1. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Hey Dan & Ask Dan community,

    I'd like to start a brainstorm session... since many dev companies ignore the MS App Store, what could MS do themselves to improve the App Store?

    In the spirit of true brainstorming, any and all ideas welcome. I'll start of with one or two below...
    08-17-2018 04:19 PM
  2. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Run a yearly contest for best new UWP or PWA apps of the year for dev teams 3 people or smaller:

    All prizes are per person on the team...

    1st Prize: $1,000,000
    2nd Prize: $500,000
    3rd Prize: $250,000

    4th Prize: A Tesla Model 3 + $50,000

    5th - 10th: $50,000
    11th - 25th: 3 year membership to Office 365 for everyone on the dev team

    All winners announced at Build.
    08-17-2018 04:33 PM
  3. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Since banks and credit card companies refuse to support the store, and Intuit refuses to bring Mint and QuickBooks to the store, Microsoft should resurrect MS Money, its once extremely popular personal finance app.

    The new and improved version should have an Win 32 version bundled with Office 365, a UWP or PWA version for Win 10 devices, and a web version for old school access.
    08-17-2018 04:41 PM
  4. Rohn59's Avatar
    Does anyone still use Windows?
    08-17-2018 06:26 PM
  5. HeyCori's Avatar
    Hey Dan & Ask Dan community,

    I'd like to start a brainstorm session... since many dev companies ignore the MS App Store, what could MS do themselves to improve the App Store?

    In the spirit of true brainstorming, any and all ideas welcome. I'll start of with one or two below...
    They should implement the strategy that they're slowly starting to learn on the Xbox One. If they want consumers to start using their platform, they need to produce some amazing, exclusive software. And yeah, it probably needs to be a video game of some sort because those are usually the attention grabbers that draw in more consumers.
    08-17-2018 07:49 PM
  6. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    How about a discount for any Azure customers with an app store presence? The UWP or PWA app should have at least 25,000 downloads first. Afterwards the company would get a 1% discount per monthly Azure billing for each star rating they maintained.

    Certainly a 5% potential monthly discount on azure cloud could benefit companies in banking, credit cards, newspapers, airlines, and other industries to have and maintain a quality app presence on the MS Store.
    Ramin Rezai Rad likes this.
    08-18-2018 09:00 PM
  7. Ryujingt3's Avatar
    How about creating a platform that developers actually want to develop for? That would mean making the development fees on par with iOS/Android for a start, with the same regulations too. They also need to convince developers that the users are there too. Too many high profile developers left the platform or don't develop for it because they don't feel that's where the users are. They need to, more than anything, convince consumers that they care about their own platform. Once MS cares, customers care and developers (may) follow.
    TgeekB likes this.
    08-19-2018 07:52 AM
  8. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    How about creating a platform that developers actually want to develop for?
    Great point. For starters they should have a free tier for Azure. They kind of have a "free" account right now, but it's more of a trial offer that expires out from under you, and it's totally confusing. Believe me I've tried it and it's insanely complex.

    The Free Azure tier should include:
    * monthly # of Microsoft Map hits
    * monthly # of Translation services hits
    * monthly number of free throughput for any database: MongoDB, SQL Server
    * monthly throughput for mobile SQL Lite synchronization
    * monthly throughput cap for website hosting

    After an app becomes large enough to start hitting the caps on the free tier, no doubt the developer has by that time figured out a way to monetize their app and can afford to jump to the next pricing tier.

    Microsoft could take a lesson from GearHost. https://www.gearhost.com/pricing

    GearHost is completely transparent about their pricing. It's super easy to understand (Free,Hobby, Small, Medium, Large). And it gives small shops a way to scale their apps from infancy to maturity.

    Such a simplified pricing tier would be good not only for the MS Store but or Azure itself.
    08-19-2018 11:48 AM
  9. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    If they want consumers to start using their platform, they need to produce some amazing, exclusive software. And yeah, it probably needs to be a video game of some sort because those are usually the attention grabbers that draw in more consumers.
    I like the 1st party exclusives idea. One idea I think they should consider is resurrecting Encarta... for HoloLens. If they released a $1000 RETAIL HoloLens, and then sold Encarta for HoloLens for $99-$150 a pop I think they could clean up.

    Imagine a augmented reality dinosaur in your living room. Or a wooly mammoth? Or a giant sized killer bee! A 3D augmented encyclopedia built or HoloLens would be crazy popular with parents and schools!

    And yes, make it a software 1st party exclusive like you mention, only available on the MS Store.
    HeyCori and Laura Knotek like this.
    08-20-2018 10:09 PM
  10. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Another idea...

    Implementing the popular MS Rewards program for each MS Store app you use. 10 points per app usage, a total of 150 points daily.

    The MS Rewards program has done wonders for Bing and Edge. Why not apps?
    Ramin Rezai Rad likes this.
    08-21-2018 10:10 PM
  11. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    And yet another idea... A niche phone. A Surface branded phone!

