In September 13 blog post, Steven Sinofsky talked about experiencing Windows 8 touch on Windows 7 hardware. The post is authored by Grant George, corporate vice president for all of Windows test, and Jeff Piira, a test manager on our HIP team, — focuses on the touch interface aspects of PCs designed for Windows 7, which also work with Windows 8.
Sinfosky writes “Windows 8 is in a developer preview state now, but there is not yet a broad set of PC hardware upon which to experience some of the new, hardware-specific, aspects of Windows 8. Keeping the user experience at the top of the requirements, Windows 8 will kick off a new generation of computing devices, and it is only natural that touchscreen technologies will evolve with it.”
Of course Windows 8 is designed from the ground up to be an amazing upgrade (or clean install) for any PC that runs Windows 7. But we know many folks are anxious to try out some of the new scenarios and form factors that will also make Windows 8 shine.
“In Windows 8, we are taking the next step in adopting touch as a truly first-class input mechanism by evolving not only our UI, but many other platform elements as well,” writes Sinofsky.
Touch experience in Windows 8 includes (full hardware list is embedded below):
- “Panning and touch response are precise and smooth (we call this “stick to your finger” panning).
- Touch visualization is direct and immediate.
- Targeting UI with your fingers is seamless and confident.
- Typing on the screen is quick, efficient and responsive.
- Touch application experiences are consistent. Touching these applications will work the same regardless of the device they are run on,” noted Sinofsky.
He said that “We also test Windows 8 on a broader set of in-market systems. Touch quality is not only about the touchscreen and its relationship to the user. When we’re testing complete systems, things like bezel design, graphics, CPU and cover glass can impact the Windows 8 touch experience as well. We’re committed to supporting the hardware that is running with Windows 7 today and working hard to bring a good experience to our customers who upgrade.”
He noted that the company has used following Touch hardware to test Windows 8:
- HP Elitebook 2740p and 2760p convertible
- ASUS EP121 tablet
- Dell Inspiron Duo convertible
- Lenovo x201, x220t convertible
- 3M M2256PW 22″ display
Sinfosky gave example of some Windows 8 touch tests: “the first test covers new Windows 8 features that you access by swiping a finger in from the edges of the screen, like Search, Share, and Settings. To get the best experience when swiping in from the edge, touch must be responsive across the entire active screen starting at pixel 1 on each side, so we’ve developed tools to ensure that swipes are always properly detected at the edges of the screen.”
“To ensure a smooth panning experience, we have requirements for the latency of hardware response and panning with touch. We use a high-speed camera to measure input lag or delay between when a user touches the screen and when that action is reflected on the display. The less lag or separation between the user’s finger and the object being dragged the better!,” explains Sinofsky.
Sinofsky alos notes, that “We are confirming that we will be bringing Xbox LIVE to the PC with Xbox LIVE on Windows. We are very excited about Xbox LIVE coming to Windows 8. Xbox LIVE brings your games, music, movies, and TV shows to your favorite Microsoft and Windows devices.”
“Bringing Xbox LIVE to Windows 8 is part of our vision to bring you all the entertainment you want, shared with the people you care about, made easy. At BUILD we are showing that it is easy for developers to create games for Windows 8 that take advantage of the power of Xbox LIVE. We have much more detail to share about the capabilities of Xbox LIVE on Windows and look forward to the opportunity to do so in the near future,” said Sinofsky.
Below is a list of the devices we currently have in our test labs.
Acer Aspire 1420p (PDC)
Dell Studio 1747
Acer Aspire 1825PT
Dell Studio One
Acer Aspire 5738PG
Lenovo ThinkPad T410S
Acer Aspire Z5610
Lenovo ThinkPad X201T
Lenovo ThinkPad X220T
Fujitsu Lifebook T4310
HP Compaq L2105TM
NEC MultiSync LCD175M
ASUS EP 121
HP EliteBook 2740P
HP Mini 5102
Samsung Series 7 XE700T1A
Dell Inspiron 2305
Sony V J series
Dell Inspiron Duo
HP Pavillion DV3T-2000
Sony V L series
Dell Inspiron One 2305
HP Tablet 500
Dell Latitude E6420
HP TouchSmart 610
Dell Latitude XT
HP TouchSmart IQ500
HP TouchSmart TX2Z
Toshiba Sattellite Har/Kar