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Microsoft working on Paint 3D for Windows 10 Mobile, currently in alpha

While Windows Insiders can already get their hands on a preview version of the new Paint 3D app (opens in new tab) that is coming with the Windows 10 Creators Update, a similar preview for Mobile isn't yet available. However, Windows Insider head Dona Sarkar has confirmed that a Windows 10 Mobile version of the app is in development, and is currently in the alpha stage.

Paint 3D

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When the Creators Update was revealed at the Microsoft's October Windows 10 event, Windows 10 Mobile didn't fetch much attention, so the status of a Paint 3D app for the platform was a bit of a mystery. While there's no word on when we can expect a similar preview for Mobile to be available for Insiders, it's good to have public confirmation that it's being worked on. Expect the Paint 3D app for Mobile to eventually make its way out to Insiders with a future Creators Update build.

Hands-on with the new Paint 3D app for Windows 10

In the meantime, WindowsBlogitalia (via WinBeta) appears to have obtained a look at what the mobile Paint 3D app may look like. It's unclear if this is a mock-up or a genuine screenshot, but you can take a look in the image below.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the Editor in Chief for Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl. Got a hot tip? Send it to daniel.thorp-lancaster@futurenet.com.

100 Comments
  • I've been hoping for a version of Paint for my phone forever now... So now that Paint 3D is UWP and in early dev for mobile, I'm very excited. :-)
  • Me too
  • me three
  • I want Alpha Ring for things to try out! Has kinda nice ring to it ;)
  • Excellent news this. My main concern/question was whether the Paint 3D app on PC is actually a UWP app from the ground up (which would be the best example of the power of UWP apps so far) or whether it is a Win32 app that is distributed through the store within the Centenial UWP wrapper type of application. Sounds like it's "native" UWP if there's a mobile version in Alpha. Really want to see this Windows 3D Scanning app come to phones to see whether it's as good as they showed at the event - I'm not 100% sure she scanned in that image of the sandcastle on stage since she'd already created the final scene to improve the flow of the demo
  • Wonder what kind of hardware will be required for it to perform decently? I, for one, am waiting with bated breath!
  • A Surface kind of hardware maybe?☺
  • With this hint, it feels like there will be a W10M device that supports pen!!! :D Paint 3D only make sense to use with a pen. Yes fingers may work but the point is you have to actually use something to effectively make art. ....hopefully since we have Fresh Paint for a long time which didn't indicate any WP8.X having any pen enabled device. Hopefully this time will, it must happen.
  • Yes, this would be fun om my 6.5" Surface "Phone" Pro....
  • Great news!!! Windows 10 Mobile still alive
  • Sure. With only MS supporting it with apps and updates.
  • There's always one...
  • Hahahaha
  • That would actually work, if they started making the apps that we are missing. =P  
  • Eh they tried that. Google shut em down when they tried to make YouTube loll
  • Didn't they come up with some poor excuse that would have caused MS to have to redevelop the app. I use YouTube apps on Xbox, and Roku stick and honestly the mobile websites offers a better experience - In some situations the website really is good enough
  • My bank has supported WP8.1 for a long time and just released a UWP app - So it's not such glum news for all of us. Some are very happy right now
  • She didn't say it was for W10M. She could have meant Android or iOS. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • "However, Windows Insider head Dona Sarkar has confirmed that a Windows 10 Mobile version of the app is in development, and is currently in the alpha stage."
  • That is the article. The actual tweets are not that specific. I am sure she meant W10M though. Just poking fun. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Mobile means W10M for Dona :P :D She uses it as daily driver :D
  • Ah, ok.   Sorry, I thought maybe you had just skimmed the article and misread it. I realize you are usually more thorough than that, thats why I wasn't more of a smartass with the response. =P
  • The mockup image suggest it will be for W10M though, unless a blatant intentional misleading.
  • Well, they demo'd 3D Capture on Win10M.
  • My bet is that it comes to all mobile platforms, along with the 3D Capture app - The mission is to enable these experiences for everybody
  • Pretty cool. But it would make more sense if Windows Ink would be finally available on mobile.
  • Windows Ink on mobile would be a killer app :)
  • Windows ink cannot be an app. Windows ink is an OS function.
  • If 3D is coming, you can bet ink is too ...seems like Surface Phone is just around the corner.
  • lol - BLESS!!  
