Windows apps on iOS and Android - The future of Windows 10 may be virtualization

Interestingly enough the next after this article was published Microsoft acquired Xamarin. Xamarin is a well-known company that creates software tools for making apps for iOS, Android and Windows platforms that can share common code.

Microsoft's vision of Windows as a Service (WaaS) may be more than just a steady stream of updates to users of the Windows 10 operating system. Virtualization of Windows 10 across many devices may be the ultimate end goal by Redmond according to my sources.

Such a plan would certainly give new meaning to Universal Windows Platform (UWP).

HP Elite x3 and virtualized Windows 10

HP Elite x3

Early signs of the virtualization approach are already being implemented with the forthcoming HP Elite x3 smartphone running Windows 10 Mobile. That phone was just announced this week at Mobile World Congress. While the Elite x3 cannot run classic Windows desktop apps directly, it can run them indirectly through HP's Workspace technology. With that program users can run legacy apps through the cloud to the phone.

HP believes the ultimate future for enterprise is with the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) but acknowledge that many Win32 apps may never be rewritten to Microsoft's preferred platform.

HP Workspace works by creating a collection of desktop apps that run remotely on a server. Companies then let employees run virtualized desktop apps through the cloud to the Elite x3 via Continuum and the HP Mobile Extender or HP Desk Dock. Part of the reason why the Elite x3 does not launch until later this summer is so that HP can work with companies on virtualizing their legacy software in anticipation of device deployment.

HP Workspace is essentially a more sophisticated version of Remote Desktop, but the backend and connection are secured since it can leverage Citrix. The reason so many companies are reportedly interested in the Elite x3 is due employees being able to access sensitive data and applications through one protected device.

While current 'bring your own device' (BYOD) programs exist in corporate environments, they occur in response to the lack of a viable and secure alternative and not because an iPhone or Android device is a superior solution. The promise of a Windows-everywhere future, however, could turn the tide of such programs should HP's Elite x3 prove to be successful.

Limitations, of course, are present with virtualization, but it does steer clear of the need to run a phone using x86 Intel hardware. Microsoft and Intel are exploring such devices but there is no evidence that either company is close to releasing a phone that could replicate an actual "PC in the pocket".

As an alternative, Microsoft's Azure cloud service and virtualized environments can do the heavy lifting so that a Windows phone (via Continuum) becomes an end-terminal while accomplishing the same goal.

It should be noted that HP's solution does require remote servers hosting the PC software and is not available to regular consumers.

Universal apps and two-way Bridges

According to sources familiar with Microsoft's plans the company is reportedly exploring extending its Hyper-V and App-V virtualization software to different OSs including iOS and Android.

The intended purpose would be to let consumers run some version of Windows – and apps - through all devices via a type of micro-Hyper-V or App-V environment. Just how such a feat is going to be accomplished is beyond the scope of this article, but it sounds very much like Windows Bridges in reverse.

Last year, Microsoft unveiled their Bridges plan during Build 2015 for bringing apps to Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile from other ecosystems. At the time, there were four Microsoft Bridges in early development proposed for developers:

  • Project Westminster - For porting Web apps
  • Project Centennial - For porting Classic Win32 apps
  • Project Islandwood - For porting iOS apps
  • Project Astoria - For emulating Android apps

However, in November of last year I reported that Astoria was put on hold indefinitely due to a variety of reasons and that is still the case.

What Microsoft did not discuss in 2015, conversely, was any plans to go in the opposite direction: how to bring Windows apps to iOS and Android. Microsoft could continue to write such apps natively, but what if there were another way?

Taking the bridge metaphor of being a two-way system to its logical conclusion would make sense for the company. Virtualization of the OS and apps would be a plausible route as many of the technologies needed to implement such a system already exist.

It is not yet clear if this Windows app virtualization is something that Microsoft will talk about this year at Build, but it is possible. Microsoft's Build conference for developers is set to take place March 30 through April 1 in San Francisco.

Assuming this information is correct – and I have little reason to doubt it - Microsoft would be able to have Windows apps (and maybe even Windows 10) run on competing platforms thus making 'universal apps' truly live up to their name. Once implemented, such a system would give more incentive to developers to make and distribute Windows apps (UWP) due to the larger consumer base reached. However, to get the native experience users would be incentivised to use a 'true' Windows 10 Mobile device. Thus, this strategy would boost the Windows Store and Windows 10 as a whole.

Finally, it should be noted that many of the Bridge technologies proposed last year have yet to become a reality for developers (e.g. Centennial and Islandwood) so there is no telling when this Windows OS and app virtualization project could be implemented.

The prospect of running Windows apps on any platform someday is certainly tantalizing, and it looks to be an increasingly plausible one too. Hopefully, we'll hear more about these efforts shortly.

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been here covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics and ran the projectors at movie theaters, which has done absolutely nothing for his career.

