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Developers don't love Windows. Can Microsoft mend the relationship?

The frustrated cries from disenchanted Windows phone fans are a familiar "sound" across the blogosphere. The deafening silence that is the apathy of disenfranchised Windows-on-phone developers is an even more impactful response to Microsoft's all too frequent breaks in mobile OS continuity.

Microsoft's Windows-on-phone strategy has been expressed as a number of mobile OSes over the years. In a trek toward OneCore, Windows-on-phone has transitioned from Pocket PC to Windows Mobile to Windows Phone and back to Windows Mobile again. Sadly, the time, financial and (often overlooked) emotional investments of developers in their apps were lost with some of those transitions. So too was some of the trust and faith these developers had in Microsoft.

Microsoft, some developers just aren't "feeling" you

A developer's inability to bring an app, and all the work it represented, from a canceled OS to the next iteration of Windows-on-phone undoubtedly frustrated and disappointed many developers. That frustration was compounded to intolerable levels when committed developers (particularly those who saw themselves as partnering with Microsoft) reinvested in Microsoft's vision only to be burned again – and again.

Consequently, the meager mobile market share that provides little to entice developers, subpar Windows Store performance and paltry opportunities to earn money are not the only reasons developers are not embracing Windows as passionately as they embrace the more vibrant iOS and Android ecosystems.

Those reasons, combined with many developer's negative experiences with Microsoft likely have led some to simply not love Windows. Moreover, it is probable that their experiences have "poisoned the waters," discouraging other developers from embracing Windows as well. This is a big problem. Even Microsoft recognizes that there is a fundamental human, emotional component that drives developers and consumers to a product:

Ultimately, we want people—customers and developers alike—to love the experience on Windows. Success to us is about our customers and developers loving Windows 10.

Simply put, no amount of streamlining processes, improving tools, guarantees of app visibility or promises of high return on investments (ROI) can bypass the reality that developers (and consumers) are, in part, emotionally-compelled beings. An appeal to the intellect, particularly when there are emotional barriers erected, will not drive a developer to love or get excited about Windows.

As BUILD 2017 approaches, Microsoft should consider how it will appeal emotionally as well as intellectually to developers. How will it promote good feelings about the company, its products and ultimately woo developers to embrace Windows 10, the Universal Windows Platform and Microsoft's personal computing vision?

Framing the mobile message with full Windows 10

Each year at BUILD, Microsoft appeals to its developer community to embrace the company's evolving personal computing vision. Microsoft has many businesses and is a software company and a self-proclaimed cross-platform dev-box for Windows, iOS and Android.

Myerson Windows 10

Myerson Windows 10 (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

Microsoft's Windows 10 story is its mobile story.

Mobile, though a priority for Microsoft, is not reflected in a push of the current iteration of Windows-on-phone — Microsoft's tools like Azure of Xamarin get attention for iOS and Android aspirations. In anticipation of Windows 10 on ARM and cellular PCs, Microsoft has a greater focus on what will represent the next iteration of Windows-on-mobile.

Windows 10 on ARM: Microsoft's ultimate mobile device vision comes into focus

Since full Windows 10 on ARM is expected to power Microsoft's "ultimate mobile device" (i.e Surface phone / ultramobile PC), the Windows 10 story is the mobile story. In other words, we must realize that as Microsoft makes various appeals for developers to embrace developing for Windows 10 at BUILD 2017, those appeals by default, will also be appeals to develop for what Microsoft has coming next in the mobile space (and they should make this clear).

That's all well and good, but Microsoft has appealed to developers to build for Windows 10 in the past with less than stellar results.

Bridging the gap

In 2015 Microsoft introduced the app Bridges to help developers reuse their existing iOS, Web, Win32 or Android (now canceled) code to ultimately build UWP apps.

Microsoft's VP for Windows Developer Platform Kevin Gallo said:

Our goal is to make it easy for developers...to bring existing code to the one billion devices we expect to see running Windows 10 in the next few years" … HTML/JavaScript, .NET and Win32, Java/C+ + and Objective-C bring their code to Windows, and provide a way to integrate with Universal Windows Platform capabilities.

Sadly, the Android Bridge was canceled, and we've seen little developer enthusiasm for the remaining bridges. So why are developers not excited about bringing their existing code to a broader audience on Windows? A mere one percent smartphone market share is one barrier.

But what of more successful mobile devices, like 2-in-1 tablets and convertible laptops? Perhaps their lack of constant connectivity (unlike smartphones) is a barrier. The greater mobility of always connected cellular PCs — laptops, tablets, and 2-in-1s — coming later this year may make those form factors a more enticing target for mobile app developers. In anticipation of cellular PCs and a possible ultramobile Surface PC with telephony, I've predicted Microsoft will aggressively push of the Project Centennial app bridge to bring Win32 apps to the UWP.

Microsofts' Project Centennial app bridge makes sense of Win32 apps on phone

If mobile app developers' reluctance to embrace the app bridges is due to the lack of a mobile platform to deliver those apps to consumers, then highly mobile cellular PCs (and a telephony-enabled ultramobile Surface PC) should address that concern at least in part. If the problem is a fundamental lack of love for Windows, Microsoft has much more work to do.

Discoverability, monetization and a billion devices? Promises, promises

Developers want users to discover and buy their apps, or they at least want to earn money via advertising associated with their apps. Microsoft's Partner Group Program Manager for the Universal Store, Todd Brix stated in a blog post last year:

Both the growth of Windows 10 customer base and the increase in customer engagement (both with the Store and with the apps...) will enable us to deliver on our promise of providing a platform where developers can find growing success.

Sadly Windows 10's growth has stalled just shy of 500 million devices, store engagement on PCs is lower than expected, and Window-based smartphones represent less than 1 percent of the market. All is not doom and gloom though, as some developers are still bringing apps to the platform and others are updating theirs. Still, the fact that many developers never embraced Microsoft's UWP vision and many who have are withdrawing their apps speaks volumes. This is particularly painful when considering just last year Brix's same blog post stated:

One billion Windows 10 devices creates a fantastic opportunity for developers as Windows 10 extends the universal apps model making it easier for developers to build apps that span Windows devices.

Another spokesperson continued:

… Phone is a key part of bringing Windows 10 to more people, and Microsoft will continue to focus on delivering the most productive Windows-based smartphones on the planet.

Sadly, with Microsoft's apparent confidence-killing reversal on first-party phones and subsequent revision of its one billion Windows 10 device install target, the potential for discoverability and monetization dropped dramatically. Thus, Microsoft's efforts to improve monetization now begin to ring hollow for many developers.

Developers who bought into Microsoft's vision may feel more comfortable using Microsoft's tools to develop for the more widely accepted platforms where opportunities for discoverability and monetization (though still very slim in crowded apps stores) are more likely than on Windows. That's not an entirely bad thing though.

Xamarin: Then there was one

Microsoft's acquisition of Xamarin last year presents an opportunity for the company to offer developers a tool to develop for multiple platforms simultaneously. Thus, developers inclined to use Microsoft's development tools to target iOS and Android could potentially be won to using Xamarin to reach Windows as well. Microsoft shared (opens in new tab):

We're excited to have Xamarin join Microsoft and the opportunities it will offer developers – making it easy to share common app code across Windows, iOS, and Android apps while still delivering fully-native experiences for each of the platforms.

Such a move could represent an ideological shift where developers will see "mobile" as a single target, rather than three distinct platforms from which Windows is often omitted as a target for app development. Maybe.

Windows phone isn't dead part VI: App gap Microsoft has a platform for that

Time to come clean

The frequent breaks in mobile OS continuity, the failure of the Store to deliver on promised activity and discoverability opportunities; the diminished opportunities for monetization and the major shortfall in Windows 10 device growth among other challenges undoubtedly puts a sour taste in many developers mouths toward Microsoft and developing for Windows.

As BUILD 2017 approaches, Microsoft should be thinking about how it will appeal to developers on an emotional level to get past these barriers. Microsoft prides itself on the premise that it is a "do more" company that provides the tools to help individuals and companies do more.

Microsoft's "do more" vision of quantum computing

Satya Nadella talks about Microsoft's "do more" vision.

In the past, that philosophy has been the current that has driven many of BUILD's keynotes and presentations. These keynotes conveyed how great the company's tools are and how they would help developers meet their objectives. The tone from Microsoft to attendees has been a, "you need us" or at least a "you're better with us," message.

Microsoft must acknowledge why developers don't love Windows.

Microsoft's poor app ecosystem and precarious position in mobile states the contrary, however. Microsoft needs developers. And for the reasons I've shared many developers just don't love developing for Windows. This has been and will be an unaddressed elephant in the room at BUILD. Microsoft needs to openly acknowledge this problem and its role in why it exists.

Reconciliation and a new beginning?

While Microsoft's missteps have left many developers smarting, it's the lack of acknowledgement of these mistakes that hurts more. Simply "being nice" (like Microsoft with its first-ever Windows Developers Award) and brushing over past offenses hasn't helped to significantly heal the open wounds.

Microsoft can begin connecting with developers emotionally if it initiates its communication at BUILD 2017 with an acknowledgment of how some of the company's actions and decisions negatively impacted some developers. An apology, a promise to set things right, and a vision for the future — both far and near.

Furthermore, the underlying current driving the event should be one that acknowledges the value of the developer community and how much Microsoft needs them rather than how much developers can benefit from Microsoft's tools. Microsoft's innovations can easily be framed within a context of how much Microsoft values the contributions of and partnerships with developers who embrace its vision.

When an offense isn't acknowledged, the trust is shaken. Though there are no guarantees the past won't repeat itself, Microsoft's acknowledgment of how its actions negatively affected many developers can be the beginning of rebuilding the trust needed to get them to love Windows.

And, of course, getting developers to love Windows is the goal.

Jason L Ward is a columnist at Windows Central. He provides unique big picture analysis of the complex world of Microsoft. Jason takes the small clues and gives you an insightful big picture perspective through storytelling that you won't find *anywhere* else. Seriously, this dude thinks outside the box. Follow him on Twitter at @JLTechWord. He's doing the "write" thing!

