at the same time!
    • You can now have up to three apps open at the same time (Depending on your screen size)
    • The apps can have any size you want
    • You can have multiple instances of an app open at the same time, like 2 different Internet Explorer windows open at the same time.
    • You can have the Windows 8 view open while you work on the desktop!
  • Updated Windows Store
    • The Windows Store had a total makeover and is now a bit better. I like that they have moved the navigation to the top appbar. The app pages got an upgrade so more information are displayed about your app and you can see similar apps and apps made by the same person which is really nice if you find an app developer you like.
  • Boot to desktop
    • If you don’t like the windows 8 view or if you don’t use it that much then it’s really nice to be able to boot directly to the desktop!

If you want to read more i suggest reading everything here! I will get back soon with an similar update about the news in Visual Studio 2013 and the most interesting news for a Windows 8 Store App developer.