Posted by : Muhammad Waseem Saturday, October 15, 2011



Microsoft and Apple are the developers of three of the most popular operating systems in the world (Windows, iOS & Mac OS X), yet their approaches to building the infrastructure that powers laptops, tablets and phones couldn’t be more divergent.
Microsoft recently published a blog post that addressed specific issues that Windows 8 developer preview users had with the start screen.
The Windows 8 team specifically tackles the complaint that the new Windows 8 start screen, which uses the app-style metro interface, isn’t effective at organizing apps (it was originally organized alphabetically) and doesn’t display enough apps on one screen (it originally displayed about 20 apps). Microsoft dives deep into the UX issues of start menus, even calculating how many apps Windows 8 can theoretically fit onto one display at different monitor resolutions.
In the end though, Microsoft concluded that its users were right about the Windows 8 start menu and made two important changes to it as a result. First, it now supports folder-style organization of apps. Secondly, Microsoft is making the start screen denser, meaning that more apps will be visible on a single screen.

The Apple Approach to OS Development


Microsoft’s approach lies in stark contrast to Apple‘s approach to OS development. The notoriously secretive company doesn’t like unveiling products until they are polished. It doesn’t publish detailed stats about how people are using its products. And it rarely makes dramatic changes based on user feedback.
It’s an approach that has worked just fine for Apple (more than fine, in fact). Steve Jobs and his team have been able to develop products and features that users wanted long before users they even knew they wanted them.
“It’s really hard to design products by focus groups,” Steve Jobs told BusinessWeek in 1998. “A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”
This is why you won’t find an Apple blog that details user behavior in iOS. This is why Apple only gives developers a few months to play with new versions of Mac OS X before they get released to the public, while Microsoft will release a new version of Windows to developers more than a year before its official debut.
Both companies are wildly successful with their operating systems. Windows is still the world’s most popular OS, while Apple keeps selling iPhone and iPads by the millions. But we’re about to see what happens when these two opposing philosophies to development butt heads. Microsoft is preparing for war against the iPad, and Windows 8 is its weapon of choice.
Will Microsoft’s philosophy to development trump Apple’s approach? We don’t know the answer to that question yet, but we do know that the fireworks are just getting started.
Check out the galleries below if you want to do a side-by-side comparison of Apple and Microsoft’s approaches to building an OS. Let us know which philosophy you prefer in the comments.

Gallery: Windows 8


Gallery: iOS 5

New Home Screen With Notification
Notifications are a big deal in iOS 5. Taking some cues from Android, iOS has finally unified the notification system and made it less clumsy and intrusive.
Message now appear at the top of the screen (though you can choose to allow them to display in the middle) while you are using the phone and they don't interrupt what you are already doing.

Lock Screen Notifications
On the lock screen, notifications are displayed in the middle of the screen. These messages can build up over time, for easy access to various message.

Notification Bar
The notification bar is accessible by pulling down the top of the phone. By default, your weather widget and stock ticker populate the space, along with any recent notifications.
The weather and stock ticker take information from those built-in apps on the phone. You can choose to turn this feature on or off. Weather is especially nice for finding out current conditions and getting a 5-day forecast.

Notification Bar Landscape
In landscape mode, notifications work just as they do in portrait. You can choose what apps are allowed to use the notification area on an app by app basis in Settings.

Customize Notifications
You can choose how to display notifications within each app's section in Settings under Notifications.
You can also choose how many recent items to display. As you can see, if you get a text message while taking a screenshot or browsing settings, it now alerts you at the top of the screen.

Facebook Notifications
Facebook isn't built-into iOS 5 but the new app has lots of options for customizing how you are notified about events, messages or follows.

Standard Notifications Screen
A full notifications screen.

Weather Options
The Weather and Stock widgets can be turned on and off.

iMessage Settings
You can choose to associate an AppleID email address with iMessage. If you want to use a different email but don't want to create a new AppleID, you can add the email at Apple.com.

iMessage Caller ID Settings
You can now set your email or your cell phone number as the Caller ID settings within iMessage.

iMessage Colors
The "send" button in iMessage is blue. It's now green when sending a regular SMS.