  • MS can't even be bothered to port there apps to w10
    Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10 But either way virtualization must be the big news everyone is expecting.
  • "MS can't even be bothered to port there apps to w10"
    I'm really doubting your read this article thoroughly and thought out the positive implications for Windows 10 Mobile.
  • Well it's still an issue if they can't use islandwood or whatever it's called to say bring sway to mobile clearly Wm in its current form is dead.
    I know they are in this for a 5yr plan where more and more folks just have a phone and ccontinuum is the future regardless of what anyone feels right now.
    Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • You don't understand what this article is about, this is to virtualize Windows 10 desktop on Android, iOS and Windows 10 Mobile, the possibilities to help our busy lives and have our work office at home with remote access solution from a keyboard + monitor + mouse +´smarphone is more close to what it is today, where we need to carry our heavy laptop home and take care it doesn't get stolen, broken or lost.
  • I get that I like that.
    I was ******** off topic. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • The Article talks about a possible benefit, but what about the more likely negative position MS could put itself in... If other platforms already have all the mobile apps, and then could run all the windows apps, and windows10,, what incentive does that give developers, or consumers, to go with windows ever?? Why would developers write apps when everything is already there?... Because they have to go with a WP to get a native experience? What? Has anyone ever cared before? Or maybe this article is speaking waaaau ahead in the future when Windows has apps.. Like 10 years from now.. IDK
    iOS, And Android, would definitely become THE all in one devices, overnight, and MS would've just shot itself in the foot again..... This might work, but it seems to me that it might hurt even more. I can't believe Daniel didn't touch on that OBVIOUS POSSIBILITY in the article.. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Honestly can't get much worse
  • I'm an optimist! - Of course it can get worse. Everything that MS put their hands on turns into sourcream.....
  • Nope buddy. What it meant was ability to "vertualize" the windows apps on other platforms. So creating one app could provide service to is and android at the same time by virtualization. Again. Virtualization is a limitation. So it will be always preferable to do job hassle free and go for the device which already have those apps build for.
  • I worry about that as well, but I am hoping that once Windows apps run on every platform, there will not be a strong reason to build apps natively for iOS/Android anymore, as it will be easier to just build a Windows app that runs on everything. The trick will be, as you said, getting the phone division's foot in the door so that people will actually switch to a native Windows device.
  • @rodneyej: Ok, i think you're missing certain implications for a developer. In the current state, I could develop one app for iOS, one app for Android, and *maybe* an app for Windows and none of that work is shared except maybe between iOS and Windows. However, in the new concept, I could write one app for Windows and that will literally hit every device. It completely turns on its head how big the audience is for a Windows app. If it turns out that more developers do that, more and more apps may be written in Windows. The audience becomes almost 100% reachable with Windows. Why write an Android or iOS app now? As a consumer, if developers keep just making Windows apps, I could get a better experience with a Windows phone. Some perks are probably better integration with Office 365, PC integration, and Cortana integration. The developer incentive is huge and that could easily sway consumers after awhile.
  • I was surprised when I got an email from Microsoft announcing Meet MileIQ by Microsoft.  It is not in the Windows App Store, but you can get it from Google Play.  How does that help app gap?   Meet MileIQ by Microsoft Having trouble reading this message? Click here. Meet MileIQ by Microsoft MileIQ is the leading automatic mileage tracking app that saves people an average of $6,500 per year in business mileage deductions or reimbursements and hours of time each week. As part of Microsoft’s mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more, we’ve recently welcomed MileIQ to the Microsoft family. Try MileIQ for Free.  
  • I think this goes back to Daniel's old article about WP being dead. It died with McLaren. Now, we will just have device-agnostic Windows. I'm not worried about Windows mobile future at all. It' won't be WP per say, it mobile must be a core of their strategy for future, since all is going mobile. It jsut won't be WP as we know it today, That's all. MSFT lost the phone battle years ago adn finally gave up on it and are focusing on what comes after the "phone". That's the exciting part. Agree with pjhenry. This should prompt devs to actually build more apps for Windows. not the other way around. Build a single UWP app and let it be virtualized for other OSs.
  • The issue is Islandwood needs to be updated to support the latest iOS API set. It's just not ready for developers.
  • I'm guessing Apple are not making that very easy for Microsoft to do. Or even particularly ​possible.
  • Not sure how this would have any postive implications for W10M, doesnt this totally negate the need for it?
  • That's what I thought at first too until I read the full article (not saying you did or didn't read it). The article talks about Windows being used virtually on other devices running iOS and Android. Does this mean good things for the hardware? Probably not, but it has huge implications for W10m. If the virtualization works, then Microsoft finally has the "one ring" to rule all devices. Why wouldn't a developer make apps for Windows knowing that one app would run on any device? That is the idea behind the WUP plan, but expand that to a phone, tablet, etc. that doesn't natively run Windows 10 and you really have something. I hope this is what they're doing, but time will tell. Long story short: create a WUP app and that app can be used via virtualization on any device in the world. No need to code for multiple systems or make tweaks for a specific device.
  • This is assuming it works as you think. They made the same bold claims for their current bridges from ios (and android) yet they turned out in reality not to be so easy. And the question still remains, if devs arent targeting Windows now why would they target Windows in this new scenario? Its a huge assumption to make that devs will switch from their current environment to Windows with the promise of virtualized apps, they have done a poor job so far of convincing devs to work on Windows 10 why would that change now?
  • FWIW I have heard very positive things about Islandwood despite the obvious drawbacks (can only code to iOS7 level); but if they continue down this road I think it's just a matter of time. Centennial is a lot more interesting, but we have yet to see something tangible. Video games e.g. Lara Croft and GoW are interesting signs at least.
  • Islandwood requires a Windows instance. No iOS dev I know has one or plans to get one. Also, because of the lack of a clear message, most app devs are still waiting for being able to simply deploy their droid app to Windows. Centennial is a repackaging and deployment toolkit. Afaik, it won't make Win32 work automagically on mobile, it will only give a nice entry. The bridges up to now are a disaster.
  • Damn man. Previously MS can't penetrate the phone market. Now they can target every phone of the market and any other phone coming to the market. Only experienced one can do this.
    "Resistance is futile , you will be assimilated" again damn true words. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Daniel,  what do you mean can only code to IOS7?  like you can only use apps from IOS7? 
  • Apple came our with the Swift language around iOS 8, so anything developed with that language won't convert yet. Microsoft is working on a bridge for it.
  • It's not like we have a fixed group of developers from here on to eternity. For old timers yes, don't expect them to go out of their comfort zones. But if I'm a new developer and this is already set in place and working, I would certainly choose to develop in Windows knowing iOS and Android users can also run Windows apps on their devices. Why would I limit my app to just iOS or Android if I can make it run on all three?
  • Because each has its own strengths
  • Strengths in app development? Like what? So if I'm an aspiring developer and all this virtualization thing is setup and working, what's a good reason why I should choose Android or IOS development to create my apps rather than Windows?  
  • I'm glad someone understands :) I can see this getting an easy foot hold in enterprise, which will allow for bumps to be smoothed out. Microsofts cloud platform could really be the star of the show!
  • Yup, this is probably meant for business apps. I also hope they will release RemoteApp for UWP at some point. That would be a really elegant way of running UWP apps off a server.
  • Many people talk about the App Gap. Windows Mobile has an App Gap because it has a bigger problem, A Developer Gap. Building 2-way bridges is a way for Microsoft to recapture developers. Having programmed for all 3 platforms, I found that Microsoft's development tools where a step above the other dev environments. Microsoft lost the App battle because they didn't make the developer a priority. Developers don't just want to develop and release their app on 1 platform, just like Microsoft. Building a 1-way bridge that only helped developers that don't give 2 sht's about Windows was a slap in the face for all us Microsoft Developers. So this move is the win future developers and perhaps convert a few over. I have always said, you would have to really hate Windows and Microsoft to build a Universal Windows App and only release it on Andorid and iOS.
  • Yeah, seems like it would hurt more than anything... SMDH.. This would be MS's idea to kill off Surface because who would need Surface if they could now run Windows 10 from their iPad (which they already love, and don't want to give up)... This article seems to be our nightmare!... Lol....
    I hope I'm understanding Daniel wrong. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • If they already love the iPad, they're not using a Surface anyway. Microsoft would rather an iPad running Windows as opposed to an iPad with only iOS on it. Once the individual uses Windows on an iPad, they become a much easier target to switch to the Surface. Remember, Microsoft is *not* mainly hardware. Microsoft is trying to push software as a service *everywhere* and this fits in with that perfectly. The fact that it would possibly bring people over to hardware natively running windows is just gravy. This is *not* a nightmare. This is amazing. I don't know if you're looking at it correctly. Developers can reach *every* user in *every* device group. Consumers would eventually follow the developers.
