Core Windows 8 Apps Get Updated Ahead of June Release Preview

Windows 8 Release Preview Changes Whats New

The Release Preview could give us a better indication of what the final OS will look like.

The Release Preview could be our final look at Windows 8 pre-launch, and Microsoft looks to be making changes ahead of that

I think it’s safe to say the Windows 8 Consumer Preview was well received – the majority of fans like it, the critics were positive – so there is a certain degree of anticipation towards the Release Preview, the next major build of Windows 8. Microsoft has been updating its core apps ahead of the new build’s release.

The updated apps have been spied in internal builds of the Release Preview, and aren’t labelled with the words app preview as in the Developer Preview. That could be an indication the apps are final, or at least near-final. Release is probably four months away, so Microsoft must have some idea of how programs/apps will look. The mid-way point of the year is reportedly when Microsoft was going to start meeting with OEMs to talk about launch strategy so, as I’ve mentioned before, I doubt there are going to be major changes from this point.

Criticisms towards Metro unfair?

The apps reportedly undergoing changes are Mail, Messenger, Calendar, Photos, Music and Reader. Remember, Microsoft is removing the Live branding from its apps so the names have been changed (though the Windows Live Calendar was pretty pointless, and I doubt the majority of people used it regularly).

I’ve always thought the design of apps among the Metro aesthetic was well done, though users have complained and even gone as far as to create mockups. I also think Metro is the most unique OS outside of iOS, instead of just allowing users to do more with an iOS-esque design.

Updates haven’t been issued for the Consumers Preview apps, though the app descriptions in Reader and Photos changed. The Photos app shows a full screen wallpaper, with tiles of images that can be browsed at the bottom.

I’m wondering whether Microsoft will stop the Consumer Preview from working, giving users a timeframe to download the Release Preview. I don’t see the point of supporting a build which is outdated, and basically redundant from the Release Preview forward. It doesn’t represent the latest Windows 8 build.

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Jonathan is a writer on the technology and video game industries. He is comfortable with using Mac OS X and Windows; he began using Windows with Windows XP during his early double-digit years, and started using OS X in 2009 on a MacBook Pro. He began gaming on the SNES back in the 90s.

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