Windows 8 will feature a full-Metro mode where it will not even load the desktop code.
Windows 8 will bring with a brand new UI concept called Metro. This concept was first shown in the video above, demonstrating the new, slick interface that's inspired by Microsoft's work on Windows Phone 7 and touch-based hardware. It's a radical addition that will prepare Windows 8 for a whole new generation of PCs and very non-PCs.
Microsoft's Windows President Steven Sinofsky took the opportunity to talk about the new Metro UI some more on the Building Windows 8 blog.
"By now you've seen two different elements of the Windows 8 design—first, a Metro style user interface we showed previously and in a video seen by millions of folks. And recently, we have described in this blog some of the enhancements we’re making to familiar Windows desktop tools such as Explorer and the copy file dialog," wrote Sinofsky.
In what should quell complaints of what Microsoft's shown for Windows 8, Sinofsky confirms that users will have the ultimate choice of interface.
We believe there is room for a more elegant, perhaps a more nuanced, approach. You get a beautiful, fast and fluid, Metro style interface and a huge variety of new apps to use. These applications have new attributes (a platform) that go well beyond the graphical styling (much to come on this at Build). As we showed, you get an amazing touch experience, and also one that works with mouse, trackpad, and keyboard. And if you want to stay permanently immersed in that Metro world, you will never see the desktop—we won’t even load it (literally the code will not be loaded) unless you explicitly choose to go there! This is Windows reimagined.
But if you do see value in the desktop experience—in precise control, in powerful windowing and file management, in compatibility with hundreds of thousands of existing programs and devices, in support of your business software, those capabilities are right at your fingertips as well. You don’t need to change to a different device if you want to edit photos or movies professionally, create documents for your job or school, manage a large corpus of media or data, or get done the infinite number of things people do with a PC today. And if you don’t want to do any of those “PC” things, then you don’t have to and you’re not paying for them in memory, battery life, or hardware requirements. If you do want or need this functionality, then you can switch to it with ease and fluidity because Windows is right there. Essentially, you can think of the Windows desktop as just another app.
Windows 8 brings together all the power and flexibility you have in your PC today with the ability to immerse yourself in a Metro style experience. You don’t have to compromise! You carry one device that does everything you want and need. You can connect that device to peripherals you want to use. You can use devices designed to dock to large screen displays and other peripherals. You can use convertible devices that can be both immersive tablets and flexible laptops.