211 Comments
  • Thanks for reading folks! As we know developers are a key variable in the success of Microsoft's efforts. As I've shared many developers simply don't love Windows. Many who go to BUILD are even more interested in using Microsoft's tools to build for iOS and Android rather than Windows. So what are your thoughts. SHould MS come clean with developers at BUILD 2017, apologize for it failures, and acknowledge its role in why developers don't love Windows and commit to doing beter going forward?
  • That was a damn good article. I agree that MS has to do something to get developers more interested in the ecosystem. I've seen users of Windows 10 not even take advantage/use the new tile based Start Menu. I don't think many understand the benefits of using tiles on the start menu and simply scroll through the app list.
    Since this is an area that the Windows Store kind of thrives on, perhaps more should be done to get consumers to understand how apps can be used and benefits, when pinned to the Start Menu. More has to be done to promote the features of Windows 10, not just leave it to the average consumer to figure out. Most will likely only use what they are familiar with and avoid the rest. Additionally, MS has to appeal to the developers that still embrace Windows 10, by helping them make the most of the features that can be added on Tiles. Of course... actionable tiles would be something that would be nice to have and promoted.
    My point is that Devs have to fully understand the benefits of exploiting all features that Windows 10 is capable of. Otherwise, even the ones that still embrace Windows 10 will only do the minimum effort into their apps. There should be a clear benefit of using the app verses the browser, or aps on other platforms for that matter. That's what MS should focus on promoting. And...if there isn't an advantage of over using a browser or other platforms apps, then MS better come up with a very compelling one or two and implement them in the development tools and features of Windows 10.
    Everything else, you've already touched on, but that's just my two cents worth. 😀
  • Good article Jason.
    Few points from professional developer:
    1. Dev are where the jobs are.
    2. Most of the 'real' software are actually running on desktop PC. Pretty much all major financial sector systems (banks, insurance, asset managers, ..), government's systems are running on Windows. These systems are not UWP, we are talking win32/64 software. Please don't call it legacy. In that note the demand for Windows developers is there.
    3. What developers like is stability, consistency and ease of development (read API) for their choose platform. Full Windows 10 (desktop) is by far the best and most powerfull platform. Bar none. Shame that this not apply for mobile. In fact iOs and Android are much better in that space.
    4. Marketing/buzz is key in dev community. If a technology is considered cool/bleeding edge, then it has a good chance of success. Sadly Microsoft image now days is far from cool.
    5. MS Dev tools/languages such as VisualStudio, .NET framework, SQLServer, Azure Studio are much superior than its competitors. However, these are paid licenced products. App developers are looking for free tools utilizing open source library (aka free). That's way MS should find a way to give away VisualStudio.
    6. Finally, MS must stop charging developers listing their app on Windows Store. Quite the opposite.
  • 1: Yes, there is a huge demand for good Windows devs out there. 2: Devs, like most people, don't like changes, especially endless ones with each version of Windows. Plus, humans are creatures of habit - if they develop for Win32/64, they will tend to stick to that. And UWP is a nice idea, but.. when tablets can run Win32/64, and no mobile marketshare, what reason would a dev have to take up interest in UWP? 3. See #2: along with being creatures of habit, the OS should be, too. Windows Phone has struggled here. Sure, NOW it finally starts to come of age with OneCore and sharing the consistency going forward in the Windows 10 upgrade model, but without a phone/mobile screen device with any sort of appealing marketshare. 4. And yes, very true! Marketing buzz... Yes. Don't just lecture and give pep rally encouragement at conferences, actually get out there and start promoting your own products! Show devs you are actually trying to succeed! PROMOTE your own platform for a change! One of the biggest points of humor is seeing how most people think Windows Phone died a few years ago mostly from not hearing anything about it - no ads, no radio spots, not even promotional materials from MS. If you didn't have a Windows Phone, you wouldn't know it existed. And again, without the mobile/phone screen and Xbox/HoloLens not having a big Enterprise interest (yet?), what reason is there for devs to code UWP? I don't see one.
  • 1. Dev are where the jobs are.
    Yes.
    2. Most of the 'real' software are actually running on desktop PC. Pretty much all major financial sector systems (banks, insurance, asset managers, ..), government's systems are running on Windows. These systems are not UWP, we are talking win32/64 software. Please don't call it legacy. In that note the demand for Windows developers is there.
    I've seen a recent trend of migrating Win32 (and brand new) enterprise applications to the Web. What's your experience? 
    3. What developers like is stability, consistency and ease of development (read API) for their choose platform. Full Windows 10 (desktop) is by far the best and most powerfull platform. Bar none. Shame that this not apply for mobile. In fact iOs and Android are much better in that space.
    As I said, with the move to the Web this is getting more and more irrelevant. Just order to use Chrome/Firefox/IE11 and you don't need to worry about changing APIs anymore.
    4. Marketing/buzz is key in dev community. If a technology is considered cool/bleeding edge, then it has a good chance of success. Sadly Microsoft image now days is far from cool.
    What is cool for consumers doesn't always align with what is cool for developers. Sad but true.
    5. MS Dev tools/languages such as VisualStudio, .NET framework, SQLServer, Azure Studio are much superior than its competitors. However, these are paid licenced products. App developers are looking for free tools utilizing open source library (aka free). That's way MS should find a way to give away VisualStudio.
    Visual Studio already has a free version named Community, functionally wise identical to Professional. Web developers can also use Code, which AFAIK is 100%.
    6. Finally, MS must stop charging developers listing their app on Windows Store. Quite the opposite.
    It's been a long time since I cared about that fee, but when I published my app it was free for Dreamspark users and shortly after they got rid of that fee. It wasn't that much either.
  • MS developer tool is too big, easy to go up 10GB - 20 GB. 
  • Thanks ia_win. And thx for that thoughtful response.
  • Here's some more feedback: You mentioned "the frequent breaks in mobile OS continuity", but never stated exactly what you mean by that. Consumers will likely nod their heads and think of the devices that were left behind each time MS released a new major version. That's a problem for developers too, in the sense that it fragments the market. It's not necessarily a problem in terms of software development. The break between WM6.5 and WP7.x was huge. Developers were required to start from scratch. From then on out however, the technical breaks were nowhere near as big. Almost all existing software continued to run. Turning a WP7.x app into a WP8.x app required modifications, but it was far from a complete rewrite. Migrating from WP8.x to W10M was simpler still. From a developer's point of view these were *not* huge issues. The far bigger continuity problem is MS' ever changing strategy and their failure to seriously commit to anything (building devices if OEMs do not, building devices for enterprise, value-seekers and enthusiasts, no official word on the role of W10M). In terms of importance, the breaks in software technology and devices being left behind paled in comparison to those strategy and commitment breaks. IMHO there is nothing MS can say at build that would help their cause anymore. Most developers I know simply don't consider MS trustworthy. MS has always had issues committing to a strategy and/or a product. Every single company I know that invested in MS' technologies is now running on outdated or severely outdated technology (WPF, Silverlight, a handful of different database access technologies, etc). What you guys are noticing here via WP/WM is just the tip of the iceberg. It's a problem that affects all of MS. Only their largest franchises are exempt. Nadella recently mentioned that MS, as a company, embraces failure. That is exactly the wrong message! Developers interpret that as MS being willing to drop anything that isn't successful and move on (rather than sticking to their strategy and fixing it). At this point, most developers understand they are better off avoiding any MS product or service until it is firmly entrenched in the market. That screws any strategy that relies on developer involvement to succeed. You can't tell people what your strategy is, have them invest their money in your strategy, and then abandon the strategy. MS must fix their track record. There is simply no reason to believe anything MS says about strategy or commitment. Why should it be different now than in the past? Talk won't cut it. Fixing that will take years, assuming they even understand the problem. Either they do that, or they come out with something so spectacular and exciting that it takes the market by storm, consumers, developers, everyone. I think those are their only two options.
  • Absolute fantastic read. Thanks for the good thoughts
  • Thanks for the support and great input Vincent. 😎
  • Jason, what's your thoughts on why MS even brought companies like Xarmin? If the name is wrong, I mean the app development ones.
  • Great read, Jason! I actually stopped writing at 1800Pocket/PC partially due to the low interest in Windows overall coupled with a bigger opportunity for work in my life. I think app development kind of reached a similar low and we see an even lower interest due to Microsoft's inability to connect and communicate their plans to the world at large. UWP is a great goal, but we need to see commitment from Microsoft's side. The lack of commitment shows developers that they, too, should not commit and instead focus on where the traffic, and therefore the money, lies: iOS and Android. I'm relaunching my website because my interest (and my hope) in the UWP platform is renewed with the promise of Windows 10 on ARM. However, Microsoft needs to deliver on that promise and commit to supporting it (advertising, developer discounts and outreach, first-party app support, etc) if they want modern developers to take their endeavors seriously.
  • I don't think they need to apologize, but to acknowledge the problem would be good too. But then what?
    Would the developers and Microsoft be tight?
    Would that be enough to develope for Windows?
    Microsoft has to know that their past support can't keep going. They need to be innovative in that regard, too. Just my thought.
  • Microsoft has lost this generation of developers. They should be pouring resources into finding and growing the next generation, much the way sports teams scout kids. Heck, baseball teams have their own academies in Latin America. Imagine if Microsoft had STEM academies around the globe where they paid for promising students to attend, or summer and after school camps. They should also be giving away Cloudbooks and double down on the idea of the App Studio or develop something comparable to Apple's Swift.
  • Another great article, thanks Jason! I wish I was able to always reply and get into the discussion on your articles but life and work always conspire to other things. ;) Beyond current developers, Microsoft also need to target the next generation of devs in school. I imagine a program as part of the Office suite that builds upon the tools from the Windows App Studio and turns them into a program that essentially lets you build apps as easily as you would a PowerPoint or Publisher document - and then export to either Visual Studio for more advanced stuff, or export directly to Windows UWP, iOS, and Android from within the program. Build something to get kids interested in making apps - as much as I love Visual Studio and the idea of Xamarin - it's a pain to try and teach this stuff to 11-15 year olds who still struggle with HTML - I'm gradually introducing my students to more stuff each year and at a younger age but it's a years long process and Microsoft hasn't done anything to help there at all really. Small Basic was really nice, but they've not updated it or done anything with it for years now. If education is a new focus I hope they're building (and will promote and maintain) some great new tools for educators. If MS can grab the students and get them into their programming and app building ecosystem then Windows apps will have a future. Otherwise Chromebooks and iOS will win out.
  • We have feasted on so many MS articles lately on WC regarding MS's shortcomings that it is becoming a bit click-baity.
    ..
    About the article, yes, MS must get the help it needs from developers for it clearly cannot help itself without them. Moreover, MS has tried in the past, but the developers are left out in the cold with MS's mismanagement of mobile - which is where most apps are active. I love the universal apps. I use them on my PC and phone, so I hope they can gain more traction.
    ..
    EDIT: words.
  • Jason produces nothing but click bait junk.    Trying to remove my account from WC right now.   I have already stopped users from several of my domains from accessing WC because of this.   Last post, bye guys.    
  • " I have already stopped users from several of my domains from accessing WC because of this"  WOW, talk about facism.....Somebody writes something you don't like, then you would not only decide not to read it (as is your right) but you will force others not to. The sad state of "liberals" these days. And then they complain "I don't know how somebody can vote for Trump, I will run to my safe space". The answer is YOU. You are the reason people vote for Trump. They are tired of YOU, look at the mirror. You don't like something, don't read it. It is a simple comcept to understnad. You don't force it on other people. 
  • Why the rant on liberals? I don't agree with what MakoDaniels said, but I'm not going to call MK a fascist. Jason asked good questions, and one big problem is I doubt anyone who can do anything about it ever reads this space. They should.
  • Thanks Nelle🙂
