Windows 10 Universal Apps

Windows 10 Universal Apps

The Universal App Store is one of the most touted new features that will be available with Windows 10. This feature continues Microsoft’s goal of one operating system for your desktop, laptop, tablet, phone, and game console. With this combined app store, developers will only need to develop one app, and if done correctly, it will work on any of those devices, including the Xbox.

Microsoft is trying to get to a world of one experience, no matter the device. It got part of the way there with Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1, but Windows 10 will really bring that to life. New versions of Visual Studio and software development kits will enable adaptive interfaces and one store and development center. Combined with Azure, software developers will be able to develop one code base for anything running Windows.

Windows 10 will be able to determine what kind the device of the user and adapt the screen to it. If it is a touch screen device, buttons will be larger and include a pop-up keyboard. If it is an Xbox, it will accept gestures from Kinect or controller taps. To accomplish this, Microsoft is using XAML, which is based off regular XML. XAML will be able to be written in a .NET language.

Microsoft is also changing the way these universal apps run on a desktop. Windows 10 uses the same runtime as Windows 8.1, though with a lot of improvements. First, the universal app can run in a window or full screen, instead of just full screen in Windows 8.1. A keyboard and mouse will also be easier to use with these new apps.

For system administrators, these new apps will also be .NET version agonistic by using a new technology called .NET Native. This will also decrease the time it takes to load apps.

Cloud based services will also be huge with the universal app store. Microsoft intends for this development to be done in Azure, thus providing developers a scalable infrastructure to support users. Microsoft will also be expanding the Cortana API to allow developers access to its functions, as well as OneDrive.

Lastly, the Project Spartan browser will also be a universal app, allowing users to carry their browser settings to any device. The new browser is also being deployed via the Windows Store, meaning it will always be kept up to date.

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