  • Indeed. Different approaches and ideas are needed. HP is taking initiative with their business offering and enabling x86 business apps for use on Continuum via cloud. This is an interesting idea, for sure. Even IBM had had to adapt and partner itself with VMware to make their products competitive. It's not the same, but the point is similar. With respect to mobile, Microsoft has it's fortunes reversed from Apples in the 90s: niche user base and struggling to grow market share beyond that base. You can't fault Microsoft for considering other options to keep the ECOSYSTEM alive at the potential expense of mobile. The problem for me is messaging. Though they have been fairly on point recently, there have a long history of messing up messaging altogether and to great detriment. They need to communicate very clearly to the most lay of people why this is useful and needed. It wouldnt hurt to implement it properly out of the gate. They do not have a track record of this, either.
  • What would you consider postivie for W10M? I mean, apart from visibility. Not being negative, just asking. I also think virtualization is the way to go.
  • All developers are targeting UWP platform.  W10M and Continuum would be the beneficiaries.
  • Just keep in mind that businesses thinks in the future while consumers thinks on the now, which means Microsoft is investing on a platform that they know it has its renews in long term!
  • Rather than virtualize legacy windows applications, I would much rather see a more intuitive version of Remote Desktop being produced for Windows 10 Continiuum.  I think it could easilly be implemented, and the technology is already there to make it happen - any software that you have installed on your Work/Home PC running W10, should be available in the cloud - ie - REMOTE APP.  I used to do it to run AutoCAD on my Surface RT, via my laptop at home - i used to make this happen, and it worked really well.  It let me pin a .exe to my start screen on my Surface RT, and I was able to run it on my Surface RT, remotely.  Without having to fully log-into my PC via remote desktop, it was a much better and more native way.   Pretty much everybody has a desktop computer, whether it be a laptop, a desktop, etc. MS needs to allow people to build there own personal Software Cloud.  A simple desktop wizard could set it up, and push pins to remote apps to your phone so that you could run anything remote via. continiuum.   The technology is already there, it just needs to be made easier for people to do - ex. no fiddling with port forwarding, and static ip address, or having to subscribe to a dynamic DNS account, etc. 
  • I must admit, I thought the same thing as I was reading the article until I saw where you mentioned this idea would be in "addition" to Microsoft continuing to have Windows 10 mobile devices. However, I will say, I hope Microsoft is spending more of their resources towards making Windows 10 OS more solid before taking on something new for other OS's. I'm not positive, but has Windows 10 evan began rolling out on carriers yet? 
  • If MS replace their existing apps on other platform like iOS and Android with virtualized UWP then that would be great. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Even for so called part time tech gurus, I think that the implications of this article are far past their knowledge set. Just sayin'.
  • -_- Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Hmm
  • *MS Can't port their apps to w10 yet because the bridges aren't ready yet. BTW, The iOS bridge doesn't work yet with apps that are using swift soooo yeaaaaaah. Any app for iOS 7+ can't be used.    
  • I thought I remembered reading a statement from MS that Swift would definitely be supported. I hope that still stands and is just turning out to be more difficult than anticipated.
  • It is widely known that Windows Store has the best exclusive apps ever, so this is a splendid idea.
  • Why would people want to run Windows apps on Android or iOS. They already have a pretty rich app ecosystem. If they try to run Win32 apps on Android or iOS, that'll be the end of Windows from even PC market.
  • The goal is when you write a code it works in all operating systems. If it can be implemented efficently, it would not only eliminate the need for writing wp exclusive apps, but also eliminates the need for writing seperate apps for android and ios as well. Can this be achieved in a next year or so? I highly doubt it.
  • Think of it this way:
    Why should I, as a developer, target either Android OR Ios OR Windows 10... When I can target Windows 10 and have an app that also runs on Android and Ios?
  • Maybe because of UI elements. Porting an app is still not that efficient, and we are talking about running an app virtually across devices? Why not just sync our account and it downloads the app for each device and sync our Settings? Native apps are the most optimized ones. Plus if one app is to be run on Windows, iOS and Android, it's better to offer porting of a Univeral windows app to iOS and Android with suitable UI elements. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • But, if it is going to run on Android, they must adhere to the guidelines of Material Design. So, the app would look and function the same on both platforms. I would love to see native apps perform this way, and still have live tiles. I think that would be pretty amazing. I would so use WP as my daily driver instead of my other OS.
  • It's just like saying that windows is one. But we know it's not 100% true. The core is one, yes, but each platform need some tweaks for a unique experience. Similarly, maybe Microsoft doesn't want to write all that iOS and Android apps code separately (eg for Office Suite), so they might be thinking of writing the core program, and then releasing them on different platforms with some changes.
    This can definitely ease the update process. But running everything virtually? That doesn't make any sense. They can offer a solution. Like a server based remote PC for every user, but it'd be usable only for cases when we can't access our primary device, while traveling etc. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • If you can write one app that hits all ecosystems thats a pretty big win for a dev.
  • They can do that right now with a packaged webpage.  The reason nobody does that is that you can only code to the lowest-common-denominator and can't take advantage of the unique features of any of the platforms.  This idea has been tried oh so many times and has never worked.
  • The goal would be that a developer could fire up Visual Studio and build a single app that would run on a PC, Windows phone, Android (virtualized), and iOS (virtualized).  This is the approach Rudy Huyn argued for last year.  Obviously, would Apple and Google allow these apps on their store?  My thoughts, why not buy Xamarin, roll it into core Visual Studio, and ta da. 
  • Ta da! This
  • I would jump all over this if I was a developer. I could code the app for the WUP and through virtualization my app would run on any device in the world. No more time spent on coding for several different platforms and needing to make tweaks for a specific devices. This would turn W10 into the one ring that Microsoft (Sauron) could use to spread to any device that has ever existed.
  • Exactly that why we have remoteapp/fx which is what largely is what HP is using
  • This is the opposite of what is needed.  
  • I disagree. This is exactly what is needed. Windows everywhere.
  • makes sense write one app that works everywhere and I mean truly everywhere But I still want a windows phone or at least a very good launcher
  • We all do. However, that is besides the point of this article.
  • Well my last comment sure Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Thank you! Finally someone else that gets it. W10 would be the one ring and Microsoft created it to rule all devices regardless of who made them.
  • Agreed.  This looks very promissing. My two concerns are performance and native API compatibility. If you are Virtualizing the app experience, is it a VPN setup where you are effectively streaming an interactive experience from a server?  There's gonna be lag, which would likely make many games borderline unplayable even with great wifi connections.  Or is it a local virtualization container effectively providing W10 emulation?  And in either case, what, if any, native API/OS hooks will work as expected?
  • I have the same concerns. With how fast mobile and broadband speeds are improving, I'm sure this will be less of an issue in the near-ish future. 5G speeds are rumored to be faster than in home broadband. Obviously that relies on the availability of those antennas and phones that can access them.
  • I doubt people read articles anymore...
  • It's called divide and conquer, and it's worked before.
  • Yeah the Windows Universal App platform is wonderful and bursting with apps everyone wants. Oh wait no there isn't even an Amazon video app available for it. Even freaking Wii U managed to get one of those.
  • How is it Daniel? Windows Store has less apps than IOS and Android, and even MS apps have less quality than IOS and Android versions... This would be a great move if MS had exclusives to its Windows Mobile platform, not like this...
  • Well that kind of just blew my mind. I didn't even think about doing it the other way around, but it would make developers just make 1 version (a windows version) and get both iOS, and Android...but also Windows 10 (all flavors). Basically a shortcut instead of usin Xamarin.
  • At least you see the light ;)
  • It's easy to see the light you can comprehend english. ;) It seems smart. lol. The play here is to get developers (so they can get apps) to use Windows. Not seeing that obvious notion is crazy in my opinion.
  • Seems cool in theory, but in order to work: A developer who normally focusses on android or iOS would write a Windows 10 universal app in order to be deployed "everywhere". This would require them to master c# as much as they did with objective c or java. Another idea which will require windows mobile to be viable.
  • I doubt the fact that Windows Mobile's relevancy in the market would count. As a developer, I can say that I would be onboard right away if I had the option - even if Windows isn't my market focus, hitting it too with little to no extra effort would be a bouns I'd really appreciate.
