Project Overview

Defining the vision for Windows 8 was challenging because of the fast moving environment we found ourselves in at the time. We were heading in a very different direction when product planning shifted gears and the Windows 8 MoSh (Modern Shell) was born as a new OS shell built for immersive touch experiences.

Partnering with 2 other designers, we set out to design a new Windows 8 Settings experience to highlight system and user information that is crucial to the user and provides useful at-a-glance information.

What I did

Cross-group collaboration  //  Concepting  //  Interaction design  //  Prototyping  //  Visual design  //  Icon design  //  Touch integration  //  User Research  //  Platform design  //  Visual storytelling

Windows 7 Desktop Control Panel

Before the release of Windows 8, this was the primary Settings related management surface in the operating system. Our goal for the PC Settings application was to create a new full screen touch-based immersive settings experience where the user can manage their settings in context with the Windows 8 modern shell experience.

PC Settings Application brainstorming

Important to the framing of a feature is the capturing of ideas and concepts using brainstorms, then evolving into affinity diagraming and the prioritization of results.

Windows 8 – system and app patterns

Early planning and vision for Windows 8 included a Modern app and system framework discovery phase, where patterns start to emerge.

PC Settings – early wireframe

Early Settings app design concepts utilized left hand navigation, a horizontal panning experience and settings pages that were designed to be modular tile like elements.

PC Settings – final iteration

As the design evolves, vertical scrolling is a more intuitive touch input mode and a two column layout that aligned with the direction of our partner apps.

Windows 8 PC Settings

Screenshot of the shipped view of Windows 8 PC Settings