Microsoft appropriates Apple’s ‘brushed metal’ look for Office 12 for Windows

The September 2005 edition of Microsoft’s Professional Developers Conference got under way today with a keynote address by Bill Gates and a “live preview” of the next version of Office, according to a CNET report.

“With the next version of Office–currently dubbed Office 12–Microsoft plans to change the user interface to better fit the task a person is performing. The new look will apply to Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Access and parts of Outlook,” CNET reports.

“The first test version of Office 12 is due in fall 2005, and the finished product in the second half of 2006,” CNET reports.

More images here.

A Slashdot blurb states, “Bearing more than a passing resemblance to Aqua and brushed metal looks from Mac OS X the menus now appear to operate more like a tab popping-out the right toolbar instead of a sub-menu.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: There’s a reason why the Microsofties up in Redmond call Apple “R&D South.” Microsoft is perpetually behind the curve, as Apple has already moved on from brushed metal with their latest iTunes 5 for Windows interface.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Windows czar Allchin says Apple copying Microsoft’s Windows Longhorn – April 27, 2005
Microsoft employees leaving due to (and blogging about) malaise smothering company – April 25, 2005
eWEEK Editor Coursey: Longhorn so far ‘looks shockingly like a Macintosh’ – April 25, 2005
Due in late 2006, many of Windows Longhorn’s features have been in Mac OS X since 2001 – April 25, 2005
Microsoft’s new mantra: ‘It Just Works’ ripped straight from Apple’s ‘Switch’ campaign – April 22, 2005
Apple CEO Steve Jobs on Microsoft’s Longhorn: ‘They are shamelessly copying us’ – April 21, 2005
Microsoft’s Windows Longhorn will bear more than just a passing resemblance to Apple’s Mac OS X – April 15, 2005
Silicon Valley: Apple CEO Steve Jobs previews ‘Longhorn’ – June 29, 2004
PC Magazine: Microsoft ‘Longhorn’ preview shows ‘an Apple look’ – May 06, 2004
Microsoft concerned that Longhorn’s look and feel will be copied if revealed too soon – August 25, 2003
Windows ‘Longhorn’ to add translucent windows that ripple and shrink by 2005 – May 19, 2003

49 Comments

  1. Confirmation that it’s smart of Apple to phase out the brushed metal look. It’s gone from iTunes 5, hopefully more design updates will follow. I was never a big fan. And if MS thinks it’s cool, you know it’s passe by now.

  2. Aside from the standard “What a ripoff!!” there’s a little usability problem. The title bar blends into the menu. That makes the menus even harder to get with the mouse. OS X, of course, puts the menus at the top of the monitor so your mouse only has to worry about one axis of movement to find the right menu.

    This version of Office looks like they consulted the Mac BU. There are still a bewildering number of tools thrown on the tool bars. I guess Windows will always be the cluttered OS.

  3. From: Winston
    Confirmation that it’s smart of Apple to phase out the brushed metal look. It’s gone from iTunes 5, hopefully more design updates will follow. I was never a big fan. And if MS thinks it’s cool, you know it’s passe by now.

    From: Jamie Kelly
    I absolutely LOVE the new visual design in iTunes, you can see the refinement from the Version 4 look, brushed metal is so last year.

    The new look in office is not brushed metal (no brush marks) it is more like the new itunes look.

    http://pdc.xbetas.com.nyud.net:8090/?page=o12preview1

  4. That lot at Redmond have absolutely no shame.

    It’s obvious from this and new aqua, er, aero look for Windoze that they are trying to muddy the waters to confuse consumers.

    Come up with your own ideas for a change ya wankers! Didn’t your mothers teach you stealing and cheating is naughty?

  5. Check out the preview of the file menu:

    Of course they may change it, but it amuses me that they are using floppy disks for “Save”. When was the last time you used a floppy disk? I’m sure I haven’t touched one in at least a year.

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