Microsoft just pulled out a surprise for developers at the Windows 11 announcement event. On the stage, Microsoft’s Panos Panay has confirmed that app developers using the Microsoft Store can bring in their own commerce engine and continue to keep 100 percent of all their revenue. Yes, Microsoft just made an announcement that’s completely opposite to what Apple and Google have been doing with their native app stores. Also Read - Productivity paranoia making hybrid work unsustainable, says Microsoft
Microsoft Store on Windows 11 will let developers host their apps in the same way as they do on other app stores. However, developers can now choose to opt for Microsoft’s commerce engine or carry on with their own commerce engines. This kind of arrangement will bypass the issues that Epic Games has had with Apple and Google off late. Also Read - How to enable Dynamic Lock on Windows PC: A step-by-step guide
Microsoft Store to allow for native commerce engines
This move from Microsoft is in a complete opposite direction to the one that Apple and Google have taken. The Microsoft Store hasn’t been as rich with its app diversity as the Google Play Store and Apple App Store in Windows 10. Hence, it seems like a clever attempt to woo developers to deliver their apps via the Microsoft portal. Also Read - Microsoft Excel: How to import data from websites, images, or printouts into the Excel sheet
This new arrangement for carrying e-commerce on Windows 11 should give rise to more developers hosting their apps and games on the store, and keep all the profits to themselves. Panay made it clear that developers can also choose to opt for Microsoft’s commerce engine, in which case the latter will keep some share of the income.
Is this a good thing or a poor decision? Only time can tell. Developers on Android and iOS have long complained of Google and Apple keeping a substantial chunk of the profits for all in-app purchases. This led to Epic Games take Apple to the courts after the latter removed its Fortnite game from the App Store. Epic was found to violate the App Store policies by implementing its own payment solution.
Another big announcement regarding app distribution on Windows 11 is the support for Android apps. Windows 11 will allow for Android apps to be integrated right into the taskbar and Start menu. As the preview showed, Android apps will run in the original layout that they were designed for. That means apps like TikTok and Instagram will appear in narrow windows instead of fullscreen apps. Microsoft is using the Intel Bridge technology to port these apps from the Amazon App Store.