  • These political labels are getting a bit confusing. A liberal cannot be a facist by definition. 
  • You've both been triggered over absolutely nothing. Signed a libertarian.
  • @ACF1 just an FYI, facism is a conservative extremism, not a liberal one. fas·cism [ˈfaSHˌizəm]   NOUN an authoritarian and nationalistic right-wing system of government and social organization.
  • Hi Mako. Can you give a more detailed response as to why you feel this article is "clickbait" junk? Since the article breaks down the areas where developers were negatively affected by something Microsoft did or didn't do and concludes with how Microsoft might begin to address the effects of the disconnect between the company and developers, perhaps your response can be presented in fashion that refutes the legitimacy and validity of what I presented.
  • You're asking too much of him.
  • It's true we've seen perhaps 6 or 7 articles about how bad Windows Mobile is on WC in a little more than 2 weeks. Let's make it clear WM is dead and the resurection is coming, so just be patient, i'm a little disapointed to see how WC has became PESSIMIST about WM, i like to read the positive thing about WM on WC before, it was one of the reason i read WC. If a blog like yours can't support what you like and fight for it, there's no reason for us readers to follow you anymore, we will go somewhere else where the grass is greener. Even if the percentage of peoples who still believing in WM is perhaps 1%, still 1% is not 0% and 1% can become more and more, 100% can only become less. I believe Microsoft is doing what they can, they just need more time to bring all the changes on the table, i always had faith on them and i won't change my opinion because there's nothing new coming out now about WM, Great Things take time, if you really love WM you should support it now matter what happen, if not just switch, nobody telling you not doing so...  
  • Ms should do the best to make developers work much easier to raise up MS phone market . Ms can do it .
  • Wasn't that the whole point of the bridges - to make the developers work easier?
  • Ya think . They care anymore?
  • That's exactly the wrong strategy. MS has already been doing exactly that! The definition of insanity is to keep on doing the exact same thing over and over again but expecting different results...
    Developers will do nothing if the market doesn't exist to sell to. MS must go after consumers! Not developers. Developers will do whatever it takes to reach consumers wherever they are. iOS or Androud were nevdr easy to develop for. Developers serviced those markets anyway... because they were and remain profitable.
  • Hoping they are reading our words
  • Satya simply doesn't want to. He didn't like Ballmer purchasing Nokia from the start and that's why he's ignored the phone side of MS
  • Hope someone listening to us here.
  • I know I know I'm not a developer, and this is slightly off topic, but the many pictures of a sad/sorry looking Nadella have me wondering: How much of the problems we all keep taling about on this site and another power user site ahem, are actually Nadella's "fault"? Or how much was issues that were under others and he's taking the blame for?
  • I agree. I think ms was in deep **** before Nadella come. Now he's gonna make new **** with the old ****.
  • Yes, as cloud provider, but bashing its own ecosystem, fading away in the long term, or at best becoming a company like oracle
  • During the Ballmer era, he was pushing Microsoft employees to use their own phones. From what I read online, anyone who were using a competitors phone were frowned upon. Under his era, the market share in international countries picked up to a about 15%-20% usage. In United States, it went to about 5%.
    Once Satya Nadella became the CEO, you can see what happened. I was originally really excited when Satya became the CEO, because I thought that him, working with engineers, he would understand the market, but I guess he didn't. Since he worked in the enterprise market, he now tries to focus on enterprise users, which is what killed the Windows Mobile.
    Here's the thing - it's not the popularity of a product that will bring the product usage from enterprise to consumers. It's other way around - it's the consumers who will bring the popularity of the product to the enterprise.
  • That's the point, it's not what in ms undestand
  • I miss Nokia and all of their work to bring apps to the platform. Looking back at it, the Nokia acquisition was the biggest excitement/disappointment for me.
  • Agreed 100%  Nokia was a trusted name.  Yes, they fell behind, but could have made a come back.  Sort a wish MS kept them as a separate division to develop their phone strategy and planning to join with MS later on.  Still love my N95....just like hearing the screen click when I slide it.  My 930....last of a generation.....with Windows on it - I really love it!
  • Their SD835 based Nokia 9 specs look real good.  Hopefully, MS would provide a W10M ROM for that device.
  • I agree with you wholeheartedly, I just hope that they do what is necessary to win the developers over, i'm hoping that this is breakout year for MS, they have to, I feel like this is the last year they have to make a difference in developer and consumer hearts.
  • Pretty sure someone said this about last year, and the year before, and the year before......
  • Windows anyway is the top os in the gaming
  • lol, I actually decide what platforms my company supports, and as long as Windows is only used on desktop, there is absolutely no reason to take a fully functional/maintained web app and turn it into an UWP app.
  • That's what nadella didn't understand...
  • Guys just remember this. No matter what new Windows 10 device is released, developers can adapt pretty quickly to that device. We won't need to do a complete rewrite like WP7->8->8.1/10 until UWP actually dies.
  • But the underlying question is - are you SURE ? Let's review. Windows CE: Dead. WM6.x: Dead. Windows Phone 7: dead. Windows RT: Dead. Now we have a new Windows UWP, WOA, and WC.  But... Windows 32: Never died.  Been functional since the 1990s.  So if you're a developer - why spend time developing for Microsoft's new mobile ecosystem if they can't even guarantee it'll be around in 2 years ? Why not develop for Windows 32x/64 instead? I think THIS is the problem.
  • All their devices are on the same/similar platform already. They've already reached the end goal and now the desktop OS is becoming more and more reliant on UWP. Even the control panel loses features after every major update since the settings app is becoming becoming more powerful. Also, for people who just want to develop for win32 there's project centennial which let's them tap in to some Win 10 APIs. When they want the scalability or want to use the more advanced APIs then they can gradually convert they app to a full UWP app. This is a long term game. Eventually, the majority is going to move from Windows 7 to Windows 10 anyway.
  • Sorry but why shoud I as a developer care or be bothered about UWP.  its just meh. So what. The hot action is all on Android and Web Applications.
  • If it's just meh to you then its not for you. If you were a Windows /Window phone developer in the past and/or want to further utilize your C# skills, this is a great platform! (with a very bad store search 😢)
  • UWP isn't even a mainstream thing yet so its hasn't even received the breathe of life fully.
  • What do Microsoft employees say about the silence and inactivity of the mobile part? I don't hear any voices.
  • They don't even use it
  • except for the ones that do
  • All 6 of them
  • 5 now. One traded in for an Apple yesterday.
  • Nah a gS8+
  • Wtf I met part of the Microsoft team, 7 members (chief of windows & devices of spain, cortana outside of US and Canada chief and other members) 4 of them (the rest didnt bring they phone out) had a lumia 950 or 950 xl, so stop the BS. Microsoft made mistakes with WP: marketing (huge mistake), lack of active support and lack of new devices. My sister doesnt know **** about tech, but she misses her 730, ******* 730, after buying an Oppo (600$) some weeks ago, so, yeah almost all WP users are techy guys, but some (a few) people, average consumers, also love it, even when they are kinda outdated... 
  • Whoa 4 of them wow 1 less than the 5 mwright stated. Thanks for confirming.
    So yeah.
    All 4 of them.
  • Hi, I'm the guy who attended the event with you! You've got to admit that not seeing any Windows phone on exhibition there was kind of a letdown. Of course it wasn't MS's fault that Mediatek and company wanted to show their hardware, but putting some pressure on them would have been the proper thing to do. On topic. Marketing? Sure. Lack of new devices? Yeah. But lack of support? They kept developing Windows 10 Mobile against the public opinion that it was too different (tiles, pivots, panorama) and the lack of apps. It's obvious we fans love the system, but it's also obvious that most of the market has actively ignored Windows on phones for a long time, and Microsoft hasn't given up yet.
  • MS is POOR at marketing. 
  • Yeah, 90% of the PC/laptop/workstations world runs on Windows since the previous century... they are soooo poor at marketing..
    90% of the corporate world is on MSOffice/Office 365 they are soooo bad at marketing...
    1.2 billion people are using Office, what a failure.....
    They started from nothing and now have a substantial share in the Game console market... they are sooo poor at marketing.... with Surface emerging in corporations for the last 3 years they virtually stopped the growth of iPads in the corporate world another example of poor marketing...
    In less then 2 years they managed to have W10 on 400,000,000 devices.......
    More than 400,000,000 active users on outlook.com
    340,000,000 downloads of Office on iOS and Android
    shall I continue?
  • Lmao this guy thinks it's because of marketing
  • Check their twitter for iphone feeds.....
  • It's been reported, from journalists who know people inside Microsoft, that Redmond employees have never used Windows phones.  They use iPhones and high end Androids.
  • Some MS guy was replying to jez on twitter and he seemed to say windows mobile ain't dead: https://twitter.com/mahoekst/status/855273868583288833
  • ...and can you believe him? I for one don't. Like Dona, they are simply dodging every phone related topics, speaking in riddles because they do not have the guts to tell the truth...typically MS.
  • Why should anyone show Microsoft any love when ms had screwed over so many consumers and developers alike. It all starts with better communication and actually showing that you believe in your platform with actions not once a year speeches.I shouldn't need a decoder ring to figure out what Nadella means by mobile.
  • I don't understand the click-bait comments, however this is a good solid article and true. Another downside of developing for Windows is that most apps are now migrating to the cloud, so there is little point in developing for a PC. However Microsoft have put enourmous efforts into Xamarin since last August and still improving, it is now a reliable solid development platform for Android and IOS apps.
  • I think people are just sick and tired of ms
  • MS = BS
  • First of MS should stop charging developers to develop for its platform, it demands 30% of the revenue share as well, are they crazy?
  • How much does Apple or Google demand?
  • Well, the same, but: 1. Android and iOS both offer a huge user base. Windows does not. Why pay MS 30% of your income for five copies when you can give Apple 30% of your income and sell five hundred copies?
    2. Android and iOS developer tools are free for all use. Microsoft's are not. Read the license agreement for Visual Studio Express.
  • They have more market share...
  • 18% for pro apps
  • I don't believe there are charges any more, if they are they are small. Visual Studio community is excellent and free. Microsoft Dev essentials bundles a bunch of other benefits too (ok, some trialware as well, but whatever, you don't have to install it and the trials and discounts are better than not having them). The 30% charge in the store is the same as apple and google's.  And you can choose not to distribute through the store (thought it does involve explaining that users need to turn on sideloading for their PC's to be able to install the appx). I will say thought, that maybe reducing that 30% rate for new developers might be a nice gesture e.g for first app / for first $x of app income or something.
  • Ms is far behind apple and google in terms of marketshare so dont compare with them. Yes sideloading is an option but how many regular consumers will do it and what ll be your channel of promotion without the store?
  • " store engagement on PCs is lower than expected .." Lower than *who* expected?   Anyone with any common sense was pointing out, during the whole W10 release ra-ra period, that mobile style 'apps' on desktops never made sense, as due to large monitors and keyboard/mouse/trackpad interface paired with your browser of choice, apps were superflous outside of the x86 Windows programs. But nobody wanted to hear that. Apps are important on mobile---phones and tablets under 7-8 inches---as the lack of screen real estate and touch interface demand it. It's not rocket science.
  • I would have liked an app centric experience on PC too. Especially if the experience was similar to phone, I could move from one device to the other for a similar, but larger screen experience. Maybe there would be extra features on the big screen view that you can't get on mobile. The dream crashed when WP couldn't get users and developers to see the unified platform vision.
  • Or when ms failed it with allmost zero marketing
  • you say "that mobile style 'apps' on desktops never made sense". I agree with you, but the same platform and store is supposed to house the next generation of full feature apps. Today on Windows central i an article about Live Home 3D - a full feature 3D home design environment. Is that a mobile style app? It comes from the store. Honestly, this is part of the problem articulated here - microsoft didn't do enough to encourage developers to push for full feature application experinces, or talk to it's consumers about how the fact that you get it from the store shoudln't mean it's lightweight. What makes a lighter app vs a full feature one? Surely it has nothing to do with whether you get it from a store or a website download link? Nor should it have anything to do with whether the background is traditional windows forms grey or white or black. It's all about what it can do, right? And Good app developers should be able to craete a good app in Windows Forms, Wpf, or UWP and pack it full with a ton of features. But ultimatly, quit thinkning store means mobile app. It doesn't, it just means store. However, if you think certain apps there are lightweight, and the developer could do better, let them know.  
