Posted in: Desktop software, Mobile software, Windows, Windows Phone

Microsoft confirms legacy apps and full desktop experience will only work on 8-inch and larger Windows 10 tablets

Last week all eyes were on Microsoft and the announcement-rich event, held on January 21. A lot of groundbreaking and game-changing plans were unveiled to make the next installment of the OS a truly revolutionary experience. But perhaps the thing that excites us the most is the future of Windows on mobile devices.

Microsoft has made it clear that it will spare no resource in following its One Windows strategy and unifying the user experience across all devices. This, of course includes the unification of the app ecosystem, allowing developers to write code that works seamlessly across PCs, smartphones, tables and even Xbox consoles.

Today Joe Belfiore, Corporate Vice President, Operating Systems Group at Microsoft mentioned on Twitter that the company has rethought its mobile strategy and will now include a full desktop experience and Win32 apps only on devices with screes of 8 inches and more. This is not the case with Windows 8.1 which allows for a full desktop version to run on 7-inch devices. The US tech giant apparently found that to be rather inconvenient from a user standpoint and is slashing the support in the name of a better overall user experience.

But with all this talk of apps and different apps on different devices and a unified platform things often get a little confusing so what does this announcement really mean? Well to try and put it simply Windows 8.1 currently has two main set of apps. One the one hand we have traditional win32 applications, that have been the norm on PCs and then we have Microsoft’s new RT shell, or the touch optimized, tiled, Metro UI interface, which offers its own set applications.

Some software packages, like Skype and most browsers for example, are available in both variations, but they are still different apps. This was primarily done to target early generation Windows tablets and to some extent Windows-powered smartphones with a new set of apps, tailored specifically to them.

Windows 10 want to bridge this gap even better by making sure that any app written to comply with the new app ecosystem will run across PC’s, tablets, smartphones and even Xbox, but this still only concerns the aforementioned new kind of applications. The traditional PC style win32 apps are a totally different breed and will not be affected by this new change.

What Joe Belfiore is essentially saying is that manufacturers will be allowed to put full versions of Windows 10 which include a desktop and consequently win32 application on devices with 8-inch screens and above. Anything below that, be it a small tablet or smartphone will essentially be limited to using only the new unified application platform and the apps it provides.

If you want to review all of the awesome things that Microsoft announced on January 21 or think you might have missed something important head on over to our recap article for the complete scoop.

Source | Via


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