  • I hope you are right.... Nevertheless, as we continue to use the term "Surface Phone" I wonder if MS might decide it should be called something other than just a phone... Satya says he doesn't want to be some guy that makes just another Phone, or something like that... Plus, the way MS has been acting lately they don't want to have anything to do with the concept of current popular technology. They seem to figure if they can't win in specific segments, then they will create their own. I believe that if MS DOES make a Surface mobile device they would not call it Phone (although, it would technically be called a damn phone)... I think MS might find some term to describe a universal, or central W10 mobile device that can "continue" from one aspect of life to another as needed... I have no idea what that word would be, and it actually seems like it would be hard to get it right.. If this is the case I think MS's biggest challenge would be getting people to call it what it is, and not a phone... BUT!!! And, a big but this would be;;;;; but, if MS can create this perfected, super appealing, mobile continuum, device, they would have created a new segment in mobile devices... And, the last time they did that it worked... Think about that. How could this device simple be called a phone when it does so much more? That's like calling a smartwatch just a watch, or a Surface Studio just a computer. I bet, I know,, this is what MS is thinking, and this is what they want for 2020. They might just be ahead of the curve this time.
  • Surface AIO is actually a phone!!??
  • Guess they'll follow HP with the naming, and will call it 3in1 :D
  • Right. Why over think it. Good point.
  • Yepers
  • The way I see it, if MS really was abandoning mobile, they wouldnt put their resources into bringing Paint 3D to mobile and if theyre bringing Paint 3D, it's a no brainer that Ink will follow as well, one reason being Paint uses inking second being Microsoft wants the sams experience throughout their ecosystem, thirdly, Ink is definitely a differentiator feature that could be used as one of the selling points over the other platforms. You bring up an interesting point Rodneyej regarding the name and I think you might be right, they most probably would opt for a unique name for the Surface Phone for the reasons you stated, they would want the consumer to know this is more than just a smartphone. The ONLY reason I could see them stick with the likes of Surface Phone for a name, is that they want to make it clear that it's primarily a phone. That said, Surface has been targeting niche audience, so it could very well be they expect the users who want such a device to know of it's existence. Surface Communicator, Surface Talk, Surface Call, Surface Pocket, Surface Cell ..just some i could think of that would be different but still send the message across that its a phone. Either way, I look forward to what they bring to the table and after the Surface Studio reveal, my interested grew even more!
  • I agree.
    We need to stop saying that they are abandoning the consumer market.. MS is still targeting the consumer, although maybe not the general consumer. They are targeting consumers who want a device that has real productive capabilities, and can help them grow thier business, or excel their career, or do best in school... MS's vision for a phone is that it should be an important tool that you need, enjoy, and ultimately can't live without, rather a toy that's popular for the time being, and gets lost in the sea of other toys..
    .......
    The thing is that probably 50% of iDroid users really need, want, and could greatly benefit, from MS's idea of a mobile 3i1.... That is why MS having their own example (Surface Phone), and marketing, are so important. Their are millions of business minded people who don't have time to even know, or care, about Snapchat, or Pokémon go. Honestly, I would say at least 30% of current iDroid smartphone users would be fine with a Lumia 950.. They just are not sold one. They don't know about it. This is why I always say that even without apps WP could've had at least 20% market share from Android if marketing/ product placement were sufficient.
  • Yes, very well said.
  • Beautifully said, @rodneyej. That seems to be consistent with Panos' approach to devices too. Not sure how many people saw, but there was a video here on Windows Central a few months ago where Ben "PC Guy" Rudolph took us on a walk-through of the design center with Panos. There were several references to the phone/mobile work that Panay's team was working on, with a lot of "too secret, we're not going to talk about that today." There's certainly something intriguing brewing there.
  • Yep. I agree.... Where is Ben Rudolf anyways❓❓❓❓❓❓
  • Really. What happened to him?
  • He was the face of a failed platform.. Him, and Joe. They had to remove them from their mobile "face" to put that failure in the past... Now, you see Panos.... Although, Panos has an odd "car salesman" characteristic to him. Lol. But, he's cool. Can't complain.
  • Ben's a solid guy. Microsoft is lucky to have him.
  • Yes we like him... He's cool. But, you know he has an iPhone now.. Hehehe :D
  • Which I'm hoping this might be a hint that pen support is coming to W10M. Hopefully it will and not just like having Fresh Paint doodling with our fingers. Pen support is a long overdue since Windows Phone days. A company that brags pen capability and good about implementing is baffling that they don't do this on their mobile platform for a long time.