  • This is why I love this site. It is where real people live, asking real questions. Microsoft, this is where the humans visit and comment and share. Are you listening to their everyday experiences with your product!? Clearly while the writers on this site love windows products, they aren't afraid to call out Microsoft when their decisions effect people negatively. That's why I keep coming back to see what these writers have to say, good and bad.
  • MS haven't got a clear vision where and how they will succeed in future, ISO 9000! The ones who set the VISION is the leaderboard of MS. If the vision randomly changes all the time, like it has done several times in one year, MS will fail. Then we have the methods how the vision will be fullfilled, there they have failed misserably too what it seems, ISO9000. If we are talking quality system of the enterprise👍
  • Since Microsoft owns xamarin, they can only force developers to put their apps first on Windows store and then on other stores. I can't see any other way for Microsoft to receive developers
  • Trying to force anyone to do anything will be the fastest way to lose that audience.
  • How about forcing all Microsoft made apps and updates to come to Windows first. It's in-house, so it can be done. The ship to iOS and Android first mantra they had is bull!@#$ and tells the developers to focus on iOS and Android. Lead by example...
  • While Xamarin is ok, MS could actually show they mean to support it long term by having one of their big franchises utilize it. If Office was developed with Xamarin, I would trust in its future a whole lot more.
  • What are developers actually SAYING?  When THEY are asked directly, what do they say is the reason for not also making UWP versions of their apps?  Here's the thing...IF you make it virtually a click of a button to port any given iOS or Android app to a UWP, then there is no real effort to the 'development' of a UWP app.  So, any "market share" excuse is simply that: and EXCUSE.  Sure, if Xamarin is a way to develop something once and the output is the same app for UWP, iOS and Android, that's great.  But it requires them to have developed the app that way to begin with. If it's still a pain in the rear to port an already mature iOS or Android app over to UWP, then I certainly understand "market share" as a reason.
  • It's not just the porting.   If a developer ports an app to Windows, they also have to spend time/money/resources to support it with updates, bug fixes, etc. So then you run into the 'market share' point again.   These days with WM at less than 1%, and the low engagement of apps on Windows 10 desktops and laptops, it's hard to argue the point.
  • You might not be getting my point. If either developing for ALL platforms at one time using Xamarin, or having a porting tool that is little more than clicking a button, what "time/money/resources" are involved in supporting a UWP? You disocover an issue, you update it in the source code and it updates all three.  The only time you would spend any "extra" resources would be if a glitch showed up that is absolutely unique to one platform and not the others.  BUT, if Microsoft truly IS trying to find out what it would take to woo developers, they would need to actually gather REAL data on those reasons and then address them.  If it turns out seamless, effortless development/maintenance of apps is the issue, MS has got to make those tools...and give them away.
  • Unfortunately, even with Xamarin, it's still not "little more than clicking a button"... if it got to that point you would see more apps being released. However, as it stands, there's still a lot of customization that needs to take place between the platforms. It makes sense to do this customization for iOS and Android, but not so much for Windows 10... the market share just isn't there. Maybe Build 2017 they will make it "little more than clicking a button", but I don't think so.
  • I know some and all complains about ms store prices (30%)
  • Unfortunately your excellent idea isn't button click easy, very difficult, many permutations. Not to mention that UWP is so rough now I'm suspending development on a great concept app I've been creating in it. As a single example I had one item working perfectly and then one group made a change that broke it. Tried to get MS to deal with it and after an initial contact the contact never responded again, dissappeared.
  • If Microsoft wants to entice indie developers to develop for it's future offers, then at the very least it should provide them with free devices. No way I am again investing in a new Windows mobile device on my own that may be discontinued in an year or two
  • Nokia had it, with it's DVLUP program that rewarded developers. It was  a great idea, it made us excited to participate. The Microsoft got it along with the Nokia purchase, renamed it to TechRewards, left it to wither for a year, then killed it off at the end of last year. 
    This was the moment I decided to move on to Android development. Fortunately, Microsoft is now offering Xamarin for free, so I can continue to  use .NET and XAML
  • I'm not developer, but how about the obivous. A mobile user base or truly universal platform where literally the same app code can run on any platform....something that's basically impossible.
  • I think it's why the Apple strategy of having iOS and OSX seperate, but able to play well and sync together, is probably the better way to go. Going forward, Microsoft's best bet is to allow the two dominant mobile platforms to sync and play just as well with Windows, as Windows Mobile.
  • HTML + JS (or WebAssembly soon enough), although there are issues with different browsers there too.
  • I'm no developer but loved playing with basic when I was a kid. Two of our children have dabbled with Windows App Studio Beta & Store kids workshops and made a few apps of their own.
    Microsoft makes a number of free offerings and to publish your own apps is as little $19/yr or free if you you just want to install on personal devices. I'd like to hear from from developers such as Rudy Huyn who were regulars here what's holding other developers back when they can reach so many more with Windows 10? 
  • IF, AND I Mean IF Microsoft will confirm and start to acknowledge mobile and make its intentions known BY ADVERTISING.That is the Only way I would go back to windows mobile, I think its the best, most secure system of all mobile systems. But it is a secure door to KNOWERE without Microsoft Commitment. And it needs sustained commitment. not just one quick commercial.. Cell company adds for the phone on TV as well. Anything less is a SAD failure.
    Think about it Microsoft, I use my Surface pro at work 9 hrs a day.. when I leave work I use my phone for everything, even while watching TV. This device USED to be a windows phone.. Now its Android ,Samsung .. How many hours are there in a Day...Wke Up Microsoft and get with the Country, how we use phones IS NOT THE SAME AS 1980!!
  • Microsoft first needs a platform with marketing. The current one is not competitive.
  • Have you ever seen "Gordon Ramsey's Kitchen Nightmare"? In almost every show, there was one key point wrong with the restaurant - the menu was too big, too diverse, and tried to cater to everyone. This is Microsoft right now.  They're trying to make everyone happy.  And in turn, noone's getting what they want because they can't focus on any one thing. It's no secret shareholders wanted to sell of WP after the Nokia debacle as well as xbox.  They wanted Microsoft to return to a software and service provider.  But...if you want irony - the original xbox was saved by ONE app. (Halo). Otherwise it would've failed in about a year after release, if not sooner.  WM looks like it's doomed to fail because of the same thing that plagued xbox. Not enough apps, and the ones that they have just aren't that good.  
  • Lack of apps is just a symptom, not the cause of failure. No one gains developer support before sales, that just isn't the way it works. Microsoft didn't have a competitive platform with Windows Phone 7. Microsoft was very late to the market and needed to release something great if they wanted any chance at success in 2011. Windows Phone 7 wasn't competitive in the slightest bit. It was lacking so much, it was doomed from the start. Windows Phone 8 was no better. Microsoft didn't learn and released the same basic product with the same limitations. The lack of apps today is a symptom of those failures. It wasn't the cause. If Microsoft released a great product in 2011 that excited manufacturers and carriers then they would have had a chance. Instead, Windows Phone 7 didn't benefit anyone but Microsoft. Without enthusiastic support from those partners, how did Microsoft expect to sell handsets? They didn't realize who their target market was. Hint: it wasn't you. They needed to sell it to carriers and manufacturers, they needed to give them the tools to be successful. Google realized this. They created a platform that handed the power to the carriers and OEMs. Companies like Samsung and Motorola took that power and created devices like the Droid and Galaxy S. They couldn't make those products with Windows Phone. It was lacking features and hardware support and didn't allow them any creativity. Google created a product that gave power to manufacturers and carriers so they took it and ran with it. Microsoft created a platform that gave power to no one so manufacturers and carriers ignored it. That was the issue with Windows Phone. Windows 10 Mobile was no better. Apps were just a symptom of that.
  • MIcrosoft has a lot of work to do for developers, but more specifically Client developers. I don't think ASP.BNet devs, azure devs, those who see Handelmen on his mac, creating Docker containers so Azure Surface Fabric and understnd what's he's just done have been short changed - that stuff has got attention and traction. It's client development that needs a boost. First, Microsoft has a great language in C#, a great compositional UI development language in XAML and a great IDE in Visual Studio.  The improvement in all these three things are great and I hope to hear more about what's next at build. These three should be the be something to attract developers. UWP has problems thoguth. SOme are problems that continue from Windows 8 app environments, others are newer. UWP IS supposed to be the replacement for Windows Forms and WPF (think about where the XAML changes are going like X:Bind) . Microsoft's goal should be that when you go File->New Project and are looking for something with a UI that runs on windows, UWP becomes the defauolt/obvious choice. But it's not. - Most windows devices still don't run windowws 10
    - There is confusion about deployment.  If i create a UWP and am testing it and wantg to give itv to my friend or co worker to test, how does he get it on their PC? Is it differenent at home vs at work? Do i need to get my IT department to set up a "store"? If i do, do they need t be involved every time i update the app (Of course, all the answers to these are available and broadly speaking are "get it from a store, or just pass them the appx and have them go to sesstions to turn on sideloading", "doesn't have to be but IT policies", "not necessarily", "IT policies")
    - People still don't associate the store as the ploace to go for their app - 20+ years of wiring to go to a website, or find setup.exe on a cd, etc.There are good apps there to be had, and this needs to be highlighted more often than one off events like the Windows Developer Day.
    - People don't see the store as a place for quality, full feature apps - People highlight MS office as an example here but I think the expectation of feature parity between Win32 office and UWP office given the history of 30+ years of development is highly simplistic. Development takes time and porting an Win 32 app with high levels of maturity behind it won't happen quickly, and re-writing it will take longer, though could have more benefits (Performance via .Net Native compilation for example).
    - If my app is desined for PC only and won't ru on XBox or mobile, why should i use UWP?
    - As ms doesn't care about mobile, why shoudl i use UWP?
    - As everyone has a browser why should i do UWP rather than a website?
    - .Net is stable, and the SDK is stable. UWP has a different (though similar SDK)
    - Apps that talk to hardware and need drivers can't be ported via bridges and need to be recreated including UWP/>net Core version of the driver. MIcrosoft needs to do a mcuh better job of selling UWP as the way to do full featured windows applications and not just lesser featured apps you might get for free or pay a few dollars for. Microsoft especially needs to do a better job of selling UWP to corporate america. And microsoft needs to do a better job of communicating to customers about what's in the store (and i don't meen by having images of apps in the store tile, I probably mean advertising), And Microsoft needs to take on the challening topic of why having a windows app is better than crrating a website, or is at least something you should do as well. An example would be Wells Fargo who did a UWP for Mobile but didn't do a desktop app. I honestly think that's huge because apart from anything else, that website you access on your windows PC ends up being the place that reminds you to do your app downloads from the iOS and Android stores. As Microsoft isn't geting a mention, it further perpetuates the impression that the Windows store doesn't have anything. Making the Windows store a place to be again is important for the future of UWP. In my mind, If UWP dies, the future of apps on windows is the Web, browser extensions and some future where android apps run on windows. Microsoft is loosing relevancy in client apps outside of gaming and it's a shame as just like Windows Phone, C# and XAML is a great thing and microsoft have been excellent stewards of the languages. But in heavy desire to get ios/andoid and web developers to use Visual Studio, the talk about how to build a high quality Windows client app has been missing in place of cross platform and ASP.Net. Windows forms should be killed in the next VS (Not in frameworks, but by just not including project templates for Windows Forms apps, get them back by installing an extension), and the Template10 project templates for UWP should be included in their place.  I've gone on long enough. My hope for biuld is that MS recognises it needs a base developing client apps using it's modernb frameworks. That they make it very clear via actions and words that they are committed to UWP and why developers shoudl be too. My fear is it becomes an ASP.Net/Azure/Xamarin fest with little mention of UWP.
           
