See How Microsoft Designed its New Windows 10 Icons

Microsoft has rolled out many new app icons in Windows 10 that are colourful and capable to provide a very unique look and feel to the operating system. The design team of Microsoft was working to innovate the icons for the last one year. The designers have redesigned more than 100 icons to provide them with a new colour, material and the best finishing. According to the corporate vice president of design and research at Microsoft, Jon Friedman the company was facing two major challenges on the creative front and the steps have been taken to address the creative challenges.

Jon Friedman said that the company to introduce the innovations and changes along with maintaining the familiarity for customers. He further said that that the major challenge regarding the designing of the icons was related to maintaining an open design system that has expanded to a range of contexts still being true to the traits of Microsoft. It has been revealed that most of the icons are just subtle modifications. Many of the icons were decades old and the designing team of Microsoft took some of them to simplify their designs. Among the several icons, the company choose monochrome icons for further simplification and later it designed the colourful tiles but could not grab the attention of app developers and the users of Windows 10.

However, the flat monochrome icons appear beautiful if we talk about it in the context of colourful tiles but the approach towards the icons required a must change. According to Christina Koehn, a design leader for devices and Windows at Microsoft, the different styles of icons appeared at the Start menu and in the taskbar often lead to creating more mental load to find and scan the applications. The designer feels the requirement of more inclusion of visuals and colours into the design of the icons with the use of modernized design language. Koehn further explained that the design team of Microsoft has successfully introduced many aspects and innovations in designing the icons along with introducing colour and depth to the iconography.

Meanwhile, the team has also maintained the familiarity of the icons for the users providing better user interface and satisfaction. The introduction of the additional cue has made it easier for the users to scan the apps at the Start menu or on the taskbar. Microsoft is further thinking over to introduce the icons with similar designs with help of its design language for all its apps across all the operating systems such as Android, macOS, iOS and Windows. The design team of Microsoft has explored a multitude of designs for the calculator icons and for many others. It will be interesting to witness the experiments of the designing team of Microsoft with icons and how the users are going to respond to the innovation.

Many newly designed icons are all already available for the users and further, the company is continuously rolling out the other icons too. The designs and innovations in the icons are encouraging and enticing too and the people are excited to use these newly designed icons.

Blair Lennon is a Microsoft Office expert and has been working in the technology industry since 2002. As a technical expert, she has written technical blogs, manuals, white papers, and reviews for many websites such as


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