Microsoft is the undisputed leader when it comes to desktop operating systems. Currently over 50% of all the PCs of the world run Windows 7, with Windows XP still being used on many, not to mention the millions of computers running Windows 8 and Windows 10. But when it comes to mobile, things look rather different: Microsoft has to make do with the third place on the global mobile market, with Android and iOS leading detached. But the Redmond Giant plans to change this all with its upcoming update, Windows 10 for mobile, which will become available to users this quarter.
If we take a look at the numbers, we’ll see that – although it is the third most used mobile OS in the world – Microsoft’s Windows Phone has a sore need for apps. Both iOS and Android offer way over a million apps in their stores, and Amazon’s app store also has over 400,000 Android apps to offer. Compared to these, the offer of the Windows Store is a measly 300,000, far from being enough. While it’s more open than the Play Store, allowing online casino apps to be listed, it’s still behind on the numbers. So, with Windows 10, Microsoft has decided to make an extra effort to attract more developers to its side.
First of all, there is the new concept called the Universal App. This will allow developers to create multiple interfaces for their apps to be used on devices with different form factors and input capabilities. The Windows 10 that runs on your PC is basically the same as the one will run on your Windows-powered phone or tablet. Creating an app for one will basically create an app that will run on any other, with the only changes needed to be made is to the interface.
Another way for Windows to attract more apps to its own app marketplace is through making it easy for developers to port their apps to Windows. To that end Microsoft has developed a series of bridges – tools that will help the app developers deploy their apps on the Universal Windows Platform much easier. The iOS bridge is functional, Microsoft sources have revealed, and a Win32 bridge is also in the works. An Android bridge was also under development, allowing Windows Phone users to basically run Android apps on their handsets, but this is still not working as planned, so it has been delayed indefinitely.
Microsoft has revealed two new Windows-powered flagship phones to be released before the holiday shopping season starts, both powered by the mobile version of Windows 10. The phones look promising, and so does the operating system. Let’s see if the new Windows 10, along with the numerous ways to increase the Windows mobile app architecture, will be enough to breathe life into Microsoft’s struggling mobile business.