  • There are a lot of things MS does, that are good, that they could implement in mobile... Mainly, a plethora of desktop features that would be super useful on mobile. The fact is, while W10 mobile is running W10 W10m should be the most feature rich mobile OS in the world.. It should EASILY put Android to shame.
    .........
    The fact that MS (imo) has slowed down development of WM, and has practically stoped bringing over new features from desktop, might be a hint they plan to make a x86 mobile device with full on W10... Why would you continue to mess with your mobile OS when you already have one that is hammered out feature wise? And, this would signify a more unified approach to continuum. I believe full on Windows10 on a "phone" is their ultimate goal... Sort of a W10Mv2.0
  • Fast ink! Great Substitute till then.
  • W10 mobile needs pen support. Now would be the perfect time, right after the Note 7 incident.
  • The more that time passes and I see more and more UWP apps that don't run on W10 Mobile until months after their PC variants launch, if ever, the more and more skeptical I become about UWP as a solution to the app gap. They made it sound like it was going to be as simple as 'checking a few boxes', but clearly it is not that simple. Them pulling back from Windows Phone in 2013 just as it was starting to take off (> 5% global share, including dozens of markets with double-digit share and ahead of iPhone) was foolish. They may never get back to that now. And what was once at least a somewhat tolerable app gap has been progressively exacerbated ever since.
  • I do agree, but at the same time the 3D paint app for W10 hasn't been released yet. It looks like it is just in a further point of testing than the mobile counterpart is.
  • why does everyone sees the future in apps? I mean Google and latest Apple too presented one app (ok on the Apple TV) that combines all related Information from different Apps in one. Think about the web and think about an app that combines e.g. for photos for all of your flicker, 500px, snapchat etc. activities and libraries in one.
    Then there's no need for dedicated app developmen any longer because of the OS app.
    And for news, convertion & translation, videos, podcasts and music as well as search there'll be an assistant / AI / bot / browser that'll help you out.
    Similar to Outlook, where I integrated my Outlook as well as my Mac and iCloud email addresses. Only problem might be the limited high speed data plan / volume which are available now. But I'm sure this will change..
  • Yes, I would love for everything to be intergrated with the OS, but we have seen where MS sometimes fails in their plan.
  • It's not realistic to have everything or too many functionalities integrated to OS. Also ecosystem is important and giving any developers a chance to develop apps and make business with the chosen platform. You can only do so much with the OS. It's not meant or design to do everything.
  • Because this is the concept how we use and functions on modern OS? Apps are just software installed to the OS, so does will be boys and other things. Apps are executable software that is convenient for everybody that packaged the functionality it offers, managed by the system. Let's say on desktop OSes we rely on different softs of apps/executable software to do the task we want. Each app is specialized and optimized for the specific or multiple task. Apps are compiled and optimized to the system and also the hardware while being efficient. Web apps aren't all that efficient and in terms of UI, web are unfortunately still not best for touch and other forms of computer interaction as they are inconsistent and non-standard. Not to mention web apps are just another layer of codebase that will run over the web browser, which is just an additional layers of overhead to system resources. If you mean an app that served multiple functions and have API for integrations from another services or apps, that's like the Hub concept from Windows Phone which is sadly gone I wish it would return. Even still, it relies on apps as Hubs can only do so much and not every user will stick to 1st-party offering.
  • "While Windows Insiders can already get their hands on a preview version of the new Paint 3D app" can we? How?
  • D'oh, meant to link to it in that sentence; added now. Also: https://www.microsoft.com/store/p/paint-3d-preview/9nblggh5fv99
  • Thanks Dan. Downloading now for a play :)
  • Awesome news!  How long before Beta testing? or will this be insiders?
  • They did show a demo of the coolest part of the Creator Update....the 3D scanning app.....running on Windows 10 Mobile. So, it's not like this is really a surprise.
  • Yes, but will the 3D scanning happen in Pant 3D or in the Camera app or in another app altogether?
  • It's a separate app.
  • YES!  Even on my 950XL, the screen is too small to create much.  Displaying of 3D content would be cool on mobile device though.  Before that... get that scanner running!
  • Agreed. Scanner would be great to have to capture items in 3D and then transfer those to the computer to work on then.
