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Catherine Russell Architect, President of "Women In Information Technology" Group

Microsoft: Our strategy with Silverlight has shifted

At Microsoft’s Professional Developers Conference (PDC) this week, the future of Silverlight is one topic that has gotten short shrift. There have been no sessions about Silverlight 5 and only one mention of Silverlight in the kick-off keynote.

But there were plenty of mentions of HTML 5 and Microsoft’s commitment to that technology, not only in the next version of its Internet Explorer browser, but also as the glue “facilitating a level of independence and innovation between the back end and the front end” (as CEO Steve Ballmer said during an October 28 keynote address at the PDC).

So what’s a developer to make of Microsoft’s messaging (or lack thereof) about Silverlight at its premiere developer conference?

I asked Bob Muglia, the Microsoft President in charge of the company’s server and tools business, that very question and got what I consider to be the clearest answer yet about how Microsoft is evolving its Silverlight strategy.

“Silverlight is our development platform for Windows Phone,” he said. Silverlight also has some “sweet spots” in media and line-of-business applications, he said.

But when it comes to touting Silverlight as Microsoft’s vehicle for delivering a cross-platform runtime, “our strategy has shifted,” Muglia told me.

Silverlight will continue to be a cross-platform solution, working on a variety of operating system/browser platforms, going forward, he said. “But HTML is the only true cross platform solution for everything, including (Apple’s) iOS platform,” Muglia said.


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Posted on Tuesday, November 2, 2010 10:19 AM ASP.NET | Back to top

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