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Puget: Windows 8 is not our fault, but we have to clean up after Microsoft's terrible UI decisions

By Jos
Mar 25, 2014
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  1. Puget has an interesting blog post today sharing some of its experience on how customers have reacted to Windows 8, the operating system's weak adoption, and what they're doing to ease the transition. As a custom system builder, the company...

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  2. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar TS Evangelist Posts: 6,477   +965

    Very interesting article indeed.
     
  3. theBest11778

    theBest11778 TS Addict Posts: 234   +67

    The ONLY way the Metro start menu would be useful is if it utilized all current programs (aka meaning no need to go in to desktop mode,) and I could sit on my couch with a wireless Xbox controller to navigate the whole thing. As well all know 99% of all applications run in desktop only mode, and surprise, you can't even navigate with an Xbox controller. For any sort of productivity/web browsing it makes no sense to use Metro as it's more efficient to jump through many windows in desktop mode. I however agree the performance improvements in Windows 8.1 over Windows 7 are significant enough for me to just click the desktop button at startup, or install classic shell. Easy solution is ditch metro and move on.
     
    psycros and wastedkill like this.
  4. treeski

    treeski TS Evangelist Posts: 962   +205


    I won't start arguing about metro (I do like it), but, in case you're interested, there is a program called Joy2Key. You can use it to make your Xbox controller emulate mouse movements/clicks/keypresses. It's a little tedious to set up (although you might be able to find a configuration someone else already put together), but it works quite well once done.
     
  5. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 1,631   +432

    Puget makes some really good points, but...
    Vista was out 6 years after XP, W7 2 years after that, and W8 3 years after that, so I wouldn't necessarily say the UI and the changes in Win8 are the main detractors. I would say Win8 came out too soon after W7, and the need for an upgrade just isn't there for the majority of users. Look at XP users. Of course that is speculation on my part, but it makes sense.

    The Metro UI is a fail for the masses, and I can only be glad that I can tweak W8 very easily so I never see that UI.

    -----
    Off topic about the new TS layout. There is no way to skip pages in a review. Instead you have to scroll to the bottom of every page to get to the next one. Please fix.
     
    Jad Chaar, spectrenad and treeski like this.
  6. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,154   +1,429

    I think it is not nice to be saying "Somebody screwed up and it wasn't us", and pointing fingers. If Puget wants to clean something up, it's their PR.
     
  7. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,323   +710

    Microsoft had a decision to make with mobile: for our curated experience do we come up with something that's familiar-looking but very limited in function, or make an entirely new UI paradigm? They chose the latter and it was the worst decision in the company's history. Change for change's sake will never sell. Apple succeeded with the iPhone because it was *better* than any touch system that had come before. You can't just throw something that's "sort of" like what people are used to and pray it sticks. Microsoft should have addressed all the complaints regarding iOS and exploited them. Instead they kept none of the positive aspects of existing UIs (Windows included) and switched to an inefficient, non-intuitive interface while ignoring all feedback from the average consumer. The entire industry has become dependent upon the Windows-Office refresh cycle and proceeded to go down with the SS Ballmer. IMHO there are only two possible salvation for Microsoft. The ideal one would be for Windows 9 to combine every truly great idea Microsoft ever had for user interface design. The start menu, with both fly-out and scrolling styles, quick launch, jump lists, the sidebar...all of it in one glorious, highly configurable desktop. Windows 9 themes should save every aspect of your UI, allowing you to instantly switch from a desktop to pure touch experience or anything in between. The runner-up solution would be for an open standard of shell modification to emerge that let's us create our own Windows experience. Get all of the bright minds from Classic Shell, Pokki, Stardock and the other guys together to settle on an app support layer for any UI replacements they create. If every third party shell enhancement or replacement displayed Metro apps the same way then Metro apps could become fully integrated into any UI supporting the standard. You'd see people creating custom UIs that were almost totally composed of Metro apps. Of course it would be much simpler if Microsoft simply allowed Metro apps to be run just like regular desktop programs (ala gadgets) or at least in a reserved desktop area - "Windows Sidebar 2", if you will.
     
