Microsoft rolled out – in the last couple of weeks – the new web UI (formerly known as METRO UI) for Hotmail (now called Outlook), SkyDrive, Office Web Apps, People and Account. The rest of the Windows Live suite is probably also due to be updated soon.
The web UI is very similar to the one found on Windows 8 as I described in an earlier post. You can see the new tiles of each service in the cover photo of this post. But now let’s get straight to the web apps.
Outlook has an Office Outlook 2013 logo and the whole Hotmail experience has changed drastically. You feel as if you were in the modern UI of Windows 8 and not on a web page. The whole user experience is delightful and as a bonus the Facebook integration got even better because it resembles the Messenger App from Windows 8 very much.
Office Web Apps
The Office Web Apps are Microsoft’s alternative to Google Docs. I personally like the Web Apps – after the UI refresh – more than Google’s Documents because the resemblance with the on-premise installed Office suite is incredible. If you’ve tried the Office 2013 Customer Preview, you’ll know what I’m talking about! The UI is much cleaner and smoother, everything seems to be more tightly integrated and the best part: it works very well on Google Chrome, my browser of choice. 🙂
Word Web App
Excel Web App
PowerPoint Web App
SkyDrive has been around for a very long time now and during that time it has constantly improved itself. At first, the idea of files in the cloud, syncing them and so on has been implemented by Microsoft Live Mesh / Live Sync – a desktop service which enabled you to share folders throughout you own computers but also share them with your friends on Windows Live. Live Mesh / Live Sync has been somehow kept alive alongside SkyDrive, but now with the latest Windows Live Essentials Wave I think SkyDrive has become the new cloud and sharing app and service.
That’s all for now, I’ll leave you it up to you to discover the rest of Microsoft’s new Web Apps stack!