Microsoft will reorient the message about just what the Universal Windows Platform, or UWP, means for the desktop and there are few reasons why. With Microsoft’s UWP one of the major focuses at the upcoming Build conference two weeks from now, it gives the company a great opportunity to make it happen.
Confusion around the UWP
The most confusing part regarding Microsoft’s UWP has always been the belief that all apps built with the platform can run anywhere and that the term “universal” refers to hardware.
The term “universal” refers to something else:
- To the tools that allow developers get their product to Windows Store
- To non-consumer features (shared pricing, joint in-app purchase, installing across multiple devices, unified ad-units)
Microsoft sees UWP as something that will someday displace Win32 apps, otherwise known as “classic” desktop programs. Each year that UWP grows, more features are added. Unfortunately, developers are still not totally embracing it because of the so-called “stigma” of Windows 10 Mobile.
Moving away from phones
Microsoft’s opinion is that UWP needs to do a few things in order to gain popularity and to be successful:
- Win on PC and desktop: PC operating systems shouldn’t be treated as mobile operating systems.
- Show all the reasons why it will be better than Win32 because until then, it’s hard for people to move to another platform.
- Convince developers that they’re something more than phone apps.
- Achieving a unified experience in its eco-system.
Succeed on PC and then move to mobile
Microsoft must distance itself from phones and make sure that UWP is successful on desktops. The company will position UWP first as the actual development system for apps and games, and this is the main reason for which mobile is put aside for now.
If UWP cannot succeed on PC, Xbox, Mixed Reality and so on, there’s no way it will succeed on mobile. All in all, this is more unpleasant news for Windows phones fans, as Microsoft will definitely not be putting its efforts behind the phone market. Instead, it seems to be focusing more on desktop, tablets, Windows Mixed Reality, IoT, and other segments
The company’s upcoming announcement on May 2nd will prove that Microsoft is really planning on entering new segments like education. This is going to offer benefits for developers and for the UWP model, as well.
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