Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 operating system can sometimes feel a bit like two operating systems instead of one. There’s the desktop mode, which looks an awful lot like Windows 7. And there’s the Modern mode, which allows you to run full-screen, touch-friendly apps which you can download from the Windows Store.

But eventually you may be able to run those Windows Store apps in desktop mode which means you’ll be able to resize, move, or tile them just like classic Windows apps.

Windows 8.1 2014 Update

Microsoft is working on an updated version of Windows 8.1, and Russian blogger WZor has posted a few pictures showing a leaked, pre-release build of the software.

Among other things, the images show the Windows Store icon pinned to the Windows taskbar, and a new option to “Show Store apps on the taskbar,” indicating that you’ll be able to download apps from the Windows Store and run them in desktop mode in the future.

That should give users who aren’t particularly fond of the tablet-friendly “Modern” or “Metro” user interface in Windows 8 and later a reason to start exploring the Windows Store for apps. And if they find apps they like in desktop mode, maybe that’ll be a gateway for convincing them to start using the same apps in the Modern UI… which could help Microsoft fulfill its dream of making Windows 8 a viable alternative to Android and iOS for tablets and other touchscreen devices.

via The Verge

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11 replies on “Windows Store apps to run in desktop mode (eventually)”

  1. I hope they show more at Build. I feel they need to do a much better job at getting developers excited about Windows 8.

    For all we know that store icon in the task bar opens up the Modern UI in fullscreen…

    1. Perhaps you are right, but I believe the truth is a little different. I am confident that Microsoft could have added this feature from the start if they wanted to, but I believe their intentions were to try to “force” users to become familiar with the new “Modern” side of Windows 8. By letting users run “Modern” apps without requiring them to spend time in the “Modern” side of Windows 8, people would be able to get the benefits of “Modern” apps without ever becoming familiar/comfortable with the “Modern” side of Windows 8. I believe they are only adding this feature now out of desperation due to Windows 8 adoption being so much slower than they had hoped for. I believe many consumers underestimate the power they can yield if they can form a unified voice.
      Either way, I will welcome the change if it actually comes to be.

      1. I think the actual truth is closer to: Microsoft had to get Windows 8 released on time. Microsoft decided to cut back on features in order to get something working out.

        Possibly they cut back features based on hopes that Modern UI would be more successful than it turned out.

        Building software is extremely difficult and even if you have all the resources in the world you can’t just throw them at a project and build all the features you want.

        1. True, but I still feel very confident that if they really wanted to add that feature they would have at least made it a priority for Windows 8.1, but they didn’t seem to. How hard could it be? Stardock had a 3rd party solution in a rather short amount of time and who knows Windows better than Microsoft? They even went out of their way to eliminate the Start Menu in an effort to force users into the “Modern” side of Windows 8. To me, that is proof enough that Microsoft is set on making people use, and hopefully come to like, the new “Modern” side of Windows. I’m neither supporting nor condemning their decisions, simply calling it as I see it.

    2. I prefer features I want to be built in. I think it’s good to have OS companies integrate things I used to use 3rd party software for. Of course, when they integrate stuff I don’t want, it sucks.

          1. Windows 7 also won’t support the advance power saving features of new hardware, like you can now with Haswell and Bay Trail and Windows 8… Traditional desktop was never intended to be very power efficient or used on anything approaching a mobile device…

            So, no Connected Standby, No Fast Hybrid Start, and noticeably less battery life on average… among other things… Like Windows 8.1 has better multi-monitor support than Windows 7 does without needing 3rd party utilities…

            People just tend to focus too much on what they don’t like about Windows 8 and thus miss the fact it actually fixes a lot of the problems with Windows 7…

            Not to say there isn’t a lot of new things to that need fixing but it was never like Windows 7 was perfect to begin with either!

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