  • Excellent points sir, this is the kind of conversation developers should be having.
  • Disagree about killing Windows Forms. It is still very handly if you know how to cook it. WinForms apps are relatively low-level. There we can handle window messages and use subclassing. We intensively use DirectX and latest touch API. In WinForms it works sometimes better than in UWP, and much better then in WPF with its half-baked D3DImage.
  • UWP continues to be a work in progress, but not a replacement for Win32/Win64, despite MS best intentions. Also in development for UWP apps, why is it so hard to add a Rich Text editor component to an UWP app? It isn't like trying to incorporate full Word in an app that may sell for $3 tops. I don't get some of their decision makings for developers, hardcore and otherwise (I would be in the otherwise category).
  • That picture of Nadella frowning is exactly the way I look when thinking about the current state of windows mobil.
  • The disappointment is the amount of promises. So so many promises. At the next build I just don't think anyone can believe any more. They can only make up for it by releasing something ridiculously awesome that they have kept hidden somehow that will at least bring the loyal back and win back some iOS/android share. I highly doubt they will and Windows on mobile will just never get any better than it currently is. I've always said as long as it stay supported I'll never jump ship (unlike Jez). I hope it always stays supported and half decent devices will always be available.
  • I am longterm windows developer and now working in Xamarin for more than 2 years (yes, paid version :-D ) and I am also happy user of 950, Surface Book and other stuff like big custom PC. Microsoft should think about their constant raising and killing products like Band or Phone. Who will invest time into something what could be killed without notice ? AR/VR is nice stuff but they need developers. So support them - hand one of those $300 kit to every //build 2017 attendee and they will play with it. I understand that Azure is something what drive money into company. That's nice and good. But Windows dying. So more and more Windows developers moving to Android/iOS, from Android to Chrome book or Mac Book and even Surface can't fix it. Also because Surface is not available in all countries where Apple/Google is. Suprisingly there is lot of developers who lives outside of USA.  I spent lot of time with Xamarin on presentations for people here in Czech republic and it is not easy task. 90% of C# developers are server side. And 90% of mobile developers are happy with Android only because Android rulling the world of mobile. So even Xamarin will not be magical silver bullet. Don't count with this.    Maybe I am wrong but sometimes Microsoft missing Balmer and his monkey dance to show their passion. Right now they looks like kind of mix of accounting team with skateboard guys from Surface and XBox team. Why there is still not Win10 core for UWP only for televisions or car dashboards and deal with big TV/Car producers ? MS looks like sleeping beauty who didn't noticed that there is world outside of PC.
  • "AR/VR is nice stuff but they need developers. So support them - hand one of those $300 kit to every //build 2017 attendee and they will play with it." Unfortunately that is not what will happen, and I think both of us know this. What will happen, is the non-developer attendees who're signed up as developers for websites like Windows Central and YouTube creators will review it. Because there is a lack of content, it'll immediately be seen by non-developer reader/viewers and that'll just get passed around with word of mouth that AR/VR is useless on Windows because a lot of people are these days just love to bash Windows regardless of if they're correct or not about what they're saying. 1. Microsoft hands attendee a $300 kit.
    2. AR/VR kit gets reviewed
    3. Microsoft gets linched by the anit-Microsoft mob. People haved hated on Microsoft for many years, I'm sure we've all seen M$ style comments.
    All the cool kids don't have to use Microsoft windows anymore, to gain access to the internet they don't have to use a PC like we pretty much did in the 90's and early millennium. Heck, even office workers who still have to use Windows in their job, can just packup and pull their non-Microsoft device out of their bag as they head home from work. We're a full generation of people now who're totally disconnected from Microsoft that their first real experience of using a PC is going to be at work and depending on the type of job, they may not even be using a PC at all. Microsoft needs more help than just developers. It needs to reconnect with the next generation of users before it's too late. It's sad but they're not using the products they do or did have to help things along. Look at their MSN/Live Messenger IM service, killed it off and replaced it with Skype before skype was even ready to move the contacts over properly, didn't support sending pictures or anything. It was totally useless. Pretty much all the users I know moved to Facebook, and then on to others like Whatsapp or went with things like Instagam. A lot of these were younger generations that used it, their audiance that would be using Microsoft products now, but Microsoft just upped and killed one of the biggest IM networks going, and for what? 
    Then you have their flat out refusal to provide for another of their bigger demogaphics - xbox brand - almost killing that in the process of rebranding on the PC too and it's still a complete mess but on the console, they aren't even trying to support developers or give users the tools to make use of the majority of apps. Microsoft would do well to push Windows 10 continnum desktop to the xbox, with keyboard and mouse support. Instant App PC for millions of kids who only have a xbox and android/ios devices and it gets them hooked into a desktop that'll be transfered to what ever 'mobile' experience Microsoft reinvents from it's mobile devision after Windows mobile handsets are slowly being killed off.
  • as an independent developer i think that Microsof has done plenty on the 'developer' end of things - they have good tools, good documentation, good community... Everything I could possibly need to get my app off the ground from a development stand point. What I don't see from microsoft and what is sorely lacking is the type of activity - advertising, partnerships with the carriers... that tell me as a developer that this will be worth it. I can't tell you how depressing it was to walk into an ATT store and have evey phone suggested to me as an alternative to the 830 i wanted to get a few years ago, if that is how the customer is steered then why should i bother making UWP apps howerver good it is on the technical side of things...
  • That's the first thing they should address. Not ever is a windows phone recommended in a store. This is from what I've read a worldwide phenomenon. Everywhere you get the same look: Whaaat? You want a Windows phone? Why? I doubt they can ever fix this.
  • Went to a Microsoft Store Tuesday (turned out to be a big booth). They had no Windows phones, only the GS8 and GS8+. You can't even FIND a phone, let alone a recommendation, from the majority of the world.
  • What windows phone would they recommend at this point?
  • Howabout the Alcatel Idol 4/4S or the HP Elite x3, you know, real Windows phones released less than 2 years ago.
  • Who on earth would pay such money for the X3?? I ain't that stupid to burn my money on a device running a mediocre OS and having nothing but bugs, pathetic camera and it's overpriced.
  • In fairness, the 830 was a pretty horrible phone. It was when I really found out Microsoft was not going to treat the Nokia acquisition as a long-term investment. I knew the Lumia was doomed as soon as I saw SD400 for $450.
  • Yeah the affordable flagship was a joke.
  • Windows Phone is dead. Get over it. All of these "could have/should have/would have" articles will not change that. Microsoft is still fully committed to mobile. They'll just be committed to mobile on other platforms. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. Other platforms see flagships that are the best possible phone they can build. Windows Phone flagships are always a disappointing compromise. Even with the Elite x3, or the Idol 4s that I recently bought. I'm so tired of always being disappointed with my phone or always waiting for "next year". Windows Phone is dead, and I think even most of us die-hards are ready to accept that.
  • Developers! Developers! Developers!
  • Maybe they should hire him for Build this year!
  • From Microsoft's behavior and strategy, MS seems to work on the philosophy that they do not need customers or developers. What MS needs is a new CEO who believes that the customers are important too!
  • Their biggest mistake was thinking PC market would bring them developers! I hardly use any app from store, the apps are damn slow compared to Win32 apps! If i had a touch screen then i would use it, but not with mouse and keyboard! They should know how many have touch screen devices. A company as big as Microsoft should know what is good, they are acting like kids, thinking about something and then later in the end think again if it was a right choice or not.
    They are focusing on future... Someone has to tell them to think about the present which will take them to future!
    Developers want income in the present, not future!
  • UWP needs to actually be universal. Xamarin basically needs to merge with it or there's no reason for anyone to write a UWP app.
  • As a developer, i'm hoping for some huge news around Xamarin and UWP this BUILD. I think there is a lot that could be done, but it's a lot of retooling to make it work. Now that I own an android device I'm more inclined to play with Xamarin. 
  • I monumentally agree with this article. I've always put it off as I was developing for the UWP (for learning, but I'm releaseing my first published app soon), but we have to come clean: Microsoft has been making the platform stressful, unpredictable, and restricted. I don't have the pleasure of knowing people will fidn and download the app unlless I beg them to, and that applies to other dev's apps. I'm friends with a popular UWP developer named Vitor Norton who makes apps way better than mine, but few actuallty take interest in them because they are a hassle to find and install, and he couldn't add as much functionality because of MS's closed system.   If Microsoft wants developers like me on your Store, they'd need to build their reputation, give us a ton of fuinctioanlity and innovation, and most of all, care about the platform and its users and developers AS WELL as plan for the future. Few incentives have actually made progress in getting people like me to work for months on a good app, simply because we all crave the money, but also the engagement. It is indeed an emotional game. Microsoft needs to let us know they care about us devs and super users and recognizing they goofed up. An apology first needs to happen, then a HUGE launch of something amazing would likely give us hope, so long as people adopt it.
  • With satya it's impossible... :(
  • Developers don't love Windows. Can Microsoft mend the relationship? Developers have never loved Microsoft, it's a love hate relationship, one they love to hate, they'd rather forego additional revenue to punish Microsoft for ... well being Microsoft. What many don't seem to realize is, if not for Microsoft, there would be no Apple or Google. People would still be using Netscape, and AOL if not for Microsoft's vision, sadly over the years Microsoft has become it's own worst enemy. No doubt they don't create great stuff, they just don't support it once it's on the market. All those morons running Microsoft today have no vision, and very little direction. It's sad to watch a company self destruct.
  • How can there not be an opportunity for WP when IOS is remains overpriced vanilla (albeit reliable) and Android a security-averse, clunky OS? And aren't most sub-$400 Androids still nearly unusable after a year? I will never pay for over-priced Apple products, and have yet to find an Android user show me a phone as snappy as day one a year later. But I'm an old tech curmudgeon, have 200 apps but use probably only 20. And will be one of the final WP users, I suspect.
