Microsoft’s many online and retail store brands are confusing to consumers. And it looks like they’re finally going to take the obvious step of fixing that, at least in Windows 10.
Of course, this is Microsoft, so this could just be yet another round of A/B testing.
Anyway, as many tech blogs have reported already, Microsoft has unveiled a new name and icon for the Windows Store in the Release Preview ring of the Windows Insider program. Now, the app is called Microsoft Store—the same name as its retail and online merchandise stores—and it sports a colorful new icon that resembles a 2D shopping bag. (The previous version was a goofy angled shopping bag that was stylistically dissimilar to other Windows 10 icons.)
Microsoft has long maintained multiple stores, and they usually have all had different names. But with Groove Music and Movies & TV pulled into Windows Store in Windows 10, and with the new Books store added as well, this store has been exceeded the bounds of “Windows” for a while: After all, much of this content works elsewhere too. (Further confusing, you can browse and buy Xbox One games from the Windows Store.)
Will Microsoft kill the Xbox Store brand as well? I hope so. This should all just be called Microsoft Store. And maybe this means we’ll see Microsoft hardware and non-Store app software products in the Windows Store now too. Sorry, I mean, in the Microsoft Store.
Which is, of course, the right name for this.