Microsoft appears to be planning on overhauling its Windows 10 icons alongside its Office suite. The software giant revealed a new icon design for Office 365 earlier this week, and with it teased some Windows changes it has been considering. “It is a huge undertaking to build a common system and design 10 icons at the same time,” explains Jon Friedman, head of Office design at Microsoft. “Now that we have established the system we will start to scale it across all of Microsoft.”
Friedman also revealed, as spotted by Thurrott, that this Office effort is just “the beginning of a cross-company effort to update all icons in the same style.” An early glimpse at just how Windows 10 might be updated was teased as part of Friedman’s blog post. It includes Windows 10 concept images that have updated modern icons for photos, news, mail, and many other built-in apps. The Verge understands these images are simply mockups for now, but that Microsoft is looking at modernizing Windows 10 icons in the long-term.
Windows 10 still includes icons in some parts of the operating system that have existed for more than 10 years. These older icons look very out of place if you ever come across them, despite Microsoft’s efforts to modernize its Windows design and in particular the way you configure settings in the operating system. Microsoft has had numerous design efforts over the years for Windows, but now that the company is focused on a broad single icon design across the entire company it could be what’s needed to finally clear up some ancient examples.