  8. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,191   +590

    The only problem with Windows 8 was that they jumped the gun and alienated their Desktop people before things really got rolling. The OS itself is excellent and the Metro UI is not bad, but was pushed a bit to hard and without some of the basics desktop users are accustomed to it just made things all the more horrid for the desktop people to get used to.
     
    spectrenad likes this.
  9. Jos

    Jos TechSpot Staff Topic Starter Posts: 2,711   +87

    The article index is accessible to the right, you just need to hover it. See image attached.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 1,631   +432

    Thanks I see it now. It's not as obvious as past iterations, but once you know where it is, you're fine. I like that it stays visible on the page at all times.
     
  11. Sancticide

    Sancticide TS Enthusiast Posts: 44   +18

    If people aren't buying their systems because they come with Win 8.1, that's absolutely something they should be concerned about, and it's good to see that they're differentiating themselves from the other OEMs and give customers what they want out of the box. Who cares if MS is upset about it? Don't want to smell poop, don't crap the bed.
     
  12. TheBigFatClown

    TheBigFatClown TS Guru Posts: 647   +227

    "Vista was out 6 years after XP, W7 2 years after that, and W8 3 years after that, so I wouldn't necessarily say the UI and the changes in Win8 are the main detractors. I would say Win8 came out too soon after W7, and the need for an upgrade just isn't there for the majority of users. Look at XP users. Of course that is speculation on my part, but it makes sense.
    The Metro UI is a fail for the masses, and I can only be glad that I can tweak W8 very easily so I never see that UI."

    You wouldn't say that because your in a rabid denial similar to a drug addict who thinks he doesn't need help. The UI changes in Windows 8 are just about the *ONLY* reason I haven't touched the OS with a 100-ft pole. There are two reasons people buy new things. Out of need and out of pure want. I upgrade to Windows 7 out of pure want. There is no need. The author has it right in the article. "Microsoft underestimated the effect they (power users) can have on general public perception, starting with friends and family, and how novice users are often intimidated by change. As a result Puget is seeing worse adoption rates for Windows 8 than it saw with Windows Vista."

    Biting the hand that feeds you is pretty stupid. Thinking your too big to fail is pretty stupid also. I wonder what mindset Microsoft has right now as they approach the release of Windows 9. "Lets give the customer what the customer wants" maybe? Or "#DEALWITHIT. Were too big to fail!!! LoL".

    Windows 8. Dying the slowest most painful ****ing death that an operating system could possibly endure. Die already *****. Die!!!!
     
  13. m3tavision

    m3tavision TS Rookie

    I love My Surface and my NOkia phone, but when I am at my PC, I want a DESKTOP... that is the reason I own a computer. (PC = workspace/desktop)

    What frak'n ***** was allowed to design Windows 8 for the PC, with a touch-screen interface..? It is (literally) retarded thinking.!!

    Why did Microsoft spend a billion on a new UI that is targeted at upstart teenagers, just learning the digital world.. but not at the 35~65 year olds, who grew up with Windows, who own homes and their PCs... & simply want a more secure and more elegant desktop..?
     
  14. ibenzawla

    ibenzawla TS Rookie

    I have a Surface RT and a Lumia phone as well and just as you I really love both of them however to this day I find it really hard to use metro on my Asus notebook. What I do appreciate about Windows 8 though is its speed and efficiency which I base on my experience. Seems to run better in my notebook that came pre installed with Win 7. But again the idea of using a mouse to get around in something built for swiping is just plain stupid and unless they throw in the towel and come up with a better modification they will someday realize that Vista was a home run compared to Windows 8.
     
  15. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,500   +2,052

    Win 8 works and works well. It's just that ridiculous Metro interface that desktop users hate passionately, I'm one of them. I know it can be fixed quickly with 3rd party apps but that's not the point and I fully agree with Puget, they shouldn't have to clean up MS's mess.
     
  16. Darkshadoe

    Darkshadoe TS Guru Posts: 571   +112

    Microsoft could overtake Apple if they woulds learn two things:

    1. They need to stop coming out with a new OS every week. It was really too soon for Win8 and they are already trying to rush Win9.

    2. Stop with the forced upgrades. Why should I have to buy a whole new OS just to get the benefits of something like DirectX 12 or Media Center?

    Rather than wasting money on a new OS, they could be putting it to better use like developing new technology. It seems like Microsoft is always a "day late and a dollar short" when they try to play catch up to Apple because of a new product they have developed (Apple comes out with IPod then MS comes out with Zune, Apple comes out with IPad, MS tries to make up ground with Surface. ETC.)
     
