Microsoft Office “15″ screenshots reveal Metro UI look and feel

By Tom Warren, on 14th Mar 11 8:13 am with 10 Comments

Office 15 Metro UI in Outlook

Microsoft’s next-generation of Office, codenamed “15″, will introduce a Metro UI look and feel.

The first Office 15 screenshots began to leak over the weekend and now additional Outlook screenshots have revealed that Microsoft is implementing a Metro UI across its next Office product. Winreview has posted scores of screenshots that detail all of Microsoft’s Office 15 applications. The screenshots are from Microsoft Office 15 Milestone 2 build 15.0.2703.1000. Microsoft appears to be considering implementing a Metro UI in its Office suite. In the Milestone 2 build, Outlook has been updated with the Metro UI at the foot of the application to provide simple switching between different functions. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access and OneNote do not contain the Metro UI yet.

Microsoft Office 15 - Outlook Metro UI

The screenshots also revealed a more flattened user interface within Outlook. Microsoft’s Outlook UI no longer seems cluttered and provides users with direct access to their mail in a simple and yet familiar way. Microsoft’s Metro design language is an internal code name for a typography-based design languages created and used by the company. Microsoft originally started using Metro in Media Center and showcased a full version in the company’s Zune products. Microsoft’s latest mobile operating system, Windows Phone 7, also features the Metro look and feel throughout. Microsoft has started to use the Metro UI on more of its web properties to produce a clean, fast and simple look.

It was recently revealed that Office 15 had reached the Milestone 2 phase of development. Office 15 screenshots began to appear over the weekend. Little is known about the new features included in Office 15 but WinRumors understands Microsoft is planning an improved meeting system and OWA enhancements for the next generation of Office. The company is seeking to employ an Outlook software development engineer at its corporate headquarters in Redmond, Washington. “We are now going to take OWA to the next level and build the next generation clients for desktop and the latest mobile and slate devices,” said a recent the job listing. “The next generation client will include world class messaging, contacts, calendaring and social collaboration for both enterprise and cloud, and will use the latest in web technology.”

ZDNets’ Mary Jo Foley recently attended a day-long “Future of Productivity” event for press and analysts on January 28. Microsoft Business Division President Kurt DelBene spent a brief period speaking about Offfice 15, the next generation of Microsoft Office. “We don’t think we’ve covered all the bases,” said DelBene.”We’re always looking for what new productivity experiences” customers want.” DelBene said that “new applications will join the Office family as a result.”

Foley speculates that a new “meeting” application may be on the short list for Office 15. DelBene said “We have a major investment around making meetings great.” He noted that Microsoft has done work on every phase of meetings — from Outlook invitations, to notetaking (with OneNote), to broadcasting (with some of the new features in PowerPoint 2010). “I could see those pieced together over time,” DelBene told attendees of the Future of Productivity event.

Microsoft is believed to be readying Office 15 for the 2012 time-frame.

Microsoft Office 15 - Outlook Metro UI

  • Vipul Taneja

    I like them all.. HB860 :) Thanx for those

  • Me

    I was expecting much more Metro integration than this – but it’s an early build so anything can change. The Metro interface would look great if used in the dock…

    • Me

      I mean ribbon, not dock

    • Christo27

      The thing is, Metro is designed for easy access for consumption while the ribbon is for creation. Outlook provides an interesting middle here, but with the amount of controls, I think ribbon wins out

    • Tom W

      Yeah this is only Milestone 2. It seems like they are simply playing around with using Metro UI elements in Office. Who knows if we’ll ever see it fully.

  • Chris Lindhartsen

    It’ll be interesting to see what happens in later builds. I’m reminded of the early Longhorn days, where they seemed to be experimenting in a lot of directions, though this is obviously further along than those early builds were.

  • Gho,Danny Wahyudi

    Why All Microsoft Leaks in Russian?
    There Must be a Spy at Microsoft…

  • Iuashduad

    I don’t see a thing of metro UI here… And those Windows 8 leaks is totally bullshit microsoft said they were creating windows all over again… so this Windows 7 like images or Aero lite thing is for sure not real!!!!!

  • Raphael Silva Gomes

    I really don’t like the ideia of using only text as a button, it’s confusing, manly from people who never played with such concept. Soon we’ll not know what is the email’s message text and what are the buttons… O.o

  • falcon

    office 15?? is it mean coming out in 2015? lol