Chris Houdeshell, a project manager for an energy company who also codes for the Windows platforms in his spare time, said it is "vital that Microsoft merges certain aspects of Windows Phone and Windows." Noting that although the platforms share a kernel, networking stack and other features, he said, there is "more that can be combined and shared," such as a common Bluetooth stack and much of the user interface and user experience. He urged Microsoft to share complete integration of Windows RT API's with the other two platforms.
Microsoft officials haven't been explicit in describing their plans for integrating their operating systems or development platforms. However, they pointed to several examples of how developers can share code among the different OSs.
In February, Greg Sullivan, senior product manager for Windows Phone, noted the common kernel in Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8, and said it was possible that Microsoft will eventually have a single app store for buying applications that work on different devices.
A Microsoft spokeswoman this week told Computerworld that code can already be shared by developers across Windows 8, RT and Windows Phone 8, but added, "it will always be necessary for developers to tailor experiences appropriately for different device types."
The spokeswoman offered a link to a Microsoft Web page dated May 31 on how to maximize code reuse between Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8.
Asked whether it would make sense to merge Windows and Windows Phone, if only to give developers a quick way to write once, run anywhere, Microsoft responded: "While developers cannot currently develop a single app for use across Windows 8, Windows RT and Windows Phone 8, substantial code can be shared across all. It will always be necessary for developers to tailor experiences appropriately for different device types. Microsoft is committed to making app builders' lives easier, and driving alignment wherever it makes sense in as timely a manner as possible."
This article, Developers clamor for unified dev tools for Microsoft's 3 operating systems, was originally published at Computerworld.com.
Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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