Microsoft rolled out Windows 10 as a universal OS with an aim of eliminating the need to have different versions of the OS for different devices.
Prior to Windows 10, Microsoft has to develop a mobile version of the OS that was used on phones and tablets, among other mobile devices. Well, with the universal OS, this is no more. One reason for doing this was to allow users to use the same software applications across a variety of devices. Microsoft was aware that its mobile users have a very limited access to apps when compared to those available for Windows PC users. The case gets even worse when compared to Android users.
Speaking of Android, Microsoft launched Project Astoria – a program designed to help Android developers easily bring their apps to the Windows mobile platform. The number of apps available in the Windows Phone Store is nothing compared to what the Google Play Store has. With this Project Astoria, Microsoft wanted to make it easy for Android developers to re-use their Android codes when developing for Windows.
But as it turns out, this is program is no more. According to reports, Project Astoria’s closure is because the company wants to avoid confusion with another of the same kind – Islandwood for iOS.
However, the obvious reason here is because of the recent acquisition of Xamarin. With Xamarin, it is possible to reuse the same code (with minor tweaks) when building native apps for multiple mobile environments.
With Xamarin, it is possible to “share common app code bases across Windows, Android, and iOS environments while at the same time delivering full native experiences on each platform,” Kevin Gallo, who is the VP of Microsoft Windows Developer Platform, said.
This has been coming as rumors about Project Astoria’s closure begun showing up somewhere in November last year. At the same time, there are other market analysts that think Xamarin is not the major reason behind the closure of Project Astoria. However, as Microsoft pointed out, the company doesn’t want to see its “developers confused.”
Project Astoria seems to have had already taken some liking among many Microsoft and Android fans. Following its closure and Microsoft’s reasons behind the closure, some users have reacted to the case, some welcoming the Windows OS maker’s move while others condemning it.
One commenter who grabbed out interest in particular pointed out that the main reason Microsoft ditched the Windows-Android program and stuck with the Windows-iOS program is because of the better developer income associated with iOS.
“Android users should know that developers prefer iOS to Android, even if the latter has more users. iOS makes 75% of all mobile developer income,” the commenter noted. In short, the main reason behind this move is money.
What do you think?