Microsoft’s plan was to make the new version of its Windows a hit on mobile by letting it accept tweaked apps of Android and Apple, but it has encountered an obstacle. The software developers that the company wants to woo simply aren’t interested. Last year, sales of Windows Phone were 3% of total global smartphone sales. In comparison, the share held by Apple and its iOS system was about 15% while the sales of Google’s Android operating system were about 81%. One primary reason for this difference is that there aren’t as many attractive apps in Windows Phone as opposed to rivals.
In order to boost sales for its operating systems and phones, last month, Microsoft said that it would provide software developers with tools for making it easier for them to design apps for Windows Phone, similar to those that are made for Android and Apple phones. However, most developers choose to be focused on popular systems because not many people use Windows phone so they prefer not to develop apps for it. Moreover, they also aren’t sure how easy it would be to use the tools that Microsoft intends to offer. According to app developers, Windows Phone needs to gain substantial market share for it to be worthwhile.
There is a lot at stake for the world’s biggest software company this summer as it will be rolling out Windows 10. This is the first operating system that will run on tablets, PCs and phones. If the new platform isn’t embraced by developers, its future prospects will be seriously damaged. Microsoft is hoping that this new platform can be used for powering one billion devices in the next two or three years. A dozen developers were interviewed in this matter and only one of them, King.com, said that they would port their Candy Crush Saga game to Windows 10.
Eight of these developers said that they weren’t going to make apps for Windows 10 at all while those that already have existing apps for Windows Phone said that they will continue to do so. Nonetheless, any moves haven’t been rolled out by developers as yet because the new set of tools promised by Microsoft hasn’t been unveiled. A spokesman of the software company said that it is still early and a lot of software developers wish to explore the tools in the upcoming months.
Microsoft has reasoned that better and more apps may attract more people to a Windows tablet or phone. In the top 10 free apps that are available for Apple, only six of them are offered on Microsoft and two of them are made by the company itself. Previously, Microsoft paid developers to create apps for Windows Phone. Failure to convince developers wouldn’t be fatal for the firm, as its growing dependent on its Office, cloud computing and server software services. However, it would indicate that Microsoft is losing its share in personal computing in a world where phones are expected to outsell computers by 2017.