Microsoft has opened the veil of secrecy over how the user interface and design of applications that are part of the company’s proprietary office suite will look in the future. Over the past two years, Microsoft Office has received many visual changes that simplify the process of interacting with office applications. Now it has become known that in the future Microsoft will continue to adhere to this principle, making Office even easier and more convenient.
“The next wave of changes in Microsoft 365 UX will go even further with the disappearance of brand colors from app titles and the introduction of responsive management. This allows users to move the simplified toolbar within the workspace to the place where they think it will be most useful.“Said Microsoft’s corporate vice president of design and research, Jon Friedman.
In addition, according to the available data, Microsoft will add support for adaptive commands in the future. Thus, the Ribbon UI will be replaced with a toolbar that can be dragged around the workspace. With its help, users will be able to perform different actions using context menus for this. Microsoft is currently only developing this interface, but some new design details may appear in Office within a year or two.
It was also noted that the ribbon interface originally originated on desktop computers. However, people are currently using different platforms and devices, so Microsoft intends to rethink how contextual commands should look in the future. If the dashboard tracks activities and suggests appropriate commands based on them, it can reduce cognitive load and the user can better focus on the task at hand.
It is unclear exactly when the updated user interface will be integrated into Microsoft products. Mr. Friedman noted that some changes can be integrated in the foreseeable future, while others are still under development. He also said Microsoft is “doing global research” to better understand how work needs are changing during a pandemic so that the company can guide software development accordingly.
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