SMS Message Colors
The "send" button in iMessage is blue. It's now green when sending a regular SMS.

iMessage Photo Message
Attaching a photo to iMessage works just like it does in the SMS app. You can also directly send a photo to another person from the Photo app or after taking a picture with the camera.

Twitter Settings
Twitter now has its own place in the Settings screen. From here, you can install the app and update your account information.

Twitter Configuration
Twitter can now better integrate itself with your Address Book. Twitter can scan the name, email addresses and phone numbers you have on file and compare them with what users have used with Twitter.
If it finds a match, avatar photos and Twitter handles are updated within the Address Book.

Twitter Configuration
You can add multiple Twitter accounts to your device and specify what account is default. You can also adjust notifications on an account-by-account basis.

Send a Tweet
You can send tweets from the main application or from Safari, Photos, Maps and YouTube.

Twitter Identifier
Messages sent from iOS 5 say "Safari on iOS" in the identifier.

Camera Button on Lock Screen
Double tapping on the home screen button will launch display both the music player and the new camera button.
Tap on the camera button to take a photo without unlocking your phone.

Photos
The Photos app might look the same but it has some great new editing tools.
Tapping on "Edit" now brings up a new wave of options that include Auto-Enhance, Red Eye, Crop and Rotate.

Auto-Enhance
Auto-Enhance is supposed to auto-adjust a photo for better lighting and brightness. In our tests, the results were minimal to non-existent.

Crop Photo
Cropping a photo is as simple as moving your fingers around the area you want to focus in on.
You can also constrain your crop to a certain size or orientation.

Crop Photo
Cropping a photo is as simple as moving your fingers around the area you want to focus in on.
You can also constrain your crop to a certain size or orientation.

Save Edit
After making adjustments, your saved photo is available in your Camera Roll. The changes are NOT destructive, meaning you can go back later and change or remove a crop or adjustment.

Image Rotation
Image rotation is a tap. Literally.

Tweet or Message Photos
You can now send a photo to Twitter or to iMessage

iMessage Photo

iMessage Photo

Tweet Photo
You can add your location to a photo. Twitter will also search your contact list for someone's Twitter username.

Tweet Photo
You can add your location to a photo. Twitter will also search your contact list for someone's Twitter username.

Photo Locations

Reminders
Reminders is a new core iOS app. It makes creating to-do lists and reminders a snap. Like Notes and Calendar entries, it can be synced with iCloud/

Reminders
Completed items in Reminders.

Reminders
I cannot complete anything.

Reminders
Tap an item to check it off as "complete"

Reminders
I CAN complete things!

Reminders
View reminders by date. You can also set a due date and a location update to a reminder.

Reminders
Completions by date.

Safari
Safari for iOS 5 got a big overhaul on the backend. It looks the same for users, however.

Safari Reader Button
The nifty Readability-esque feature from Safari 5 for Mac and Windows is now in Mobile Safari.

Safari Reader Mode
The Reader mode strips away the default styling and makes reading articles much more palatable and distraction free.

Reading List
We won't call the Reading List an Instapaper-killer, but it is a similar idea.
You can add articles to a running "Reading List" that is accessible across devices. You can even sync your ist with Safari for Mac or Windows using iCloud.

Reading List Display
The Reading List makes it easy to access articles saved for reading earlier in your browsing section.

Private Browsing Mode
Mobile Safari now lets users browse the web in a private browsing mode. This means that traces of your activity are not stored on the device.

Private Browsing Mode View
The chrome around Mobile Safari is black when Private Browsing Mode is enabled.

Safari

Tweet a Link
Links or pages can be tweeted from the "Send to" menu.

Maps
You can now share a Map location with someone using Twitter or iMessage.

Maps
You can now share a Map location with someone using Twitter or iMessage.

Maps
In iMessage, the location comes up as something that is accessible by the other user in the Maps app on their iOS device.

Tweeting Maps
Locations can also be sent via Twitter or direct message.

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