Windows team formed to ship secret, risky, and showcasable apps – for Windows vNext.

With special programs like paying $100 incentives for the development of apps, Microsoft has made it crystal clear that the future of Windows is all about having apps that meet the needs of all its users. That said, many of the apps could be seen as nothing more than minor indie-apps that don’t truly take advantage of the power of the Modern UI.

When Microsoft felt that Windows 8 wouldn’t be truly represented by any of its hardware partner’s tablets, it decided it was time to take matters into their own hands and they created the Surface. It looks like Microsoft could be planning a similar move in the app world.

Back in January of this year a new team was created called “Inbox Experience/Platform Showcase apps” and was even somewhat detailed by a Microsoft employee on an online resume:

After a re-organisation, some people of my team and I moved in a brand new team inside Windows vNext. The team is called Inbox Experience/Platform Showcase Apps. The goal of my team is toship the most fun/secret/risky/showcasable apps inside Windows and its ecosystem. My job is to be a C++ developer (WinRT, XAML, DirectX, Drivers, COM, WRL, Win32 and co). I work at a feature level/scope (features owner).

As you might have caught, the job summary clearly mentioned Windows vNext, but what is that exactly? Good question. In the past, that meant the next major version of Windows, but that definition has been changing quite a bit in recent times.

In the Freshpaint demo for Windows Blue, Windows Blue was referred to in the video by some as ‘Blue’ and others as ‘vNext’ – so that means these fun, secret, risky and showcasable apps could be aimed directly at Windows Blue when it launches (hopefully) later this year.

Now that Windows Blue has leaked, we’ve already seen some new apps like a Modern UI sound recorder and calculator. These could be early efforts of that project, though I probably wouldn’t call these risky or fun, but showcasable? Possibly.

If Microsoft wants to create a series of apps that are so powerful, useful and ‘showcasable’ that they attract bigger name app developers to the platform, they probably need to do better than Calculator, but heck, you have to start somewhere.

What do you think that this relatively new team could be working on, and is it directly aimed at Blue or is it perhaps for some undefined future version of Window, like Windows 9? Share your thoughts below.

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  • Michael Elfial

    I think MS are on a completely wrong track with all the Metro/Store apps approach. The kind of productivity they offered before is almost the exact opposite of what they offer now. I do not say it is not productive at all, I say that they are abandoning the exiting base they have. Actually Android makes much more windows-like impression than the new Windows interface. I am afraid that somebody in MS must close the entire chapter and return back as quickly as possible or Windows will start to die out in 2-3 years both on desktop and mobile.