A set of Microsoft tools which enable Android apps to work on Windows Mobile has leaked on internet, along with full documentation on how Microsoft intends to monetize these apps.
Project Astoria, is a Microsoft’s solution to run Android apps on the Windows platform which acted as a bridge originally planned to release this autumn. The upside of this technology was an advantage for an Android app developer to target Windows mobile without having to leave the android development environment.
Microsoft has designed plug-in replacements for Google Play and Google Maps. For the application to run on Windows mobile, Android apps need modifications and for instance the Google ads must be swapped with Microsoft advertising service and if the app is using Google cloud based messaging service, it must be configured to use Windows notification services to make the app work.
As posted by, Alcarez Research on the Seeking Alpha,
“This is a very important tailwind for Microsoft’s big shift toward a freemium strategy,”
Referring to the Windows Bridge for Android apps, which very much does the job of ‘porting’ the apps to Windows in automated environment. This essentially works by running the Linux based android software to run on a virtual machine within the Windows mobile operating system, enabling the modified android apps to run on a ‘side-load’ basis. This is pretty much how, Blackberry 10.3 devices run the Android apps.
The research also states,
“The mobile apps industry is a $30bn-a-year business. Unfortunately, due to the low global market share of Windows mobile devices, Microsoft’s app store business is way behind Google, Apple and Amazon.”
According to the market share data from IDC’s Q1 2015, Microsoft has failed to grab the share presently held strong by Android and Apple.
If executed properly Microsoft will be seen, selling a Lumia mid-range phone for above $100 with latest 4G connectivity, and a big decent screen which can run android apps. A glittering hope for windows mobile success.
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