Windows’ new look is no longer ‘Metro’ as Microsoft sidesteps trademark issue

3 Aug 2012

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Start screens for Windows Phone 8 illustrate the now nameless layout

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Earlier this week, Microsoft employees were advised to immediately discontinue use of the name ‘Metro’ in reference to the colourful, tiled interface designed by Microsoft for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.

A source for The Verge revealed that a memo was circulated to Microsoft employees explaining that discussions with an important European partner had led to the decision. It is believed that it comes down to a trademark dispute over the name.

Developers have also been instructed to stop referring to ‘Metro’ in descriptions and documentation pertaining to their apps.

The graphic, typography-based design style is now nameless until Microsoft announces a new one, which is expected before the week is out. Until then it will be referred to as ‘Windows 8 style UI’ or ‘new user interface’.

Elaine Burke is managing editor of Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com