Flat design has become extremely popular since the release of Windows 8, but I cannot find as many examples of it on the desktop as I do on the web and mobile apps. By desktop examples I mean Windows 7/Vista/XP visual styles, Gtk/QT themes and Linux desktops. I don't think there are as many applications which use principles of flat design either.

Is there any reason, maybe even UX-wise, for the unpopularity of flat design on the desktop?

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    1) what is your question? You mention a question in your title but not in the body. 2) Didn't you ask this before and it was closed because it was opinion based? 3) As @Yisela pointed out in the other comment please review our help Center for the proper format on how to ask a question. 3) your question also still seems opinion based. Please edit it and ask a question. – DᴀʀᴛʜVᴀᴅᴇʀ Aug 14 '13 at 17:39
  • It's because Windows 8 isn't all that popular on the desktop. That and mobile UI tends to get updated at a much faster pace than the legacy desktop OSes. – DA01 Aug 14 '13 at 17:51
  • (example, many/most people will have a phone with an OS less than 2 years old yet may still be running XP on the desktop) – DA01 Aug 14 '13 at 17:52
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    @Matt_2.0 no it isn't the same question, see my edit – Xylon Aug 14 '13 at 18:36
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    @Matt_2.0 maybe you could give an example then of an app outside of the MS eco-system which uses Flat design? Or compare the nunber of these flat apps to the number of skeuomorphic, gradient filled ones? That would be good enough evidence to disprove my unpopularity "opinion" – Xylon Aug 14 '13 at 19:17

Flat design is a relatively new trend (at least in popularity) and as such it's not going to be as widespread. for the most part, updating a website's visual usually consists of simply changing the CSS Stylesheet whereas when working with a desktop application, changing the interface and colors is a little bit more involved. Plus, you then need to push an update to your users and all in all it's just more of a cumbersome process than doing it on the web. I'd also argue that desktop applications are ever so slowly becoming less relevant -- most new products are now being developed on the web.

Though that doesn't mean we don't see flat design applications. of course, anything by Microsoft is being converted over to this flat design (i.e Office), they even took it as far as flattening their own logo. The Adobe sweet while maybe no completely flat, has certainly taken steps in the past few versions to be more flat.

Flat design is also mobile friendly, if you're working with buttons and they are flat they can be easier to read on a small screen as opposed to some crazy gradients.

Of course these are just my opinions and there's probably someone more qualified than I to speak on this.

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