Hands-on with Windows Blue

Windows Blue leaked on the internet just yesterday. Since then, we've seen that new audio and productivity apps have been added, as well as new multitasking features and smaller tiles. In the video below, I go over some of the main new features in Windows Blue.

Personalisation

From the introduction of Windows 8, the 'Metro' interface has really been the central feature of the OS. Users have however complained that it doesn't offer the same customisation options as the equivalent on Windows Phone. In Windows Blue, this issue is fixed with the addition of new colour panels that allow you to pick different patterns, colours and accents for your Metro interface. 'Tiles' on the Start screen can also decreased in size, allowing you to create small grids of shortcuts for apps that don't take advantage of a live tile.

Multitasking

Previously in Windows 8, apps could be 'snapped' to either side of the display to run in tandem with another 3/4-sized app. Now in Windows Blue, two apps can occupy an equal amount of screen space. If you're using two screens, this of course is upped to four. Rearranging open applications and dragging them to the 'snappable' area feels much faster as well. A full write up of the new Metro apps available in Windows Blue is also available.

Internet Explorer 11

The newest iteration of the world's most popular web browser is, as rumoured, coming with Windows Blue. The update brings about "synced tabs" - an area where you can view tabs you have open on all your Windows 8 devices. The browser feels faster and more polished than on the RTM version, and this is mirrored throughout both the Metro and desktop versions of the browser. We have also seen that IE 11 appears as Mozilla's Firefox browser to avoid being blocked for its legacy CSS by certain sites.

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