Microsoft’s Build 2016 developer conference is now less than a week away and, as usual, the March 30 San Francisco event promises intriguing insights into the Microsoft realm that are just as important for and-users as they are for the developer community. A quick look at this year’s schedule reveals that the US giant has some interesting new developments withing its signature Live Tiles interface to show off and discuss. And although, Microsoft intends to keep the announcements a surprise up until the April 1 event in question, everything seems to hints in one direction – Interactive Live Tiles in Windows 10.
The session is entitled « What’s New for Tiles and Toast Notifications » and has the following description:
Notifications are an essential tool for engaging with your customers on Windows. We are building on the foundation of Action Center to give developers greatly increased flexibility in Adaptive Toasts. We will introduce a powerful API that enables a new class of apps to plug into the Notification pipeline and provide innovative experiences for users. Live Tiles are evolving with two highly-requested surprises that you won’t want to miss.
The first part is pretty clear and seems to entail improvements to the Adaptive Toast notification API. The new features in this direction might also hide some interactive surprises, but the real cherry on the cake seem to be the pair of « highly-requested » Live Tiles features. The concept video below is a little outdated, but illustrates the interactivity idea quite well.
Honestly, we cant think of anything that fits the description better than interactive tiles. In fact, there are a few other facts to back this theory up. Do you, by any chance, remember the Nokia McLaren? It was an extensively rumored flagship prototype, that never saw the light of day. It first started frequenting the rumor mill back in 2014, around the time Windows Phone 8.1 became a thing. An alleged « Mixview » user interface was also part of the discussion and one aspect of it was said to be called « exploding Live Tiles ». It was described as something airily similar to Apple’s 3D touch – tapping the corner of a tile would pop out a bigger interactive interface. For instance, this would allow things like inline replying to messages or calendar entry editing.
Of course, this is all merely speculation at this point and more info should be available at the Build event itself.