Microsoft is currently planning to refresh its Windows 10 user interface elements in an update that will arrive later this year. The software giant will make more use of animations, and visual blurring elements from the Aero Glass era of Windows Vista and Windows 7 in what’s described internally as Project Neon.
Project NEON will heavily focus on animations, simplicity, and consistency – essentially bringing back Windows 7’s Aero Glass and mixing it up with animations like the ones from the Windows Phone 8/7 era.
Microsoft is introducing a new component called “Acrylic” to the Windows 10 design, which is essentially blurred in the background, sidebar or the navigation of the app. These are known as “Side-Nav Acrylic”, “Background Acrylic” and “In-App Acrylic” respectively – in the screenshot below we get to see the Side-Nav Acrylic:
Project Neon also focuses on Microsoft’s efforts with 3D and HoloLens, tweaking UI elements in places where you interact with a mouse pointer.
Microsoft will likely detail some of these design changes at its Build developers conference in May, just a month after it’s expected to release the Windows 10 Creators Update to existing users. Microsoft is planning another big update to Windows 10 later this year with these new design elements and support for ARM chipsets running full Windows 10 desktop apps.
Here is another look at redesigned Mail app