If there is one thing that Windows Phones are known for, one thing that lies at the very core of their identity, it is the humble live tile. Debuted by Microsoft with Windows Phone 7, they have quickly proliferated in various guises throughout the company's services.
Despite the passage of time however, live tiles have remained essentially unchanged, that is until now. Last week, at Ignite, Microsoft revealed how live tiles will change, and what they will look like following the debut of Windows 10 for Phones when it ships later this year.
As might be expected, the purists among the Windows Phone fan-base have nothing to fear, in fact quite the opposite. As shown, instead of presenting a revolution in the whole experience, this is something more of an evolution.
Examples given include the likes of a calculator tile, which when selected would then expand into a full calculator option, that could be then folded back into the original tile when finished. The onus shifts from the mere display of information, to allowing you to interact with that information. Essentially, the concept of the 'widget' done right, baked in and without the frequent clumsiness that seems inherent to many other third-party options.
To see a little more below, head to 14:00.
As the Windows Phone experience shifts with the rest of Microsoft's ecosystem into the future, it is clear that what makes each separate platform unique and powerful is being maintained, while new advantages and features are being found through change.
At the moment, it is unclear what the full interpretation will become, what third-party take up of this option will be and, moreover, what the integration with 'Continuum' will be like when in desktop mode. Regardless, expect to see more about this as Windows 10 fast approaches, due for release later in the year.
What would be your best scenario usage of live tiles? Let us know in the comments below.