For those of you who don’t know, I’m a big Microsoft fan. I use Hotmail, SkyDrive, Messenger, Windows 8, Office 2010 and more. But there are some things they really need to improve on, and today I’m looking at Hotmail’s themes. Here they are:
Current Hotmail theme selection
They’re not great. At all. As you can see from the screenshot, there’s a bunch of ‘static’ themes and a limited selection of themes that change from the weather. There’s one thing in common with all of them: they’re all kind of childish. And there’s no customisation within a theme – you can’t change the colour of the text, for example.
People have long asked for a Bing theme, which changes each day and is based on the Bing.com image of the day. But that’s never appeared. Same for requests about customising themes and adding your own. It’s basically rubbish.
Gmail, however, is very different. With the recent-ish new look update, they added a bunch of lovely HD themes. Now they’ve added custom themes, which let you upload your own photos. This is what us Hotmail users would love, but Microsoft simply haven’t listened.
But there is some hope. Microsoft is currently doing a re-design of all it’s Windows Live services, making them follow the metro design principles in all Microsoft’s products (Windows 8, Windows RT, Windows Phone and Xbox 360 all use metro) and removing the Windows Live branding. Here are some screenshots. Microsoft does have a chance to add HD themes. Admittedly, it’s unlikely because it won’t follow the metro design principles, but I really hope that Microsoft will take a look at Gmail and provide some nice themes.
On a side note, I think I may stop the mostly-weekly format of this blog – as I’ve started focusing on technology, waiting up to a week to write things doesn’t really work. So expect posts from me any time, and don’t be surprised if you don’t get one for a week now and then. :-)
On a second side note, if any of you have any good names for this blog other than a standard “doctorwhofan98′s blog” please let me know. Thanks.