Tim Murphy's .NET Software Architecture Blog

December 2015 Entries

No Excuse For Not Developing For Windows Phone

Ok, I’m biased.  Let’s get that out of the way up front.  I am a fan of the Windows Phone and it’s user interface.  I think the live tiles, informative lock screen and application contracts offer a far superior experience to Android and iOS.  Regardless of my preference I believe that at this point it is inexcusable for all but the smallest companies to ignore Windows Phone.

There has been one big reason for the lack of adoption Windows Phone: Apps!  About 75% (not a scientific number) of the people that I have talked to would prefer a Windows Phone over Apple or Android if the apps were there.  Microsoft has a chicken and egg problem though.  They can’t get better market share without more key apps, but no one wants to put there apps on a platform that doesn’t have market share.

I know the stats: Windows Phone has 2% market share.  I don’t think that is the real story.  That ignores that fact that this still equates to over 50 million active users.  That is a significant number of your customers that you are choosing to neglect.  The good will of your customers is worth more than the cost of development and maintenance.

Universal apps mean that you can reach more users than any other platform with a single code base.  With over 110 million installations of Windows 10 and a much larger pool of potential Windows users your app can reach a wide and profitable margin.  Add to that tools like Xamarin which allow you to write once and deploy to iOS, Android and Windows along with reusing your back end architecture and any arguments against writing for Windows Phone get really thin.

Lastly, the business adoption of the Microsoft Surface and the rumored Surface Phone give another potential market for Windows Phone.  This opens line of business application development.  While not a large user base for each individual app, it gives an infinite number of opportunities.

In the end, the variety of value opportunities make a strong case for investing in Windows Phone development.  Spend some time with the tools and ecosystem.  You will find the experience rewarding.

Open Live Writer Released


Windows Live Writer has been my blog writing tool of choice since it first came out.  When Microsoft announced that it would no longer support and upgrade the product I was understandably disappointed.

Some time ago we heard (I believe from Scott Hansleman) that they were looking at open sourcing the tool.  While anyone who reads my blog knows OS is not my first choice I anticipated the change because I don’t want to lose this productive and flexible tool.

Now it is here. No more worrying about an end of life situation for WLW now that OLW has been release.  The interface is the same and it even seems to use the same directory structure so you won’t lose work in progress.

I just wanted to say thank you to the team that made this happen.