Metro Is Now Modern, Though Microsoft Says Nothing Has Changed

metro ui called modern

Microsoft confirms the new name for its Metro UI is called Modern, after a dispute with a German partner over the branding. Microsoft said Metro is a codename, and Modern was always destined for release for the tile-based user interface, despite references to the codename being made pre- and post-release to manufacturing.

Whether Metro or Modern, Microsoft wants you to know that its new UI is different

We didn’t quite take bets on what Microsoft’s new name for Metro could be, after a dispute with a German partner also using the Metro name. Microsoft unveiled the new name, anyway: Modern.

Microsoft would like us to believe Metro never was the final name for Windows 8, despite the company using the name in such volume the impression seemed to be Metro was final. Regardless, Modern is the new Metro and it probably should have been the name originally. It’s also what Metro represented when Microsoft unveiled the name: a sleek, Modern, and fast user interface.

The company has reportedly been forced to remove references to Metro from Windows 8, and perhaps from other platforms using the user interface including Windows Phone. A memo sent around the company revealed employees have to immediately stop mentioning Metro. I imagine Modern is fine, though.

While Microsoft is trying to convince us otherwise, it publicly admits Metro is being replaced. Mostly. Metro references are still available. Check the source link below. So it seems Microsoft is replacing Metro references past and present.

It’s Not What You Say: It’s How

I actually think Modern is a better name than Metro. The latter seemed abstract and did not resonate with consumers, while Modern is memorable. Window 8 as the overarching name of the user interface elements would have been better, I think. Confusing casual consumers isn’t advisable, especially when considering you have two versions of Windows 8 working simultaneously. I can imagine a situation where consumers call the the desktop side Windows 8, and the tile-based half Modern. That’s another issue for another day, though.

Ultimately Microsoft’s name choice is irrelevant. It’s how the operating system performs, and if consumers warm to Microsoft’s change in approach to design. It’ll be very interesting to see the types of consumers that don’t warm to Metro. Especially business.

Windows 8 releases October 26.

Published: Monday, August 13th, 2012 Last Modified: August 13, 2012

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