  17. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,154   +1,429

    Note to you, Apple is still nowhere with the touch-screen support in Mac OS, while Windows 8 has had it since day one.

    It was the diversity of all the coming devices that forced MS's hand, to try and consolidate all platforms into one. It is one heck of an experiment, but a very much worthwhile. It was obvious to expect that they would screw up in many areas, because re-inventing the wheel isn't easy. The important thing is, at this point MS knows of all of its major flaws in Windows 8.1, and will have them all addressed in Windows 9.

    The main thing needed in Windows 9 is a fresh look at all the new high DPI screens that are coming out, and provide support for 4K and beyond, which includes many implications of how to scale third-party applications also, this is why it is a major issue worth a new Windows version.

    Comparing Apple vs MS is like apples versus oranges, the first one is limiting its product to a preset hardware, while the latter embraces the entire hardware market. From this point of view they are in different weight categories.
     
    dividebyzero likes this.
  18. Holotus

    Holotus TS Enthusiast Posts: 68   +9

    Ever since Steve Ballmer left I feel less claustrophobic thinking about Microsoft. Ballmers's ego got in the way and tried to make Windows 8 the most candy coated carnival OS to stand out. It was a cry of desperation from a desperate man. With the new CEO I think the next Windows will be a lot more tame, moderate, and professional looking. For once in my life I'm actually rooting for Microsoft now.
     
  19. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar TS Evangelist Posts: 6,477   +965

    Good point.
     
  20. Mbloof

    Mbloof TS Rookie Posts: 56   +7

    The main point here is the difference between "want" and "need".

    While I did not mind Vista and many of its features were lauded as "WIN7" improvements I only owned one box with Vista on it as I had no NEED for anything other than XP. By the time WIN7 came out a few of my XP boxes I considered EOL and while still functional I bought replacements with WIN7 (BTW: all three mentioned OS's can be configured to look/act like W2K).

    So WIN8 comes along. Big deal. If I were unhappy with how my WIN7 boxes performed I might consider the upgrade but that is simply not the case. WIN8 actually has some incompatibility issues with some applications I run so I have even more reason NOT to upgrade. Maybe in another 5yrs I'll have a need to replace one of my remaining XP or WIN7 boxes with whatever is available then.

    So the MS supporters say that all you need is some aftermarket programs and configuring +spend some money and you too can have something like what you already have with some empty promises of "runs better" that most of us (beyond the placebo effect) would never notice.

    Geeze, just because Ford releases a new model of "Mustang" every year does not mean that I need, want or desire to run out and get it.

    There are entire industries building up recycled computers. If MS and the big OEM's want people to rush out and get some new whizzbanged thing - it better have more going for it than the last 10yrs of offerings as there's nothing "new and exciting" you can do with the current offerings that you could not do with the HW/SW sold +10yrs ago.
     
  21. crabbos

    crabbos TS Rookie

    I've been using Windows 8.1 for about four months now and I've been quite pleased with it in general. The only thing that used to bother me was booting into Metro UI but after the initial click to get to the regular desktop it behaved pretty much exactly like Windows 7 (after changing a few default program settings).

    I installed Classic Shell about a month ago and it's absolutely brilliant. It's a tiny download and installs very quickly and has a whole bunch of configuration options available. I would recommend it to anyone.
     
  22. Xclusiveitalian

    Xclusiveitalian TS Evangelist Posts: 699   +58

    To put it simply, desktop users don't want to turn there computers into tablets.
     
  23. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,555   +2,898

    Neither should we as a do-it-yourself consumer!
    After Win8, how could it be anything but?
     
  24. Jibberish18

    Jibberish18 TS Guru Posts: 529   +36

    You know I almost never have a problem with newer versions of an OS. Liked Vista (The way it ran on my Macbook but ran terribly on lots of other hardware) LOVED Windows 7 (A truly proper upgrade to Win XP) and I really like Windows 8 and I love the Metro idea. I get to see all my weather and everything else that is important to me in one area and see it interactively (This is the idea at least) but where I think MS messed up is giving people the option to use either Desktop or Metro. I honestly think that they either should have made people choose on or the other before installing the OS or completely separate them depending on whether you're using touchscreen or not. I don't know. To me the Desktop portion completely screws me up no. Sure I can navigate it just fine but switching back and forth becomes cumbersome and unnecessary. Just my personal opinion.
     
  25. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,500   +2,052

    Agreed.
     

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