  • I somewhat agree with you and I think your narrative fits well with the current strategy. But, I am not sure that the desktop marketplace will drive innovation though. Certain types of applications will require a mobile first mentality before being created. I guess if apps written once can successfully be virtualized across android and ios, than that alone could bring them over. It is a big if, though and certainly not for a few years.
  • Another pie in the sky dream
  • Just like getting a man on the moon.
  • Yeah, we haven't been there since 1972. For obvious reasons; it costs a shitload of money and nothing comes out of it.
  • And without having to pay the $1,600 per OS licensing free Xamarin charges ☺ Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Hopefully it won't cost more
  • This would be a technically impressive feat but the timing is very bad. At a time when MS is struggling in mobile and dealing with a declining PC market most people will see this as a sign of MS having little faith in its own ecosystems. On its own it wouldn't be a big deal but on top of already having a, not totally unearned, reputation for not supporting their own stuff it is problematic.
  • "most people will see this as a sign of MS having little faith in its own ecosystems."
    By putting their own ecosystem everywhere even on competing platforms? That sounds odd. It sounds more like domination.
  • Well... I guess we'll see what the media has to say but I think given the way MS is usually treated in the media it will be you, not me, in for a surprise.
  • Have to agree. As much as I would love to see this happen it could be seen by the media as desperation and everyone will stick the boot in. Add to that MS will abandon anything no matter how big the promise, time and again they have fked up, ever one knows this.
    Plus, Hard to imagine google lying down and letting this happen without a major fight.
  • I think the weakness in this premise is that people would actually want Windows 10 apps (as opposed to traditional Win32 programs) on ios or android. Whats the real benefit for those users running a W10 version of the same app they already have access to? Because so far there really arent any unique W10 apps that would justify such demand.  
  • Win32 apps and virtualization. See HP Elite x3. Developers could also just write for the Windows platform and presumably hit three targets.
  • I am pretty sure ios and android have access to virtualization options like Citrix, Splashtop and even MS RDP. This idea isnt selling them anything new in that regard and UWP apps have even less appeal. And is it a viable option for a developer to target a platform with a virtualized app rather than a native one? Wont they run into the same problems Microsoft is having now with Cortana on ios for example? Why would a developer switch to writing for W10 first which has not brought them success after all these years and then porting to platforms where they already have success?
  • I will say this raises way more questions/buts/ifs than I have answers for, but think of Continuum, putting Windows 10 USB computer sticks, etc. and where all of this going with UWP and there could be some advantages of thinking of Windows as a service in its truest sense.
  • In theory, many things sound great. But just as your previous commenter stated, this approach raises more concerns than one might think. As much as I would love to support such ideas, you have to think this through and stop spreading ideas of how things could be working out for Windows 10 Mobile just for the sake of evoking connotations.
  • Exactly. My premise of development is premier multi screen continuum experiences. Until iOS and Android provide that I refuse to allow my apps run on those platforms if I can help it. And if Microsoft force me to, you can bet I'll be considering removing my apps from the store. While we aren't consigned to the same developers forever, I can bet a lot of developers, if not most, would still rather just develop native apps for iOS and Android. Maybe five hundred years in the future from now this will have a chance. Plus remember that if this does play out well and people start to show decent interest Apple and Google will probably just do it themselves and steal the limelight from Microsoft.
  • Let me guess MS will talk about all this cool stuff again at Build and then we'll be waiting another year for it to actually happen? And I don't care about running apps on the other platforms. I don't even want any of their apps. By now I just want an awesome phone with a stable fast secure OS, great battery life, and a reliable Mail app that can properly render emails and send me Calendar reminders that work!! 
  • That's fine, but companies like Microsoft and this article are thinking long-term strategy not necessarily immediate consumer desire. There is a time and a place to debate both things, but this addressing another issue.
  • That's a cop out. What he is saying is MS haven't been able to get the very basics of a mobile phone right after 10 years, what possible hope does this complex process have? 2036?
  • I would say Microsoft have been perfectly fine getting the basics right from the start; I would agree that Windows 10 is the odd one out so far, but the whole concept of WaaS needs some maturing, and there's a lot of confusion about what exactly Windows 10 (mobile) IS at the moment with the majority of people not running stable releases. This is reflected in people's reactions, I believe. As for "waiting to happen", I think we live in a changing world where carriers are being relieved of the update release process (and we should all be VERY grateful for that), vendors are reconsidering how their OS is released and updated, and perceived functionality is diluting across phones, tablets, 2-in-1s, laptops, and PCs. It's kind of like web 3.5: function has become more important than the hardware providing access, and Microsoft are doing a VERY good job providing function across just about any hardware out there (with perhaps the exception of the Wii, which seems to have an Amazon movie app that Windows 10 doesn't).
  • Agree. We should have a "Universal" language so apps run on all kind of OS. Or at least, functional bridges between languages (like this iOS to UWP bridge)
  • Was it the true finality of W10? Is that the strategy of MS to impose himself as a serious opponent is the "mobile war"...
    I hope it's not. MS will betray his users who have WP since Nokia and HTC era.
  • No they won't. If anything this would benefit everyone using W10 (mobile, desktop, tablet, etc). Microsoft would essentially create one OS that can run on any device regardless of the preinstalled OS. Developers could then code one app that they know can be used anywhere. The WUP idea would come to full fruition by being truly universal. No more coding for iOS, Android, Windows, etc. Just code for one OS and it will work on anything.
  • Look at my comments a couple weeks ago I said emulation or virtualization was the way to go not x86 chips
  • Why not. Seems like every other idea they've had to get devs has failed. 
  • Sneaky sneaky sneaky.
  • Too funny...they can't finish developement of Windows 10 Mobile much less the Android bridge and they are planning to virtualize Windows to these mobile OS (iOS and Android)... Are they out of their collective minds ???
    What they plan to gain? utter nonsense...please!!!!
  • Agree. Would luv to think this could happen but they can't keep their own backyard tidy, this is too much for them. This type of genius , sadly on history, is well beyond them.
    They've got their ambitions and capabilities totally mixed up.
  • This already exists - Xamarin.  Write once and run in Windows.. and iOS/Android. Virtualization like HP are introducting is diluting the front end OS, so arguably is removing the usefulness for Windows other than on servers.  But under that model why would people still write apps for Windows. But I do agree the reverse of current bridges needs to exist - Xamarin and tech like it is for sure Microsoft's best path forward to get apps cross platform as a user can write once run anyware.  If they gave this away and the tool ran on all platforms to promote use (e.g. an iPhone developer likely uses a Mac) then perhaps people might use it, but there would have to be some proven time savings built in to get people on board.
  • I think Microsoft already offers Visual Studio on Mac.
  • I think the UWP would be a better solution than Xamarin (IF MS succeeds)because if u want to develop in Xamarin, u have to have at least a decent understanding of the three platforms that it supports, and that's true even if you use Xamarin.Forms. In the UWP case you leave that knowledge off to the virtualization engine, and you will get 100% code reuse. These all of course are speculations, and only time will tell if MS will eventually perform this gigantic task, and be successful. If so, I think we should say goodbye to technologies like hybrid/html.
  • It is clear Microsoft is suffering from ADHD - they cannot focus on one thing for long and quickly move on to other things.
  • Really? Sounds like a plan to me. Put Windows everywhere as a service.
  • Think they just did that with Office. And it worked, too.
  • Man Microsoft vision is obscured and honestly when Apple drops their next round of devices im getting on the train and I'll wait to see what goods Microsoft has to offer five years from now
  • Five years from now? Assuming the shareholders havent hired a mercenary army to forcibly destroy MS's phone divisions, they will probably be on their 6th failed mobile platform reboot.
  • I'm surprised about what Apple did with the iPhone 6S and the iPad Pro, its really impressive in terms of performance on the ARM architecture.  I haven't seen the performance of Snapdragon 820 which will be available for HP Elite X3, but if it scores Octane v2 benchmarks as high as the Apple A9, I'm pretty sure the gap between PC's and smartphones is over. 
  • Is over? Lol. No chance. PCs on a Core i5 run circles around any arm chip still. Even AMD chips run better.
  • Yeah, it's ridiculous that people are comparing a max 5W SoCs to15-125W CPUs.
  • So this will likely bring xbox one game streaming to windows mobile, android and iOS devices too.
  • For playing Windows games running on Steam or Xbox One, you don't need to invest heavily on porting streaming to smarthones, this already works great on Windows tablets that have been customized to have an Xbox controller. (See for example Vulcan Xcelerate 8 
  • Yup, every device is your windows phone with advanced continuum, just NFC tap a small smart tag you carry around and the device is yours watchdogs style... Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • I think it seems like a plausible outcome. If you look at the big picture- Microsoft producing fewer phone models and OEMs now flooding into those vacant slots in the market, greater ingenuity in the PC/2-1 market, and new partnerships for IoT- it looks like Microsoft is setting the stage to take mobile away from the hands of Apple and Alphabet.
