For the first time Microsoft has clearly laid out the Windows 10 Universal App development methodology. In an event held at Mobile World Congress today and then followed up by a blog post on the Windows blog, the company outlines how developers will have access to a streamlined development process aimed at bringing Windows to virtually any device with minimal modifications to code. Further, there is one single Windows Store for everything and development of applications will be driven off an adaptive user interface. The information in the blog post is dense and if you are not a developer you may not understand all of the concepts. Still, give it a read. You will get a peak into the thought processes Redmond has around Windows 10, development for that platform and the future of everything running Windows.
In the blog post, Kevin Gallo points out that Microsoft’s commitment to the mobile space is greater than ever before as it is quite simply the area of growth. But it isn’t just mobile devices but also
2-in-1’s, tablets and other form factors that make up this thing called “mobile”
With Windows 10, we are leading a new path forward for mobile experiences – breaking out of the limited box of just mobile devices and empowering customers take full advantage of all of the screens in their life. For Windows, these mobile experiences are powered by our one Windows core and the universal app platform.
The message here is clear: There is one Windows 10 and it is simply adapted from a user experience to the form factor of the device that it is being consumed upon. This is a big shift from where the world sits today in Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1.
To do this they have announced a new Adaptive UX methodology that when leveraged by the developer, the app is rendered properly based on the device capabilities and the user input models change based on that same information. In other words, the developer doesn’t have to account for every potential device or input method for their apps. This Adaptive UX model does the work for them.
Equally as important, Microsoft has announced a new way for developers to efficiently turn their web code into an app for Windows 10.
Again, for developers, this is a huge time saver. You don’t necessarily have to crunch code again that has already been developed for the web and can “app-ize” it easily leveraging the new Universal Windows 10 Store.
This announcement and the new Universal app platform will be released during the Build conference in May and more news will undoubtedly come during that event. For now though, we have our first really detailed view of what Microsoft means by Universal apps and how they plan to go about it. There is a lot of this that makes sense and truly makes it possible. Now it is up to developers to leverage it.