  • There was, in some european coutries and south america too, but then MS decided not to sell it's x50 devices in Brazil for example and scaled back in other places too. MS didn't need to be market leader, but 10-15% in some of these markest was viable. Not in the US or with it's influential tech press, and not in some other coutries maybe, but 10-15% of euriope and south america would have both matched iOS and been enough to keep a viable platform and app ecosystem, especially for products ands services in those countries. You don't have to win (as apple knows well from it's PC market share), you don't even need to win in the US (as Nokia and Sony know), but you just need to do enough to keep a viable place at the mobile table. By "retrenching" on mobile, microsoft is putting itself further away from even the limited success i'm describing and endangering bigger projects entireley, like UWP. Ah well.
  • I have been developing software for small businesses, on the Microsoft platforms, since 1982.  The focus of this article is on Mobile, but it also applies to desktop development.  The Microsoft OS is a moving target, and it's incredibly frustrating to move forward when we have to constantly modify to keep up with their bugs and modifications in new OS releases.  The total lack of support answers does drive away many developers. Example 1:  Many of my customers ran a solid 32 bit Client/Server piece of software as a service.  Microsoft's Anniversary Update killed it, not allowing the service to start.  Win 10 prior to that update was no problem.  Whatever they added was not documented, and all requests by developers world wide for understanding and a solution went unanswered.  Small business owners were forced back to peer to peer operations or had to buy an expensive 64 bit software.  Add one major alienation point between MSFT and small business owners.  Add one frustration point for developers. Example 2:  While some of the core languages still receive support, Microsoft has created some great tools for developing applications only to drop them.  Consider Lightning, a tool that could actually develop a nice SQL application very easily.  Developers could use this to build a client applications quickly and economically.  The software worked well, was attacting an audience of developers, had a cadre of MVP's creating training and writing books on its use, and the potential was significant.  Seeing the interest and success, Microsoft dropped it !  So, developers who spent time and money to learn the product were suddenly without this incredible tool.  Another frustration event solely at the feet of Microsoft. There are many competing tools for building Windows applications, and rather than face all the frustrations of working with the Windows 10 OS and updates, many developers use alternate tools and tell their clients to stay on Win 7.  It's important to realize that software developers are the first ones to be contacted when something suddenly doesn't work after an OS update.  I communicate daily with an international group of application developers, and the concerns, issues, and negative feelings run deep.  Developers want to create and enhance, and they want a rock solid OS upon which they build their solutions.  Sadly, over my 35 years as a professional developer, I've seen far better days ... as have my peers.
  • Why do you even wonder? AU also broke more than half of the web cameras out there because of MS incompetent idiots and lack of proper testing of their update...they do not care about quality anymore! People used to complain about Vista...that was nothing compared to this POS windows 10.
  • Build 2017 will be an epic disappointed. Mark my words. It's the beginning of a total retrenchment. They already tried to make us 'love windows again'. What did they do next? We all know how they ****** us over and over again.
  • Microsoft has to focus.. Nadella's vision, which he did not do.
  • The ******* morons managing UWP still haven't managed to ship a DataGrid with UWP, and no, I will not use a third party control. They have the source for two Datagrids in Silverlight and WPF, and yet they still haven't managed to port one of them. It also doesn't help that the XAML in UWP is complete ******* **** compared to WPF. If they want to get developers on board, hire back the original WPF guys, do a .netstandard version of WPF, and onces that is done, for the love of god, create app stores on iOS and Android. Until that happens, **** UWP.
  • I don't know how they can actually pull it off.  Gates did right by the developers, got us enough knowledge for free that we could see the path.  Balmer, I think, knew that developers were important (DEVELOPERS, DEVELOPERS, DEVELOPERS) but didn't know how to relate/communicate with them to keep them on his side.  Nadella, from what I've observered, doesn't care about developers.  MS is a cloud company in his plans -- we must not be needed.  Maybe, if they could put someone in charge of developer relations who will take care of those brilliant minds that Microsoft so desperately needs to have on their side.
  • Nadella to Windows Phone / Mobile is what Chen was to BB10. RIP.
  • The picture in the article of satya's face say it all
  • The fact you have to keep using that wordy "Windows-on-phone" term says it all. Even the biggest site covering thus stuff can't give it a proper name because MS lacks consistency or commitment. Why would a developer focus on Windows when its parent focuses on iOS and Android for mobile stuff?
  • The current name is Windows 10 mobile. No fuzz there. The writer is how ever speculating about the future, and not to lock anything to the current Windows 10 mobile the terme used is Windows-on-phone. I don't see this as much of an issue myself, as the UWP app platform will be the same regardless if it's going to be W10m or W10 on ARM.
  • This is a very bad idea from current CEO. nobody likes it, and no body develops this way. One more failure of the most hated CEO ever.
  • Unless...you're a shareholder . In which case you LOVE the current CEO because he's making you a LOT of money. And that's a problem if you're a Windows Mobile fan, because he's showing shareholders that they can make a TON of money while NOT developing for Windows Mobile.  So if you're a shareholder, and you see greatly increased revenues, and no mobile development, why would you push your CEO to change course?  
  • I could not say it better. this CEO is only there for shareholders. soon microsoft will lose all fans and users and then same shareholders are gonna kick this CEO away Satay naddlla is the CEO that put all of it's effort against microsoft users and fans I HATE HIM
  • Excellent Article Jason!  Now, this is what is needed!
  • Developing for UWP is quite simply a joyful experience, the problem is that there is no money for it. Microsoft needs to have a mobile push and I think it should cut it's desktop fee to 20% and the mobile fee to 0%. If anything perhaps they should simply pay double for mobile downloads instead of a 0% fee. I love UWP but I cannot afford to spend any time developing for it and a large majority of developers are the same, everyone knows the real bucks come from iOS.
  • Excellent article Jason, they need to stop relying on telemetry and analytics. You cannot simply quantify emotional engagement. People are not numbers as long they (Microsoft) keeps treating this as an engineering problem instead of a psychological problem (mind share and consumer engagement - developers and enterprise users are also consumers'). They may not be able to rebuild the bridges they have burnt with the various missteps and silly decisions. They need to focus on their own platform not their competitors. By making their competition more compelling they are undermining themselves. Whether they like it or not, that is the reality. The human psyche is not easily quantified and categorised.
  • Well said, you hit the nail on the head here!
  • I honestly don't think there's a mending that's possible. Not with the current state of the Windows platform at least. Everyone is more than happy to continue to develop Win32 apps but within Microsoft's own ecosystem? Forget it. Why pay royalties to a platform with virtually no market share or support? Here's the problem: Microsoft focused on the desktop first in a world that is rapidly becoming less reliant on desktops. The UWP only makes sense if it ties to a mobile environment and Microsoft simply doesn't have one. I'm not even sure ARM for Windows resolves that unless you can fit those devices in your pocket. The web is more powerful than ever. I can file my taxes online now... For *free*. It calculates everything for me. Why would I ever need a UWP app for stuff like that? Or anything else I can do without the UWP on desktop? That's why developers are done with Windows in terms of "apps." Not only is there literally no need to cater to MS' whims but their implementation of app ecosystem is non-existent in the other areas devs may actually care about. MS has a problem there for sure. It'll be slow, painful decline... But, as people begin to ignore UWP more and more, in time there's a chance they'll simply ignore Windows itself.
  • Yep, MS tried to embrace the new world with Windows 8 but they panicked when everyone didn't immediately upgrade and dumped Windows 8 for Windows 10. That 2 years cost them dear and lost them the phone market.
  • personally I think its more than that. Yeh they need better developer relationship but also very importantly to me is google apps. Also they need to treat their customers a lot beter, no more giving android phones 100gig onedrive storeage and windows mobile users 15 gig, they need to stop being restrictive like they do in edge and not allowing new tabsa to open to the users default home page, they need to stop forcing users to update. More important to me and this is 2 fold they need to stop taking away features and like gesturtes beta or taking so long to put them in rebboted software like 12 months for linked email or callender taking 11 months to get a weekly calender view like they used to both do in 8.1 days. They need to stop releaseing software way to early for user usage like edge or sparten was when it was officially released. Also don't put a edge butone new to the edge new tabs knowing your gone make users accidently click it.
    Do all these things and bring the official you tube app, here maps or google maps with street view then wed be talking, oh and support all your devices for 10 years in updates. I bought a Lumia 930 a flagship device and npow that's left out in the cold, unless I see them supporting their products properly ill not be investing. I hope they do thease things though but 3 years support on a Lumia 930 phone is a suck ass thing to do same as onedrive free storage removal.
  • Great article
  • Well, first of all, I'm a Developer working full time with two platforms: iOS and Windows 10 (UWP). In my opinion, UWP have an incredible Development environment with a notable IDE (Visual Studio), a great language (C#), an incredible easy and readable UI markup language (XAML), a lot of useful native functionality (LINQ, Bindings, Multi-Device capability, etc.), and a default programming paradigm once learned is difficult to abandon (MVVM). Before working with UWPs I was developing for iOS (2 Years of experience) and though I liked it, I never felt in home. In my opinion there as a lot of things on XCode/Objective-C that are more complicated they need to be. When I compare, for example, the way we make responsive UI with Auto-Layout and XAML, i think the second is so massive better I feel dis-motivated when working with the first - my opinion. With Metro/WP Apps I felt more comfortable, and with UWP I felt in home, home sweet home. Everything just make sense to me and I'm always motivated to turn a group of XAML lines into the beautiful UI Design Team sent me, a Storyboard into a smooth and pleasure animation, creating powerful ViewModels and seeing the UI being populated with data via the Bindings ... and finally seeing the same code I wrote once working in different Devices, be them a old PC, a Surface, a Lumia, Xbox One or my Raspberry Pi. Some people may think there are nothing special with it, but for me it was love at first sight. This are my feelings, but, when we crashed with the reality the story changes a lot, and this one is a lot stronger than our likes or wishes. Windows on Mobile is losing Market and wether I liked it or not, the Apps need a strong Mobile Market to grow. At first I thought "Ah, well, with Windows 10 running in x million PC's the UWPs will grow for sure and with their multi-device capabilities they will come to Mobile". I was wrong, it's the opposite way. In PC's wether I believe or not in UWP (I do for sure) the UWPs are cannibalized by Browsers and Win32 Apps wich