  • LOL
  • A year or two ago Microsoft announced the plans to "rebuild" .NET (not in the sense that it immediately replaces standard .NET) from the ground up, as an open-source, cross-platform framework. I've been thinking about .NET Core (their new framework) quite a bit, and it had me wondering, if it supports Windows, and the plan is for it to also run on OS X and Linux, would it be a huge jump to support Android & iOS, too? And, if Universal Windows Apps could eventually swap out .NET (standard) for .NET Core, would this allow Universal Windows Apps to transition to being simply Universal Apps? The implication that a developer could create one app, and have it run on all Windows, OS X, Android, iOS, and Linux devices, is *insert Trump voice* HUGE. I think this is something that would genuinely get a developers attention. It's one thing to say "hey, if you create a Universal Windows App, it runs on all Windows Devices", it's something totally different to say "hey, you can create one native-feeling app, and have it run everywhere". Yea, yea, yea, I know that HTML5 based apps basically already achieve this, and really haven't caught on. Let's face it, HTML5 apps don't look or feel native, aren't the most pleasant way to develop (in my experience), and are more focused on mobile devices (rather than running everywhere). If .NET Core could be used to create native feeling apps, which run everywhere, while still utilizing an "adaptive UI",  this could even negate the need for virtualization technologies.  But I digress, this is just the wishful thinking of a Software Engineer, whom may be reaching a little to far with these thoughts and "assumption". :) Edit: Just wanted to add that I've been reading all the other comments that have been left, and I think a lot of people are missing the point, and are just jumping to the conclusion that Microsoft is killing WP/WM10. Remember, Microsoft's goal is that their services, including Windows, be everywhere. What if you no longer had to worry about compromising by buying a Windows Phone with a smaller screen, less memory, or a poorer camera than you'd like? What if you could buy any phone you wanted, install the Windows app, and have it basically turn the phone into a Windows Phone? This is essentally how i interperet this move to be. It's as if Microsoft's "grand plan" is to have Windows Phone/Mobile trancend from being a hardware-locked OS, to being a service anyone can run from whatever they would like. In a nutshell, what if "Windows Everywhere" is more than just a Windows 10 mantra about having it installed on every PC? What if the hidden meaning is "Windows Anywhere"? Just some food for thought. :)
  • Problem is that MS really really really doesn't like to use .Net core in WP/WinRT/UAP frameworks. Xamarin already works pretty much as well as I expect things to "ever" work (it will naturally evolve/improve some), and even there you need to abstract away much of .Net Core stuff if you want to develop for W10, if you stick with Android + iOS it's much simpler.
  • as many ways as we want to put it nicely, in the end, MSFT has been killing off Windows Phone, which really sucks...
  • And yet the Elite x3 looks to be the fulfilment of a true Windows Phone? Seems to me that Microsoft is laying the ground work.
  • A true Windows phone that average consumers probably won't be able to buy. Sounds awesome.
  • Well, I hope they finally start making their own apps better on Windows than those on iOS and Android
  • I don't disagree at all, but part of the problem is they are building the OS, the tools and the apps all together at once. It's like scaffolding. You can't implement one part until the other guy gets his stuff done. iOS and Android clearly already have their base built, so it is easier to make complete apps.
  • Yeah because in the days of Android gingerbread it was rough and apps forever crashed but years later their foundation is solid
  • Gingerbread worked great, it was Donut that everything crashed on.
  • Will network connection be required to run such virtualized apps on device? I'm a bit confused about how it will work in detail. Could you Daniel be more specific technically, please?
  • And I'm here for the ride and long haul.  I switched back to Windows from using Mac OS 9 and OS X for...15 years or so just because of Windows 10.  I definitely see a bright future for the platform.  Admittedly, this concept is a little weird for me but I'm not on the other side of the fence to really benefit from the virtualization. I have to keep reminding myself that they're not trying to reclaim mobile ground but rather put their presence everywhere. I just want my cool earpiece and for Cortana to be my omnipresent and proactive little helper :)
  • If they have any competence at all, they could have implemented much of the code against their own previous frameworks, and then swapped the bits that have changed in the new one. It's not like .Net or Windows Runtime is new at this point.
  • Virtual smartphone.
  • The hospital I work at uses "virtualization" for all the computers in the hospital. We are on Windows 7. This isn't new, but before W10 it wasn't possible to do on phones.
  • It's possible, but the experience tends to suck.
  • I'm sorry but both virtualization and cloud applications almost always suck because they have ****** performance. Virtualization isn't going to win anyone over. Can't believe anyone would go this route.
  • It won't be perfect, but is the internet now fast enough in 2016 to make it plausible? HP is about to find out and we'll see how the Elite x3 works out, right?
  • Do you feel that the Elite os the surface phone Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • I actually like the broader idea. I figured they would do it eventually, but I always imagined it would be by way of compile-to-native. The easiest and quickest way to turn users off is with laggy janky unresponsive software. Those first impressions are lasting. MS and intel really need to go balls to the wall on the x86 w/ continuum idea. It is increasingly looking like the only possible route to success. And if it's not possible (with heat dissipation and all), then it's not possible.
  • great job WC, this is really interesting stuff indeed, the large US bank where I work has dozen of security apps for iOS and Android but 0 for Windows Mobile to let the bank customers and employees to login to data sensitive apps that run on the bank to perform transactions. Some of these apps don't run on the web so a Internet browser is not the choice, you need to use popular iOS and Android.  However, with virtualization, this changes everything, if this lets users login to a virtual Windows server using their phone (doesn't matter the OS on the phone) users can login to the virtual server using Continuum and get the job done.  This is really exciting times we live in. Thanks Microsoft for bringing Continuum to the mobile industry, it makes your smartphone much more productive.
  • Great article! I was thinking about that when I first heard about the Windows Bridges back in 2015. This could make developers to develop for windows. Because their UWP-App would truely be available everywhere. I guess it is not so much about porting existing windows apps over to android and iOS but instead making sure every developer wants to develop for UWP with all they have.
  • That's a very smart strategy, but it won't benefit consumer Windows users at all. Why? Because virtualization requires an Internet connection and most likely a paid subscription. Also, a feature-par native app will always be superior to any other solution.
    So while this may encounter success with businesses, consumers obviously won't pay to run remote apps.
    It might signal the death of Windows as a consumer platform. And we don't want that to happen, right? ;)
    But yeah, this could be what's best for Microsoft. Moreover, Chromebooks and things like Remix OS make me think that it's going to happen anyway.
  • The expression "cant see the wood for the trees" comes to mind after reading some of these comments Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • The article talks about Windows being used virtually on other devices running iOS and Android. Does this mean good things for the W10m hardware? Probably not, but it has huge implications for W10 (mobile, tablet, desktop, etc). If the virtualization works, then Microsoft finally has the "one ring" to rule all devices. Why wouldn't a developer make apps for Windows knowing that the app would run on any device? That is the idea behind the WUP, but expanded that to a phone, tablet, etc. that doesn't natively run Windows 10 and you really have something. I hope this is what they're doing, but time will tell. Long story short: create a WUP app and that app can be used via virtualization on any device in the world. No need to code for multiple systems or make tweaks for a specific device.
  • Bring on the HP superphone. I want to buy one now.
  • In new app development it is implemented but the old native and typical apps are still issue for Microsoft , the idea or virtualization is really a great idea , hope it will be reality some day these all efforts are just for WP to make it good
  • I'm not too positive about simulating Windows on iOS and Android mobile devices though, due to hardware restrictions. Porting Windows apps to iOS and Android makes sense to me, as if Windows is the hub for all apps and so developers would only need to write one app, but I don't think developers would really adapt to the system that quickly. A lot of app developers put iOS and Android app languages (XCode and Java) as their top priority, and learning other languages would take extra effort. I doubt that developers would want to go that extra mile just to gain a bit more users.
  • I was thinking this initally and was going to do a proof of concept for my company.  We are a very big Citrix/Virtualization house and I setup a workstation in the cloud so I don't have to carry my laptop with me.  I need to try continium with Xenapp but need to get the 950xl first!  PS 950 is for sale in forum :) 
  • It is truly positive approach, and moreover Microsoft from their own experience of the struggle in growing an ecosystem is creating a healthy atmosphere even for a new operating system to enter a market as they already have a healthy uwp apps as base....really visionary!
  • When are we going to see some apps utilising islandwood?