  • Cool cool cool! Although, anyone could have guessed that the app is based on UWP and thus can easily be brought to mobile. But the bigger news is this gesture of goodwill on Microsoft's part on bringing it to their meagre mobile user share. Kinda sorta also shows how Microsoft is still invested in Windows on this form factor (phones, small tablets) and (particularly) Windows on ARM, even if they aren't seem to be trying to aggressively push hardware based on windows 10 mobile. Also, does that mean we will finally get to see native Windows Ink(ing) integration into mobile SKUs? About time. Kinda late for a company which loves digital pens and inking.
  • Now this is some exciting news
  • Id love this for continuun
  • Well im pretty sure that will be on iOS and Android too but im also sure that i will not be able to run it on my 640 XL
  • Well i hope paint is only the start :D and other apps catchupp like photos etc. ^_^
  • Love to know when that 3D scanning app will be available. Love to test it.
  • This alone proves that mobile is NOT dead.
  • but 3rd party windows apps will at some point....
  • If it weren't for UWP, it sure would be
  • hey Microsoft, why don't you go straight to the point and release paint 3D for android and iOS. we all know you're gonna do that anyways so might as well be honest about it and not waste your time making an app for windows 10 mobile. P.S. you do realize that you own windows 10 mobile right?
  • They already said they were during the event.. They just didn't mention WM..
  • I watched the event. They mentioned it. They also used a HP Elite x3 to do the 3D scan.
  • The surface phone is needed , Imagine having full blown windows 10 on your device with a stylus? You can install windows apps etc on your device and continuum would be perfected. I do believe it is in the works , Once the surface phone is out I can't see many objections on it as itl probably sell , but price needs to be right.
  • Yes, and you could hold it comfortably with one, and draw... Could be a logo artist dream.
  • Think about that. If the Surface phone runs full blown windows, Windows Mobile and Continuum are irrelevent. Full blown Windows can do everything that mobile can, so what would be the point of the mobile version of the OS? Continuum provides nothing that you can't already do with full windows, second screen, different app on device and second screen, wired or wireless (miracast) second screen. The need for Windows Mobile right now is to run on ARM, the typical phone processor architecture. The feasibility of an x86/64 based mobile device is still a bit iffy. The intel compute sticks, Kangaroo PCs, indicate it is getting closer, but none of these have stellar battery life even without driving any display.  
  • I think your initial "if" question describes something that isn't in the near future.
  • if this app will come to android and ios too, then w10m is over.
  • If that was the case W10M would've been done a long time ago... No need to worry about that... All that does is make W10M that less needed. Which also is bad.
  • .
  • MS will release the beta on WM and later the full version on iphone and android. :-/
  • After this years conference Microsoft have set a benchmark for all other operating systems just have to work on other windows phone os too cz and if they improve in that they can easily get their throne back. A request for windows please make a next level improvement in u n ur app store i want u to take over the market of android.
  • Do any one know how she scanned that sand castle with HP Elite Xl?
  • With an app that is in development. Watch the presentation video. She did it live, though the live result may not be what was ultimately used in the other portions of that section.
  • I want to know when the 3D capture app will be available
  • Once alpha, forever alpha
  • I have the same question how a phone can capture 3d image is that real.
  • Watch the demo.
  • Isn't a 3D image capture just a series of photos?   I realize that more features (like movement) require more points for the camera to follow, hense dots on a face or body, but for stationary object I would imagine its kind of like a panoramic capture.
  • Does a panoramic photograph capture depth?
  • Well, that's why I said "kind of like", obviously there is more to it than that. Whatever program they desgined for it probably uses the picture to esitmate depth.
  • The focus data can be applied to multiple points, bringing in real depth information. In the demo, they walked around the item capturing depth enhanced images and putting them together into a 3D object.
  • Pretty much what I was thinking... Thanks.
  • still hoping paypal here maps and google apps come to windows mobile.  Android is just not as good as windows mobile even with the crapy hamburger menu and gestures beta still not suporting windows 10 mobile.
  • PayPal is not gonna come as internal discussions till now have led to a conclusion that no app support would be continued due to very little percentage of users.
  • Google though a ***** knows where and what to invest. Windows mobile will no way attract them seeing the users. Further, Microsoft has further blocked the opportunity as it has provided all the services what Google has to provide in a half baked way.
  • Microsoft need to really make developer tools free and provide a open ecosystem if they want to see their apps rise. No one wants to pay for the developer tools to build apps which is going to be used by less than 1℅ of users.
  • The developer tools are already free. It's called Visual Studio Community Edition. You can also quickly build a simple app with no coding on https://appstudio.windows.com/