they run in all previous Windows versions. Maybe, just maybe, Bots and VR are the future, but the "war" was being disputed in the Mobile space yesterday, is being disputed in the Mobile space today, and will be disputed in the Mobile space tomorrow, after tomorrow and probably the following days. Maybe, just maybe (once more), Microsoft is prepared for the long future, but meanwhile they risk to became irrelevant by not appearing in the space where everyone is fighting. Mobile is King, and Microsoft needs to think in one thing: Kids these days, the adults of tomorrow, are growing with Android and iOS - they will know the App Drawer for sure, and the Start Menu, will they?! Returning for the reality that smash in my face everyday, right now I'm working (against my will) in the iOS team, and thought I don't like it, I understand because the Market demand the needs, needs we need to satisfy. The true in my company is that gradually the work in UWPs is disappearing, while the work for iOS and Android growing. We have new Apps where a Windows version is not planned. I always fight for the platform internally, but as I said, I'm just a Developer in a major company that needs to satisfy the Market needs. The major problem, beyond the ones I already left lost in my text, can be resumed with one word: "Trust". All Microsoft behaviors are telling me to just give up, because they (Microsoft) don't believe in their own platform, and worst, they believe in the other's platform. Things like receiving MS Flow months after Android and iOS (when they had IFTTT all the time), MS Garage support to those platforms, running away from Mobile (in their own platform) and a lot of other attitudes. It's not just the retirement from Windows 10 Mobile, it's the simultaneous empowerment of Android and iOS with new features in MS Apps, new Apps, new experiences, etc. leaving their own platform in a limbo. Worst, they are killing UWPs too. Microsoft needs to rethink a lot of their strategy. Even if a savior Surface Phone appears, it will not restore the Trust automatically, following the support from everyone - there will be nothing to save if things continue going this way. We need better Communication to understand each other so we can achieve mutual Trust. In my opinion the next two events (the #Edu Event and //Build) are Key Points. If Mobile is no mentioned, if the situation of W10M is not clarified, if MS don't tell us what they want to do they will enter a no returning point to the consumer Market (probably we are already there). And don't forget, maybe I'm a Dev 40-50 hours Week, but I'm a Consumer too in the remaining time, and the same happens with Business Man's, etc. There are no Professional Market and a Consumer Market, it's a Market as a whole, and I think that's the way MS should look to it if they want our children to see Windows as we saw when we were young. P.S: Sorry for my English.
  • Nadella does not want to understand that there is no longer business and consumers, that the two markets are almost one...
  • Great write up.  While I'm a MS dev at work, when I get home, i need devices that work for me.  Right now windows mobile doesn't do that.  I don't have time to create a workaround app for everything I'd like to do
  • Click bait
  • Developers only love money.
  • They've had far too many ideas that they've canned that people invested in that it will be really tough for them to come back from in the developers' eyes. Going from Windows 8 to 8.1 was painful, so much so I left my app running as 8 because it still worked... I expected similar to go from 8.1 to 10 (whether UWP or Xamarin). They dropped the Windows RT without any upgrade path to 10 though they want us to believe that they'll treat this next generation of ARM better (though if it doesn't sell as well as they want they'll just drop it and you'll be left with another dead device) They forced all Windows Phone 7 users to buy new phones to go to 8, if I recall correctly not every 8 phone was upgraded to 8.1, even less received the upgrade from 8.1 to 10 and now a lot of the phones that did make it to 10 are being dropped for the creator's update, although my super old computers will run 10. When they did upgrade from 7 to 8 to 8.1 to 10 they always took away features that made the phone stand out from their competitors. The cloud first focus (or throw crap against wall and see what sticks approach) has really hurt because it had most of their other teams working on competitors. They killed the Band even though it was successfully selling... though they wouldn't bother even upgrading the features that could be upgraded on the Band that were on the Band 2... then because they made the quality crap dropped out. I assume Hololens will meet a similar fate as Windows RT, Windows Phone, and the Band if it doesn't sell as well as they would like leaving you with a really expensive paper weight. Purely development they seem to want to rework how you write an app almost every time you turn around. They get rid of useful things like XNA, now they seem to really want to get as much stuff out of their core development as possible and push it out to NuGet where it may or may not actually be supported. I rarely ever look at the app store anymore on Window 10 because there just isn't anything there that I need that can't be found elsewhere as a Win32 application... They have to re-earn the developers' trust and I really don't know how they do that.
  • Please fix the command prompt/power shell terminal program. I want to resize the window with a mouse. I want to highlight text over multiple lines. I want command line history to persist after I close the windows. These are basic things that is a huge deterrent to Linux/Mac users.
  • Doesn't Windows do all of this now including support for Linux?
  • As a dev in the making back in 2011, I remember dropping anything Microsoft because we were taking a visual basic course ( a forced course and it was VB 6) and realizing that VB 10 was out wanted instead to learn that in my own time and couldn't have the IDE cause it was licensed... Switched to Java, net beans Linux there we go... Now as a pro how can I be a pro Ms dev?? A case for most of us... Why sell things that benefit you???
  • Folks Developers have to understand that windows 10 has a store and it is not going away. This store is now on hundreds of millions of desktop, laptopa and full Windows OS tablets. That number is growing everyday. so putting an app in the Windows 10 store is putting it in an OS system that's a long term thing  & they can  make money off having their apps there. As far as smart phones are concerned Microsoft has to mix Elements of the Windows 10 mobile OS and the new Windows 10 on ARMS CPU's win 32 Emulation software so future Windows smart phones can run Windows Desktop PC Win 32 Programs their native apps. Microsoft should enable Windows 10 mobile smart phones to use any Windows 10  Desktop PC store  through their Win 32 Emulation soft ware and they will never mis new Window 10 store
  • you don't understand do you? read again the compaints from some devs here in the comments section.
  • MS will never succeed in the consumer phone space. Microsoft simply is not "cool", and Windows is perceived as a dinosaur. At this point, Microsoft is so far removed from consumer mindshare regarding phones, they are even below Blackberry. When your hardware partner (Intel) gives up on mobile chips, you know there is a problem. Putting full Windows on a phone is therefore doomed to fail. I don't care what they call it, but "Cellular PC" is a stupid name anyways. It will be seen as a phone. Even worse, it will be seen as Yet Another Windows Phone, that yet again does not run last year's Windows Phone apps. Plus, no one is clamoring for x86 apps on a 6" touch screen, and it would be futile to attempt to run X86 apps on such a screen. Indeed, they are difficult enough to run on an 11" tablet. Throw in the fact that the x86 apps are running in emulation (see Intel above), and this whole idea looks like what it is - a desperate last gasp attempt, from a company that is truly clueless when it comes to what consumers want. As much as the fanboys here like to dream it, phones are not going away anytime soon. Shrinking a surface tablet and putting a SIM card in it is not the answer, because it STILL won't have the mobile/social apps that a consumer oriented mobile device needs. Thus, mobile developers have no reason to target Windows. "Windows Everywhere" is still just PCs. The consumer mobile market - where all of the current action is as far as developers are concerned - has soundly rejected Windows.
  • Real points there! But blind fanboys will continue to bark crap...
  • Since the rumours of windows on arm are so rife, and it appears that it will be coming, wouldn't this suggest that UWP is a failure and that it's dead? At least between mobile and desktop? Reason I'm asking this is because with full windows on arm, that would mean developers don't need to make mobile apps anymore. They just have the same desktop app handle different form factors.
  • The UI is a particular hurdle to over come. The smaller the device, the harder it is for full OS platforms to be usable. Even with MS Surface products and all of the third party clones, the tablet form factor is still a hard sell without a physical keyboard and touchpad which is also why stylus input still a thing. UWP solves this hurdle but only for the UI aspect and doesn't resolve legacy functionality. Windows on Arm will still need UWP in order to be usable on a phone/tablet form factor. Otherwise what's the point of having a full OS in your pocket? 
  • Get Steve Ballmer back! Developers! Developers! Developers! 😆
  • Why can't anyone at WC get this through their head, MS does not care about this. That guy you put of picture of in this article does not care about UWP or devs or anything else consumer related. This article is all about how MS has failed on every level here, and that is giving them too much credit. These aren't failures, this is a company run by a man who has no interest in the consumer side, and minimal interest in Windows itself. He only cares about cloud and providing software services to enterprise. It's an amazing thing to think about but by laying out how they have utterly failed at this is honestly giving them too much credit. They "failed" so bad that now they have started the whole talking point that phones are on their way out to try and make themselves look smart. The sad part is that editors at WC and half of the fans here have blindly fallen in line with that absurd statement. Tell Apple that phones are old news when they sell 80 million of them next quarter. Tell Samsung that phones are dying when even after the disaster of their last flagship phone, people are drooling all over their latest release. And try telling the 3 billion people using smartphones that phones are dead. Smartphones as we know them are here to stay for a while. Noone is asking for a PC in their pocket but us, noone. Noone wants to worry about Windows Updates, Viruses, Ransomware and driver issues on a PC they are carrying in their pocket. People want an iPhone or a Galaxy with their favorite app. That's it. This is a stupid, made up narrative that MS came up with to try and save face and people that can't think for themselves have bought into it. And while people are falling for that BS, you have a guy running the company that could not care less about you, devs or the OS that you and the devs love. He pulled out of the 1 market that attracts developers. He pulled out of it folks.
  • I honestly thought that MS should have had a spin off company enter the mobile phone game that basically want name MS and shouldn't have MS mentioned or written anywhere on the phone, furthermore Surface should have been just called Surface with a logo that didn't reflect MS, it should have been a great device sold in the MS store just like other OEM products are being sold there; in due time they could have revealed that it was MS product. That could have been reinventing yourself at its finest!
  • Meanwhile, Apple is trying to convert iOS into a MacOS replacement with their iPad Pro and Google is in the process of intergrating a Chrome desktop/Android hybrid. Also Samsung is slowly trying to replace all of their products with Tizen so they can drop Android entirely. Are you sure smartphones will continue or are these companies playing along with the MS narrative? Sounds like a conspiracy to me.