  • Soon... Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • The article combines three completely different things: emulation, remote access, and "Universal" apps. 1. Emulation lets you run existing software on a platform that isn't supported natively. These kinds of systems almost always fail in the marketplace because the emulation is usually dreadfully slow and buggy. 2. Remote access lets you interact with an existing program running on its native platform on a different device. As with emulation, this solution is slow, lagging, and prone to network issues. 3. Universal apps are programs whose source code can be recompiled to run on many different platforms (e.g. WinRT10, iOS, Android) by abstracting out the underlying platform. Xamarin has the best solution out there from what I've seen. Of course, platform vendors don't like this kind of approach because it removes ecosystem lock-in and reduces their control over the platform's future. MSFT's only hope is to do #3 but reversed in logic from the article: get iOS and Android devs using the cross-platform Visual Studio and hope that they also click the button to generate a WinRT10 app at the same time.  
  • Well whatever this is about. I hope it helps us supporters of Windows in the long and short run. And quick. I want the win10 mobile please, which wouldn't be buggy too (hope not too much to ask :P)
  • This is how I want to work remotely... leave my surface pro 3 / servers at home goto site and use Remote Desktop on my 950XL.  Of course that's hack of a method which works fine for me, but having a enterprise supported method would be huge for those enterprise customers since you normally can't just port forward the firewall port like I can at home :) I want a nice continuum laptop dock now :)  Nice light all screen, battery and keyboard :D  USB-C connection please.  I'd be ok going bigger than 12" screen again if the whole package is really light!  2K continuum mode please :D
  • Check this out:  
  • Thanks but I was hoping for something a bit more skookum :)  I kinda need more screen resolution.  Like the HP one seems awesome.  I didn't realize it was so cheap though, I think I'll get one just to support the motion. On that note, I almost forgot to go buy a WC T-shirt!
  • I do like the concept of getting Windows apps on other platforms via Virtualization or simply through the by product of WaaS.  I understand that as much as it is about setting the Windows Mobile OS apart from other platforms to entice folks to use something unique and fresh, there also has to be the NEED to use Windows.  Hopefully getting others to use and depend on Windows apps whether its on a Windows platform or on iOS/Android, it's key in MS's future for mobile.  The gripe I do have is, I hope MS doesn't start making iOS/Android apps and port it over to MS.  It should be the other way around.  MS should build up their apps specifically for Windows Mobile utilizing some of it's key features that make Windows Mobile great (i.e.. Live tiles, lock screen integration, etc) and then port the apps over to iOS/Android so those on that platform can have a taste of Windows.  The way it "seems" like it's going is...iOS/Android are getting the apps built up with their design ascetics and functionality in mind, and then out of not wanting to fully neglect MS' own platform, MS is then planning to port over the apps for Windows Mobile.  Again, not saying that this is exactly what is happening, but I truly hope this isn't the direction Windows Mobile is heading towards.  The four Microsoft Bridges that this article listed, I always felt, were stop gaps to help with the lack of apps on the Windows Mobile platform.  For apps we did have already built up for Windows Mobile: great!  For apps that we did not have and probably wouldn't get because the Dev(s) understandably didn't want to create: we could then use the Bridge to fill that void.  Also, it would help encourage Devs to create apps for Windows Mobile simply because the Bridge would ideally show the Devs how easy it was to do so.  Microsoft Bridges shouldn't be a solution, it should be a band aid.  I fear it's becoming the solution.     
  • I think the idea sounds great and I hope MS can pull it off. As an IT professional who has had VDI and BYOD and mobility forced upon us because it's the "buzz word" of the day I can see this being a big deal to actually making those types of technologies work in the business environment.  The problem as always is still going to be image. I can't tell you the number of people that run boot camped MacBook that boot straight in to Windows. Everything they need for work is in Windows, but as far as I can tell only for image reasons do they have an Apple device. I shake my head every time I'm in a meeting and someone complains they can't forward the meeting invite on their iPhone, yet I pull out my Windows 10 phone and forward on but they look at me with disgust because I use Windows mobile. It's not "hey cool, how'd you do that, maybe I should try Windows" it's "why do you use Windows" totally glossing over the fact I did the very thing they complain they cannot. So this has the potential be great for the Windows everywhere echo system, but I still see everyone using it on Android and iOS soley for image. I don't see this prompting developers to build more UWP and by extension decreasing the app gap. Developers will just build their apps in Android/iOS as they always have and MS will just be enabling the ability to use their stuff on that platform. The developers won't care that the user has to hold a button down and flip between apps instead of having it all in one convienient virtual platform. All the developer will care about it people using their app, and that's going to be on Android/iOS. Good for Microsoft for sure either way if they get this going, but I don't see this as a saving grace that will get Windows phones/mobile into everyone's hands. If MS really wants a MS Mobile device in everyone's hand they need to change the customer perception and find a way to make an MS Mobile device "the thing to have" from an image perspective.
  • My office is the same way. Tons of boot camped MacBook Air’s running Windows.
  • How does this differ from the Android Runtime in BlackBerry 10? Posted via my Nexus 7 2013 using the Windows Central App for Android
  • I'm starting to wonder... If MS is planning to do what you suggest, what would be the point for any windows machines available in anyone's possession if you can buy any other OS device that can emulate windows capabilities? Is that viable for windows platform? It's from the only times I'm questioning Microsoft for their end goal. Even on a rumor.
  • Well this sounds great, but I am not sure how this would work. I mean how do you get hyperV running on iOS, maybe on android but with iOS being so locked down. Also does apple or android have any legal rights to not allow such thing on their OS?
  • Does any body here know about Blu Win Hd Lte?
  • That video is very cool, the devices looks great but without a better camera it's not viable for top tier lumia users like me but I can totally see the enterprise where I work replacing all the laptops with this. Maybe most people can't immagine that but today laptops are used in the enterprises just to connect to a virtual machine so they are basically on overpowered window on a remote PC where all the work is done, this Elite phone could perfectly replace all the laptops, all the desks now have a screen per seat, just add a display dock and you are good to go.
  • It's not a consumer device, so of course it doesn't have top-tier imaging. The camera will be used to scan documents and stuff, and that's about it. You more than likely won't even be able to buy the phone unless you work in enterprise and your company is an HP customer. 
  • Wrong, you will be able to buy it. The rest of what you said confirms what I said, this is not the solution for windows phone fans since imaging is very important for us, it has always been the top selling point of all top tier windows phones.
  • This seems like the most possible way for windows phone to live on! Also the absolute only way to get people to care about making windows apps, kind of funny if you think about it.
  • This would be the best scenario possible !!! Microsoft has to package the miniVM in a way Apple cannot reject the apps developed over it, and the word will be their again :D !!!
  • Well, seeing as the virtualisation would require an open door on the OS, I think Apple will likely kill it off on that basis. Remember, they even refuse to comply with Court orders in terrorism judicial processes.
  • Court should put 1 billion / day price & Cook to jail for Apple not complying. Obama is willing to jail journalists for not disclosing their sources, will Apple get a free pass on obstructing terrorism investigation?
  • 1 terrorists iPhone, and give FBI means of abusing 300 miljon americans....
    Do you think that FBI will stop at that that single phone?
    The Same moment that software shows up, all the worlds agencies will hand
    100 Million to the one that gives it to them....
    Then all hell breaks loose.
    The Chinese will demand the same program the same day...
    After that, no one will be safe.
    Google will be forced, Samsung (or their phones will be banned from US)...
      You seriously don't know what you are asking for. 
  • I am sorry,  but I dissagree with you on this one.  The FBI has a KNOWN TERRORISTS phone.  Apple can break into that phone easy peasy.  if you think they can't  you are blind.  The FBI are not asking to crack into a phone of a person they suspect of doing something,  or just a random persons phone.  Its the phone of someone who KILLED 14 PEOPLE.  RIghts went out the window then.  I think apple are just trying to flex their "muscle" and try to buck the Government.  I think the government should just make them do it.  NO.  do not give the FBI or any other agency free reign.....thats not whats happening here....its a EFFING TERRORISTS PHONE PEOPLE.  
  • Well that's interesting but wouldn't this just kill W10M? Sad if it does because I for one prefer W10M look.
  • This looks like long term stuff, from what I'm understanding.
    Like 2-3 years in the future. If not more.
    One can even jump ship now, buy an Android/iOS device, and in 2 years, revaluate and come back to the platform.
    I think that's what I'm starting to consider.
    Microsoft is living in the future, which is fine. Good for them. But we're living in the 'now'. Is there any point in keep waiting?
  • Not really. Like you said, something like what Dan writes about here isn't coming tomorrow, or later this year. This is a multi year prospect. You're right, you can easily leave for iOS and Android devices, and check back on Windows in four or five years to see how it's getting along (if at all), in mobile.
  • Microsoft has made great plans for their Windows,server and cloud market for a very long term. With cortana analytics being not just a assistant to tell what's the weather and stuff it would be used in big data processes for which the open source R tool. And they recently also became leader in BI sector. Even with the work done native is really good so that uwp apps can be made. They are giving reason to why to build universal apps and convince devs who make legacy apps to convert into universal apps.
