Er. Sorry. replace gnome-panel w/ gnome-shell. gnome-shell is the tablet lookalike, gnome-panel is the crippled gnome2 workalike.
I wrote before coffee.
And, yes, my SO who thought gnome-shell and unity looked new and shiny (and still does) is making an honest effort to use them, but is just finding them slow and frustrating to use. She finds gnome-shell pops up stuff that can't be dismissed that confuses her "I have to make a decision on how to open the iphone? Can't I just close this - oh no close button" or, after she's browsed to the DCIM dir, which she and my mom both prefer over photo managers, she found putting two shell windows side by side for drag and drop photo sorting to be much more complicated than in gnome2.
And getting to her favourite apps is not as handy. She was familiar with doing it just w/ 1 click to open the app menu, a bit of mouse wiggling and another to open the app. Now she has to scroll through large lists or type. She's not a fan of the workflow.
She's still a fan I think, but, yeah, might ask to go back to gnome2. For parent's idea that this is gnome1 vs gnome2. Eh. It really is a big shift from the desktop metaphor. Gnome 1 to gnome 2 was nothing like this.