Does Windows 10 Mobile need a Taskbar (concept)?

by Surur
September 4, 2016

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We are often told by Microsoft how Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile are virtually the same OS, but there are a few UI paradigms which we find on Windows 10 which we do not find on Windows 10 Mobile at all, and with the increasing pressure to turn our smartphones into PCs it may be time for them to makethe move to the smaller form factor.

One such UI feature is the taskbar, present on Windows since Windows 95. In the days of Windows Phone 7, when all phones had hardware buttons, it did not make a lot of sense to have a task bar taking up screen space, but now, when all new devices have virtual buttons, there are already a UI element there, but one which looks very different from the desktop OS.

Eastern European designer Krum Cvetkov has put together his concept on what a taskbar should look like on Windows 10 Mobile, and it of course looks a lot like Windows 10, and makes better use of the space taken up by the taskbar (significant since our handsets are only getting larger and larger).

In the concept the left-aligned Start button would replace the central start button, the task view button would replace back press and hold for app switching, and the under-used search button would disappear. The back button has also disappeared, but I suspect this is an omission.

Like on the desktop the taskbar will have your most recently used apps, andusers will be able to pin apps to the task bar, and we assume concepts such as the jump list and other productivity features would also carry over.

In short, the UI we are used to on the desktop (sized large enough) would likely work perfectly well on mobile, particularly as our phones get bigger and bigger, and it would make it easier for users unfamiliar with Windows 10 Mobile to use handsets running the OS and reduce their learning curve.

Cvetkov has some other ideas, which can be seen at his Behance page here.

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