The past five years has seen the emergence of an App economy. As touch-based smart devices have become cheaper, faster, more powerful and increasingly popular, the rise of Apps as a new model for the production, distribution, purchase and consumption of software for consumers has become the norm.
What’s in it for the consumer? Well, the ability to acquire and use software has never been easier or quicker. The age of installation disks somehow feels distant. Apps’ ability to take advantage of the high-powered computing devices that nestle in so many people’s pockets and bags these days to entertain and inform is unprecedented.
From a technical perspective, Apps give the developer access to control and exploit that powerful hardware in ways that a browser-based application just couldn’t: whether the graphics and motion sensing hardware to provide compelling games experiences, or location and positioning components that allow where someone is to become a core part of the functionality of the App. These mobile devices, however, confront a reality in today’s world that network connectivity isn’t yet ubiquitous: Apps help to provide a seamless user experience whether connected or not.
For developers, the world of Apps at gives route to distribute software with an ease that has never seen before. App marketplaces give a platform to distribute software, manage sales, manage updates and upgrades with an ease and efficiency never seen before – and, crucially, available to anyone from the biggest software houses to an individual developer.
The App economy is still forming and evolving. Microsoft Windows 8 is opening up a new world of opportunities for developers, with new exciting new device types, the critically acclaimed Windows user interface, and a wealth of choices for developers in how to develop. We’re kicking off a series of articles on creating beautiful apps, whatever platform you’re using, but they’ll also help you to understand how to get up and running with Windows 8…
- Download the Windows 8 Consumer Preview
- Get the free Windows 8 developer tools
- Download the Windows 8 Design Assets
- Got an idea for an app? Join the Windows 8 Developer Linked in Group to get your app in store before everyone else
Matt Ballantine is an experienced business technology leader with extensive media and creative industry knowledge. Since April this year he’s been applying that market experience to help Microsoft engage with developers and IT professionals across the UK. Matt feigns an interest in sport by being a Watford fan, and in the arts through tinkering with music (mostly using the Reason software these days).