When Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said 2012 will be all about “Metro, Metro, Metro”, he probably did not realize that Microsoft would eventually be dropping the moniker from all their Windows 8 products. However, that is exactly what has happened
Bangalore, India: After months of marketing their new tile-based interface as “Metro”, Microsoft is giving a new name for its Windows 8 offering.
Ars Technica reported in early August that Microsoft sent out an internal memo banning the use of “Metro” in association with its products. This is following a legal notice from German company Metro AG, threatening them with legal action for infringing on their “Metro” trademarks. So what is Microsoft officially going to be calling its new-styled apps as?
According to the Microsoft office in Bangalore, they are now just calling it as “Windows UI”. So, does that mean months of marketing Windows 8 apps as “Metro” just goes down the drain? Similarly, while a lot of online publications are labeling the new office as “Office 2013”, Sukhvinder Ahuja, director of Unified Communications, Microsoft, told us that the official term for the new office suite is just “Office”.
However, there are going to be ramifications of this change due to the media conveying to consumers that the Windows 8 will have “metro-style” apps. Interestingly enough, there was another rumour recently that Microsoft would ban all apps with the word “Metro” in the title from the Windows 8 store. However, Microsoft has clarified that it will not do so unless contacted by third-parties for infringement concerns.
While “metro” is still being used in the developer guidelines to avoid confusion, it is quite certain that Windows 8 will be marketed and advertised to consumers with a different tag for the UI. While “Windows 8 apps” will be a safe bet for Microsoft as it's their own trademark, it does not have the same effect that a moniker like “Metro” creates.
According to Ars Technica, a spokesperson has said that “Metro-style” was just a code name during the development phase, and consumer dialog will be conducted with commercial names, which Microsoft has still not confirmed officially.
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