October 30, 2012
While Windows hasn't quite struck a chord in the mobile market with past efforts, Microsoft believes that Windows 8 will be a bigger success than its predecessors in this field and will present a major opportunity for mobile development.
According to Tech2, it is apps, coupled with application design, that will play a major role in the success of Windows 8 as a mobile OS. If apps aren't able to demonstrate the power of the platform and provide a high-quality user experience, then Windows 8 phones and tablets are likely to fail. In order to succeed, Microsoft has to enable a streamlined, intuitive development process for the OS. Pratima Amonkar, director of audience marketing for Microsoft, believes the company has done just this.
"Microsoft has a multi-prong approach; we are committed to provide developers with world-class software," Amonkar told the news source. "Secondly, we are focusing on training the app developers to help prepare them for the explosion that is happening."
According to Amonkar, Microsoft has really focused on supporting the app development process and ecosystem. However, this support will have to be to the point where developers feel more comfortable, or at least equally so, with Windows 8 than they do iOS today. Without this focus, the platform isn't likely to be any stronger than the previous Windows Phone 7. Microsoft has released several tools to help ensure developer comfort though.
With Visual Studio 2012 now supporting mobile application design, improved training opportunities and other initiatives to bring in developers, Microsoft is offering a number of new tools and services to entice the application development community. But will they be enough? Tech2 noted that one major area of concern with the OS is a general lack of design sensibilities. However, Amonkar said that Microsoft has renewed its focus in this area.
"People lack the understanding of how UI/UX works and that's I think is one of the biggest challenges in front of the app developers in the country," Amonkar said. "App developers need a lot of hand holding and mentoring especially when it comes to UI/UX and we provide the same through our workshops as well as app fest. We have several UX experts who provide mentorship onsite and continue to do so offline as well."
With a renewed focus on design, usability and improving the tools needed to develop high-quality apps, Microsoft may be able to take on the mobile scene. Whether or not it is successful is still unknowable though.