How many Windows 8/8.1 apps have you already written? A bunch, a couple, one? Great! Now comes the hard question. How many have you migrated to Windows 10 Universal Windows Platform (UWP)? You should know that these are all really great questions, especially the last one. Why? Yet another great question. Right now, the heaviest user of Apps (YOUR Apps) are Windows 10 users. Don’t believe me. Read my blog on Application Insights, add metrics to your app and see what devices and Windows versions are using your app. In just the few short months since Windows 10 was released it has the highest new downloads and it’s quickly shifting to the highest use. It’s doing that for several reasons for this, along with some warnings about doing nothing about this mass migration.
More New CustomersFirst is the awesome adoption of Windows 10 and it’s not just Windows 8.x users upgrading, so are lots of Windows 7 users that previously had no access to your apps. That means lots of new customers that had not (and could not have), previously discovered your great apps. Those new users are looking for apps. You have an opportunity you should not miss.
Windows 10 Screams App!Windows 10 more than any other Windows really makes Apps rock! Apps can do so much more and behave in such a wonderful way it just screams to use Apps. My opinion is that Apps are just easier to get, easier to use, run faster and are more useful in Windows 10 for lots of reasons. The store is more easily accessible, the apps work more like you expect them to and apps play nice with other apps and Windows. Windows 10 encourages users to download Apps. I don’t know what the actual stats are but I would not be surprised if Windows 10 users download and, just as importantly, use more apps than other Windows versions.
Get Thee There NowThere are some steps you can take to move to Windows 10. I learned this from personal experience. The first thing you need to do is try ALL your apps in Windows 10 as they currently are. Microsoft has done a remarkable job of providing backward compatibility so your apps written for Windows 8 or 8.1 just work. However, there some exceptions. For example, I found that the TimePicker control in an App I wrote for Windows 8.1 had problems with a binding in the ClockIdentifier property and would crash with a XAML exception in Windows 10. It was a minor thing that took only a minute to fix but it prevented users from getting a properly good experience in Windows 10. Second, convert your app to a UWP app for Windows 10. There are sooo many cool things you can do in Windows 10 that porting your apps just gets you lots of big wins. First, your Windows 8.1 App will be easy to port, using all the great Adaptive UI features, to Windows 10 Mobile users. That adds millions more potential customers for very little work.
You Need To:
- Check that your existing apps work in Windows 10
- Create Windows 10 versions of your App (real easy)
- Add Cool Windows 10 features to your app like Cortana, Ink, Adaptive UI, etc…
- Get your UWP app onto Windows 10 Mobile