  • It's really simple. UWP, a.k.a. WinRT10, failed like all the previous WinRT versions because they aren't backwards compatible with Windows 7. Developers aren't going to waste their time with a completely different API when they can cover all the bases with Win32. Add to that the fact that MSFT will take 30% of whatever sales they would make with WinRT. My Win32 reseller takes around 6%. The bottom line: more development headaches and lower profit make UWP DOA. The only hope MSFT has to remain relevant is to: 1. Immediately ditch all work on UWP and throw all their weight behind Xamarin 2. Massive marketing of Xamarin to iOS and Android devs 3. Add support for Windows 7 to Xamarin 4. Reduce Store fee to no more than 10% of sales If MSFT can pull devs onto Xamarin then they would effectively control iOS and Android (won't make any direct money off it but profits follow control).
  • Jason, the other side of the coin, MS has not loved its developers in most cases as well. Love isn't ever one sided.
  • Hi Ameet:
    I totally agree.🙂Thanks for stressing that point. I thought I did a good job with outlining in this article some the many ways Microsoft has failed developers, not holding up thier side if the commitment in some instances. I concluded with a call out to Microsoft to acknowledge thier failures, apologize and go forward. This piece was all about that (Microsoft's) side of the coin😄. Thanks for the input Ameet!😎
  • so here's probably a real stupid idiotoc question, but with MS deep cavernous pockets, why haven't they hired people to do nothing but build apps for Windows Mobile? 🤔🤔🤔🤔  
  • Because they fired everyone involved with Windows Mobile and those who weren't fired was either assigned to different projects or they left the company.
  • I work in a .NET shop and we are all excited with the direction Microsoft is taking .NET. I am also very happy with Windows 10.
  • In answer to the headline: Yes, if they get rid of Nutella? ;-)
  • Just silly question, when does Edge become versatile web tool, but not just primitive websites viewer ?
  • Microsoft to say "We're sorry"?? :)) They don't give a damn about users and devs: proven so many times! not once, many times! I won't trust them anymore, no matter what they say....because all they have is a bunch of empty words, lies. First, they need to understand to respect customers and developers! Yes, respect! In my eyes, MS isn't worth a penny! UWP is a failure and will continue to be.
  • This prick can't even wear a tie.
  • With this tempo and insvestments they will kill and surface 2in1. No one whant to use win 32 apps on the tablet!
  • The biggest point is that UWP is pointless. It doesnt ADD anything. Its not better at memory management, process utilization, saving battery, or even UI. Its just a frankenstine windows phone 7 idea, that was just a knee gerk reaction to the mobile success of apple, using the apple walled garden as a template. UWP apps arnt very windows like at all, and dont really belong here. What MS should of done is just make a new ui framework for win32, just like they did with MFC, and WPF, infact the uwp/metro ui is just the wpf reworked to work on all form factors. So instead of locking the new ui framework to the winrt runtime, they should of just let it be ui frame work and let everyone continue to use win32. Imagine how many more apps we would of had if it was just a ui framework. All previous wpf apps would of just had to swap the ui frame work, which would of been very easy as wpf was designed around seperating ui code from the rest of the code anyway. Everything else would of worked just like it would of before, with devs being very familiar with win32, and not having to learn something completly new for no real gain. And again, uwp doesnt provide anything new. It doesnt make batter life better, or any other bs that some people say. You have to remember that even win32 apps are inside of windows. Windows can pause and resume any program as much as it wants as windows has complete control over memory and cpu usage. In fact windows pauses every program 1000's of times a second, and all app memory is already isolated and virtualized. If there was anything that windows 10(UWP) would have to change, it could be handled by the already existing api versioning thats been in windows for over a decade. Windows 10 is complelty free to change the way the api works, just as windows 8, 7, vista, xp has done before it.
  • Isn't this the point of Build? Aren't devs letting Microsoft know the limitations of UWP? Is it possible that UWP be expanded into what you are saying or is it so constrained to not allow these things?
  • The real question is, "how many of you still have faith in Satya"? He's a one trick pony for Azure just like Ballmer was for Windows/office. He's even allowed HoloLens, continuum, Cortana, etc to cool by pushing release dates and focusing only on business customers. How do you think HP feels after choosing W10M now? Nokia was right about MS once he took the reigns.
  • I mean, COME ON....!!! Look at that Nutella's face throughout this article...as if...he is about to cry after all this bloody mess...some one please kick that man's butt! EGG HEAD!
  • Microsoft should create a new 64bit File System which run .appx, .apk, .ipa natively
    Game Over Windows is a productive platform where apps, software's are created
    iOS, android devices are consuming devices. Microsoft should embrace android for success
    winux platform is the future
  • why would devs love a platform that MS doesn't have any committment to is the question
  • I am a developer. In order for me to return to the windows ecosystem it would take for the current idiot CEO (aka Staya Nadella) to step down and reboot Microsoft to focus on quality.
  • As a C# and.NET developer (XNA games on Windows Phones and Silverlight LoB), it was Build 2011, that signalled the end of .NEt developer love. They dumped .NET in favour of Javascript and a return C++.  Then left many of us cold.  They never recovered the Mobile environemnt with the switch from WP7, to WP8 to W10 Mobile. Only Xamarin loved C#, and so we moved to developing Android, which is the future.  We [Developers] all know Android is the future, as it will obviously take on more desktop centric capabilities. Windows is just legacy. Developers have moved on, they are not comming back to Windows.  
  • I'm on the Silverlight LoB boat as well and can't leave because everyone is on Windows 7.  Visual Studio 2017 not opening my projects is another kick in the pants from Microsoft.  I knew Android was going surpass windows, but I didn't think it would be this quick.
  • Yes, how many other developers were screwed by Microsoft dropping Silverlight? I think it was the best platform I have used in 40+ years of coding. And it has spoiled me for using any other technology to make web apps. Instead, the years spent getting good at Silverlight are just thrown away. Which I almost wouldn't mind if something better were available, but I haven't seen anything better yet. And I think one of the factors killing Silverlight was that they couldn't monetize it through the store. But what developers can afford to give up a large fraction of profits to the store. It is an example of screwing developers and mightily discouraging devs.
  • Satya Nadella should be replaced. He's not right for the job.
  • ask MS why they dont build for windows 10 :) how can we win back MS trust in windows 10..RIP
  • A decent summary. As a developer I'd like to add the mental strain of trying to quickly learn everything there is to learn about the platform only to have it all declared useless before you are done. Developers don't need that ****, we have enough things to learn about, and while inevitably some of that knowledge will become useless, rarely this fast. It takes 3-4 years to get intimate with a platform, to have both the required knowledge and supporting tools (both internal and 3rd party) and services for truly efficient development. Another point is MSs insistence on their own API designs for everything, some unification there would go a long way (already has in some respects).
  • It's crazy how a company like Fitbit took so long into creating their UWP app only to see their efforts wasted on Windows 10 mobile. At least they can continue supporting the app on Windows 10 moving forward and maybe take full advantage of Cshell on Windows if that's still being developed. If Andromeda/ One Core changes the UI, can it cause devs to lose interest fast?
  • Resignation of Satya will be a start, a firm commitment to mobile with yearly releases of hardware in premium, budget and cheap phones. No rehash of the OS for at least 2 years :)
  • Microsoft should consider democratizing the app store paradigm on its OSes. By this, I mean to allow different app stores, such as Steam or GOG, to supply apps. Maybe MS wants what Apple has, but it has demonstrated to not have a good grip on it. By partnering with the stores that actually have traction on desktop, perhaps MS can help them expand to different form factors too!
  • The idea is to let those companies expand their businesses (traditionally supplying games) into a broader set that not even Android is encouraging.
  • See this is where their plot comes into play. Make things difficult for the developer to sabotage windows mobile. Then all of Microsoft shall fall then
  • Yes get rid of satya please he is the devils advocate and he knows it. WE WILL NEVER WANT ANYTHING ELSE BUT ALL WINDOWS PERIOD
  • Satya or Satan what ever name you go by these days first of all **** you second **** you more this **** him forever get his ass out of there ******* sellout
  • 1) drop that 30% fees to 0%
    2) fire out Nadella
    3) pay me 4 years of work
  • Did MS abandon the Android bridge solely b/c of current developer backlash? If they did apparently it wasn't worth it.
  • MS abandoned the android bridge because it worked too well especially on Windows 10 mobile and will ultimately lead to devs not making UWP apps at all. Considering that everyone is abandoning Windows Phone including MS themselves, UWP will need to be adopted in order for Windows on mobile to succeed. Windows 10 S is most likely a way to force devs to focus developing apps using UWP instead of just making traditional program apps or even bicentenial apps but even this will only work if Windows 10 S becomes popular with the user base in the next year. Windows on arm will benefit more with UWP even though it will have the ability to run legacy apps but if devs see the potential benefits of UWP over x32 programing, then this wil cascade into Windows being a competitive platform for mobile devices. Apple is trying to do the same with iOs which explains their weird iterations of MacOS PCs these past couple of years and reason why Google is trying to intergrate Android into chrome desktop or make their own Android for desktop.
  • I'll wait till next public event at Build 2017 to see what Microsoft has to say. I just hope all of these talks are only rumors. Thinking of the OS as a UWP sounds weird to me the idea of cutting the phone business. Maybe they are going to ralent their investments in new smartphones, but they will continue upgrading the features for phones to bring the same experience across all its platform. The transition to this new platform has been painful for the Company as well as loyal users, but I think it's worth time and finally will bring us to a successful end. Once the platform is consolidated, Xamarin will be the key for developers to spread the apps across all kinds of devices.
  • I don't think removing Satya Nadella is a solution to anything. Rather, when he took over fro Balmer, many people predicted exciting timesfor MS and frankly speaking the overall performance of MS as an organization is pretty decent and much better than in Balmer's days despite deciling sales of PCs. Solution for mobile, and with it the developer apathy, is quite simple: get more users. Only way to do that is 'incentiviize' people who buy windows phones AND incentivize developers who build UWP apps. If despite being the least favored and least sold of the three OSs, MS charges its custoemrs and developers in a manner more suited to the market doinator, then it is bound to fail. And everyday, my fear of demise of windows on phones keeps getting stronger and stronger.
  • The first question that Microsoft should ask is "what do the developers want?" then it probable that the relationship could be restored.
  • Satya, kill Windows Phones, no one likes them, no one is developing for them, and those who do have NO clue what they're getting into until it's too late. Build a positive symbiotic relationship with Android cause whatever you're doing now, it isn't working and won't work anytime soon.