  • isn't Microsoft aiming for a cloud OS in maybe 6-10 years anyway? I think that's why windows 10 is the last OS. This is some in-between solution from hp and Microsoft.
  • There was a bit toward the top of the article about Xbox implemeting virtualization to run Windows 10 apps... but now I can't find it. It didn't make sense when I first read it, because while Xbox One is definitely running virtual machines, one of those virtual machines is indeed Windows 10. And Microsoft counts every Xbox One running the NXOE update as a Windows 10 device in the countdown to 1 billion Windows 10 devices. ​It almost sounded like Xbox One needed to leverage Hyper-V or App-V technology in order to run Windows 10 apps, but I believe Xbox One devices, since they run Windows 10, can run Windows 10 apps natively. Was the article changed? What was that bit about? Maybe I am just crazy!
  • It's a cool theory, one that would benefit UWP ecosystem but why would android and IOS peeps run UWP apps over their more mature ecosystem?
  • The idea is basically replace Android and iOS-designed apps with UWP apps. Basically Microsoft would try to replace C++ and Objective C with their own UWP language. Developers would code the app for the UWP and that app would run on Android and iOS devices too.   It's a good idea, actually (and it effectively kills any argument to keep WP alive). I just doubt that Google and Apple would allow Microsoft to virtualise apps on their OSs.
  • Never gonna happen. One can dream though Posted via the Windows Central Beta App for my Lumia 950 XL
  • The good thing about this if it gets real is that it won't matter witch phone you decide to buy because all will run the same applications. It will simply be down to the hardware and witch OS you prefer. And if you could do the same thing with a windows phone as with your average Android I think there's a big potential for windows phone when people want to try something new. And as we all know , windows is the better ecosystem ;)
  • Now that I let the HP x3/extender sink in for a day it is actually a pretty smart idea for them to find their way back into fight with ios/andriod,  is the day of editing 100s of RAW in the field using continuum on Adobe PS cloud finally become true?  e.g plug the dslr to the extender, batch edit on PS cloud, jump in the car, all done and ready for you back at home or office.  
  • Thank you Dan, this article answers my question over at twitter :) Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Rest in Peace Windows phone. Can't wait for Android 6 on my Galaxy Note 5.
  • Translation: "some irrelevant statement. Also, I'm just a troll."
  • RIP Windows Phone, was a regular trip
  • Who would host the app virtually?
  • As realistic as this idea is, probably Santa Claus.  
  • public cloud, private cloud or hybrid cloud, all depends on which company you work for. I'm pretty sure the initial pilots will be done on private clouds to have better security behind a corporate firewall.
  • Microsoft have a very stable and mature cloud platform that is perfectly capable of hosting apps.
  • So you're suggesting that Microsoft will host virtual apps for everyone on their own servers?
  • I'm not suggesting anything. Microsoft already host apps, it's called Azure.
  • This is presumably the 'mind-blowing' news?  The main problem I see is that Windows 10M is starting to get performance issues which will only be worse running apps on another platform.
  • Microsoft should just release a good app on all platforms so that millions can use it. An adblocker on android would be the best.
  • @Daniel, would you say that this strategy is pursued as a stopover to get the android and ios users to choose a native windows 10 device, or is it the final aim to bring windows 10 to all devices regardless the os that runs on it? I think that only the first option would justify the assumption of a positive implication for w10m. Am I wrong here? Thanks for sharing your thoughts! Best regards
  • This would be an interesting development. And it would finally put an end to Jason Ward's deluded articles on "Windows Phone not being dead". If Microsoft can put their Windows apps running through virtualisation on Android and iOS, they get the perfect excuse to shut down Windows Phone for good. Being able to virtualise Windows apps on Android and iOS means that Microsoft can still get Windows apps on Android and iOS without the burden of wasting money developing a mobile version of Windows that no one is interested in. Microsoft knows that no one wants a Windows Phone (apart from some people here on WCentral that is). Developers don't care about Windows Phone. And even IF they were on board the UWP, they'd likely block the apps from running on WP. By achieving virtualization, Microsoft can not only ensure developers that their apps will be on Android and iOS as well as on the Windows machines that matter, but also spare the millions they're currently wasting on developing a DOA mobile OS.   I for once am very curious to see if they pull this off. AND if Google and Apple will allow them to pull this off.
  • Soo.... Basically a remote desktop farm. Your phone is the terminal, azure is the remote PC. Everything is cross emulated in the cloud and beamed back to the terminal like playing Xbox on your laptop via W10. I also smell subscription service fees somewhere in the grand plan. I dunno, this seems like an uphill battle. MS needs only to subsidize the cost of app conversion from Android and focus on that only. If the app is good and free on Android I don't care to pay 2.99 for the same quality app on Windows.
  • One of the (sadly, few) reasons I refrain from leaving WP/WM is because I have dedicated so much time to learning XAML/C# and the UWP. If I can still use UWP but make it work on Android, then maybe that's what I'll do. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Maybe that is so called "explosive news" from evleaks?
  • A much more feasible solution, and more appealing to both Microsoft and developers, would be to port the .Net Framework and UWP APIs to both IOS and Android, and literally run native UWP apps on those platforms. Unfortunately, neither Apple or Google will ever allow that to happen.
  • Microsoft and co. really need to leverage Azure. It's already incredible, but could be used for SO much more.
  • Cloud first, mobile first. Nothing got to do with device first, or what device. I like the approach, as long they or OEMs continue to make windows phone, or the rumored surface phone/phablet. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • Innovation is important, but so is marketing. Even with 200+ million devices running on W10, the app flow is still very weak than it should for that number imo. Sometimes it seems like MS is going in too many directions. They should perfect W10m first. It's even way overdue for public release. After the last insider release, I actually had to go back to 8.1. Because it was the worst performing build on my Icon so far.
  • What MS apps would ios and android want to run beside the one they already have? Office and cortana
  • Office and Cortana? Are you kidding me? They are already available for both of them.
  • Ok... what is left then? Instagram v0.91 Beta? There is not a single App on Windows that works better than any of the 30 Apps that does the same thing six times better running native. No matter how many developers write code for Windows, Nobody will want it.
    If the programmers are serious, they learn how to write for Android os iOS.  
  • Yes better than we have :3
  • My thoughts on this, big picture are virtually identical to my thoughts on having Android and iOS versions of MS apps that we are all abuzz about last year: Whether both plans are actual MS strategy, or one is just consequence, either way, the design is ultimately twofold - plan A: to intice non-Windows users to use Windows and grow the platform or plan B: to provide Microsoft a refuge should their dedicated efforts fail. Because of B, I think Microsoft will ultimately be okay regardless of what happens to their dedicated platform. But as to the success of A: on paper, it should work swimmingly (and yes, I'm STILL optimistic - TRULY) however, I just can't get out of my head the HUGE risk of backfire by way of creating a "why buy the cow when you can get the milk free" sentiment to actually disincentivize migration. The outcome of last year's gambit still has yet to be determined, but it is an inherently "high risk for high reward" move. Now, this move is just like it only even more extreme, and ergo, even higher risk for even higher potential reward. I'm not so naïve that I fail to recognize the chance of this whole thing going all kinds of wrong. However, I am adopting a position of basic trust in the MS leadership as if little old me is aware of this, they most certainly are as well, and they will have been able to study it, and weigh it much better than I could ----------- or any of you could, for that matter (just want the "doom pontification squad" here to keep that point in mind. Seems like this tends to slip theirs all too readily!) So I'm keeping myself guardedly optimistic, and withholding judgment until time has rendered its own judgment......AND SO SHOULD ---ALL--- OF YOU!!!!!! I mean it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Here's to hoping for the best! Now, here's looking at the small-picture: Maybe this is stupid of me, but my instantaneous, knee-jerk response was to get really excited over the prospect of being able to use the UWP Windows 10 app (and eventual Android Central and iMore parallel apps) in all their glory right here on my iPhone, and no longer having to slog through Safari to get all my Mobile Nations goodness!!! :-) Cheers!
  • Christ. The endgame has nothing to do with virtualization, or "running Windows on x." It is - as always - about the one group of people that Microsoft always treats the best... DEVELOPERS
    DEVELOPERS Dan doesn't *quite* say it in the article, but it's so stinking obvious that the goal is to get devs on board with a strong write-once-run-everywhere promise. Islandwood lets you port from iOS? Sure... But at that point it's trivial to go back the other way. Write a UWP app and it can compile for iOS, as native code. It would even have native controls. Hell, it wouldn't be hard to figure out how to target OS X as well. Astoria - assuming it gets going again - would be the same. Write a UWP app and it can compile for Android.
  • What if they could? no one would buy a windows phone
  • Nobody is buying them already.
  • What about the idea that mobile apps could be replaced by Web apps? I remember reading this a while back and it sounded really interesting:
