Uh oh. It looks like Microsoft has begun notifying developers that they should refrain from using the word “metro” to describe their applications regarding both Windows Phone and the Windows 8 interface. The suggested replacement is “New User Interface”, which has decidedly less cachet than metro. So what’s the reason for the dispute? Is Microsoft wanting to retain exclusive rights to the word metro for its own apps? Nope. According to an anonymous source as reported by The Verge, Microsoft is in a dispute with a German company over the term Metro.
Microsoft officials have confirmed that they’re dropping the “Metro style” descriptor and name, saying it was a code name for the unique UI all along. The company refused to comment if the move away from this branding is over a trademark dispute. This is sad news for what has really become an iconic definition of the UI, even if it was only meant to be used internally. What do you think of these changes? Should Microsoft fight to keep them?