  • Could also be a neat way to avoid the 30% apple tax. Have a free virtualized W10 app, and the windows 10 app store as an optional download within it. Then let ppl use the app store within the VM to make purchases of Office etc
  • The iOS developer TOS explicitly forbids it. All purchases in an app must go through Apple App Store or it'll not be allowed to be published on the App Store.
  • Focus on w10m... That is beta...beta...beta...beta for another year
  • And that will die in beta Only
  •  My head hurts I am just going to have to wait till the next Windows weekly and see what Paul and Mary jo say.
  • Hey Daniel! U stole my mind!!! It's a very good way to close the so called App-Gap, cuz app developers would love to make people use their apps on Windows 10 PC using Android or iPhones (if not using Windows 10 mobile)... And they end up creating an app for W10M, and people will end up buying W10M!!
  • Write once run anywhere.  It's the Java hype all over again.
  • If MS pulls this off the biggest loser will be apple. Why would any one pay apple prices when you get the same app experience on any platform. It will come down to the best hardware to price ratio on what phone you buy.  
  • Of course it will be Android which will be the first choice. Not that unfinished and completely unpolished Crapdows Phone.
  • MMMMM HMMMMMM.  To bad you cannot even make a dig at windows sound intellegent.  everyone knows lagdroid and crapple sound awesome...and CRAPDOWS sound like a 2 year old made it up....
  • MS has shown to have the software engineering chops to make seemingly impossible "dreams" come true. I am just hoping that key pieces start coming to market soon and that adoption is essentially "universal".
  • Nice article Daniel,Ms can port Windows apps to ios or android only in two cases.
    1) if windows has more apps than ios or android.
    2) if ios or android need windows apps...
    Both the cases doesn't exists, so I doubt this BRIDGE project will be successful....
  • Both of them do not exist, Android and iOS don't give a **** about Crapdows Phone Apps, infact I don't think there any serious App in Crapdows Phone which can be ported.
  • You do realize that every time you use the word "Crapdows" you're basically shouting "don't take anything I say seriously because I'm just a troll", don't you?
  • Here is the resident 2 year old who is butthurt because his friend who has a windows phone does many things his lagdroid or crapple phone can't.  Like take a sensible picture, last a full day on charge,  or use proper apps for work instead of taking naked selfies and fart sounds.
  • So does virtualization mean you would have on your e.g. Android device have an icon "launch W10 virtualization"?. Click. Wait 15 seconds for the virtual W10 to launch and connect to cloud. Click in on a program icon in the virtual environment. Wait another 5 seconds. Yey. ;) Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • And what if ios/Android start doing the same? Wouldn't devs prefer writing ios/Android apps that can be virtualized to other OS's? What would be MS own advantage with this stategy? Another thought: Why ios/android users would prefer to use a virtualized app (that relies on good LTE/wifi) and spend data (provided they don't have unlimited data plans) instead of using the real app for their OS? ​ ​
  • Hahahahaha.. The first line I read was hilarious.. Crapdows Apps in iOS and Android LOL.. Another big joke by Microsoft.
  • All I can say is this is really ambitious from Microsoft. As is their wont, they'd need lot of time to pull this off, and it might be too late when they're done. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • The horror
  • Ms really care of them.. Oh meen
  • Continuum and universal apps are needed.
  • The biggest problem with this plan is 'the cloud'.  In order to run this virtual environment you need to be connected all the time.  I can do this today using RDP through continuum on my 950.  How is this revolutionary idea any better?
  • I think we'll hear BIG news regarding Islandwood at BUILD in 5 weeks. It would be nice if the naysayers could just STFU until then.
  • I'm stoked if this is true. ​Run a virtualized desktop > Install Bluestacks > Run the Android apps I want on W10M  
  • App streaming is nothing new or revolutionary. Current fixed line networks offer the performance of future 5G mobile networks. Surely there may be a few use cases for streaming apps on future mobile phones as there are now on wired networks, but most likely for years to come people will prefer 0-latency local apps that work also offline if needed.
  • Daniel has immense belief in MS, even satya doesn't have this much of faith in MS. According to him, in a future date suddenly windows will turn around everything. Whatever MS does, Daniel has a strong and positive reason for it. Reality is MS is in big mess even bigger than wp8/wp8.1. We have seen 2 different version of android being released after the announcement of windows 10. Windows 10 is still work-in-mess and google is going to release another version of android.
  • In another 'news'. No Xiaomi windows phone. What a surprise.
  • [Kanye voice] Nutella doesn't care about Windows Phone people....
  • Think I'll just take the short route then and switch to iOS. I've been using a Lumia 925 for 3 years now and have been stuck without an option for a proper upgrade. MWC was such a disappointment too.
  • @Daniel, would you say that this strategy is pursued as a stopover to get the android and ios users to choose a native windows 10 device, or is it the final aim to bring windows 10 to all devices regardless the os that runs on it? THIS> MS are aiming for WaaS so the device does not matter, and they do not care. If it sells more W10 devices (regardless of PC/mobile) great. But it doesn't matter as its all users on their apps/cloud/whatever no matter the OS. And maybe, just maybe, there are new W10M devices as a result for those who love them  
  • Yeah, lets look at this in reverse. If Android allowed me to run their OS on my WP and try their apps, its a way of letting me try before I buy an android device. I think if WP apps and or W10 was available to try on IOS or Android it has to have a positive effect on bringing people over. My office must have 50 people using Windows 8 and 10 and there's only a couple of WPhones. I think with an integrated dual usage it allows people to move over and into an OS that they are using every day. People must remember the general populist thinks leaving an OS is like leaving your life behind. I know people who will never leave IOS because they fear loosing their music library. We have 12 people on the road full time who have apple phones with Windows 10 laptops (2 x devices). What Business would not want to reduce the amount of tech each person carries around and better still amalgamate the user experience so there is quicker start-up time for a new employee and reduce I.T issues because there is only one main device and OS to look after... I think this is good for business...
  • Are the mobile chipsets powerful enough to handle virtualization?
  • Lame idea. Windows Phone's features are unique on Windows 10 Mobile and the strenght of Windows is showing in those features and not applications already seen better on iOS or Android. I've just switched to iPhone and beside completly NOT missing Microsoft apps (it's better than on WP!) I'm very upset about minimalistic iOS itfself (as I thought I would be). Bring iOS apps TO Windows Platform and implement EVERYTHING very carefully watching every small detail. For example if I'm using Blutetooth on iOS it gives me every feature there is, like showing battery status of my connected devices - I've never seen this on WP. Another is bluetooth GATT service, non existent on WP. And wherever you look on Windows 10 Mobile there is something missing or done just not wright :(
  • The death null of Windows Phone starts it's ring
  • AFAIK Google is working on a new Chrome OS (maybe will have a different name)  that will be released somewhere by the end of this year. That OS is meant to completely get rid of Windows in the marketplace. Windows is dominant on the desktop right now. So was Nokia on the phone market.  If Google manages to pull the same stunt on the desktop that they pulled on phones with devs adding apps to their market like crazy then well... MS will have to pack.. There is a concept that is called The Black Swan. A black swan is something that has never been seen before, nobody knows how it works, how it will affect the market. iPhone was a black swan. It came out of nowhere and chnaged the rules of the market forever. The same might be coming from google, or maybe even someone else. In three years from now you will look at this article and will realize that no matter what MS would have done or planned to do it would not have mattered anyway...
  • Those who questioned Microsoft's commitment to Windows 10 mobile should read this article twice.
  • Well look at Microsoft Mobile now, still ****, as in the OS is great albeit buggy, but the APPS are CRAP!
    ​It has been 9 months since this article and there are no ported apps from Android or IOS?! I am sick of the promises of Microsoft to create a good mobile operating system, I've been with them since Windows phone 7, I am tired of waiting and I am moving to Android, coz Apple sucks! It would be really nice if we had the apps, but the lack of apps and the shoddy apps MS have made comparatively for IOS and Android, I mean they own Facebook, LinkedIn, WhatsApp and yet those apps are crap, and they have managed to ****** up Skype!!!! I give up with them! Rant over :)    
  •   There are no apps, but we are going to let all other operating systems run our apps... Good luck with that, why should I want a clumsier program than the other 19 programs available on iOS/Android?
  • Now if only they can figure out how to get all the other apps on WINDOWS OS'es,  that would be news.  The future of win10 is def. NOT apps running on andorid and IOS.  thats for sure.
  • I have Most of those applications mentioned above except few chat messengers like fring, ebuddy etc as having any 1 of those will solve our requirements visit my website
  • Who cares,, if you are using Windows 10 apps your probably on Windows. Android bites a big knob, and Apple execs are knobs. I think MS should stop screwing around changing direction ever week and Stick to a plan of making Windows great again. Sure sell your apps on the other platforms, but for Christ sake make WIndows devices the place to go for the best features. Make programing simple and secure and low maintanence, and stop changing the crap out of everything with out telling people about it, I for one am sick of haivng to work 80 hour weeks to deal with the bloody nuclear fallout. I tell you what my if the client PCs at my Office get lock out of the server shares again im going to migrate the entire ******* office to unbuntu.