    I know Nadella is loathe to have a phone but having one, even only targeting a niche market, has many advantages. As they say, it ain't over until the fat lady sings. Well, mobile ain't over until a Surface phone sings.

    Such a phone should basically be a mini HP Envy x2. Surface phone should be a slate shaped 6 inch pocketable device with eSim that combes bundled with a leather folio typecover case with a kickstand built in. It should also bundle with a Surface Pen, all for a lower price than an Envy x2, no more than $799.

    Why does even a "niche" phone matter?

    1) Because to developers it shows that MS is not just some *****-cat afraid of its own shadow/ecosystem. But that it is fully committed to its own ecosystem come h-e-doubletoothpicks or high water. That its committed to UWP on ALL platforms "universally". Even if that means that it knows it's phone will never be an iPhone or a Galaxy Note.

    2) Because to fans it shows the same backbone.

    And Microsoft desperately needs to show some backbone if they hope to win developers back to its platform.
    08-22-2018 09:02 PM
  12. PerfectReign's Avatar
    Does anyone still use Windows?
    My staff support close to 2,000 Windows desktops. We do also have a few hundred Windows and Linux servers along with one HP3000.

    Sent from mTalk on my HP Elite X3
    08-22-2018 10:32 PM
  13. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Making sure eSim models are available for all Surface devices, and selling short-term on-demand cell service through the store. There should be daily, weekly, and monthly rates.

    On-demand LTE would greatly enhance the mobility of Windows devices, and garner renewed interest in UWP by the development community.
    08-23-2018 08:43 PM
  14. Adventurer64's Avatar
    And yet another idea... A niche phone. A Surface branded phone!
    I agree. It's so obvious, keep producing Windows 10 mobile devices! No brainstorming required. Surface brand is strong, leverage it in mobile. Who cares if it's a money losing, niche product. Commit and customers will eventually come back including carriers.
    08-23-2018 10:07 PM
  15. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Move Cortana Skills to the Store right next to the Apps tab.

    Basically the Store needs to be one-stop shopping for ALL Microsoft products and services. So why is Cortana missing from the Store?

    It's ridiculously complex to discover new Cortana Skills. Try explaining it to someone... first you click on Cortana... not the start button... but Cortana... then you click on the little Notebook icon... yes the one under the Home icon... then you click on Manage Skills... then you click on Discover More Skills. That's way too many clicks!

    It should be as simple as... Open the store app... click on Cortana Skills...
    08-24-2018 09:34 AM
  16. Ryujingt3's Avatar
    Another idea, make all their software and services in the store available globally. Not to just the same five or so regions. Hololens and Encarta would be good but parents and teachers won't shell out so much money for a Hololens because a) MS will price it way too high and B) the small apple on the back that consumers expect to see isn't there.
    08-24-2018 09:52 AM
  17. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Agree that Microsoft needs to price HoloLens or the common man. Needs to be a retail version, not more than $999. Schools and parents would pay that if there was something really cool and educational on it, like Encarta.

    To add to it, or perhaps as an alternative to the professional quality Encarta, Microsoft should come out with some sort of compiler that allows kids to turn their own 3D images into HoloLens renderings that could be added to a "wiki" version of Encarta for HoloLens.
    08-24-2018 10:02 AM
  18. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Free Azure for non-profits with a UWP or PWA app with at least a 3.5 star average user rating during a given billing month.

    What apps would this bring? Humane Society, Khan Academy, Metropolitan Museum of Art, NPR, Museum of Modern Art, San Diego Zoo Global, National Audubon Society, etc.
    08-25-2018 09:28 AM
  19. anon(10505149)'s Avatar
    Recap so far...


    * A yearly contest for best UWP & PWA apps from teams 3 devs and smaller. Top prize $1M per dev. Winners announced at Build.

    * Resurrect the once wildly popular personal finance app MS Money. Win32 bundle with Office 365. UWP or PWA for the Store. Web site for browser access.

    * More 1st party exclusive apps from Microsoft

    * Discount for current large Azure customers who have a PWA or UWP app presence on the store. 1% for every average star rating an app has for its new reviews during a given monthly billing cycle, up to 5% per billing cycle. App must have at least 25K downloads. Mainly targeted to Banks, Credit Card companies, Airlines, Newspapers, etc.

    * A truly free Azure pricing tier for small startup developers. And a simplified, transparent, growth based pricing structure like www.gearhost.com... Free, Hobby, Small, Medium, Large. This would give startup devs access to Azure services like SQLite DB synchronization, Mongo DB/SQL Server, Mapping, and Translation services, greatly improving the quality of their offerings.

    * $999 retail version of HoloLens. And 1st party exclusive... Encarta for HoloLens!

    * MS Rewards program for UWP/PWA app usage. 10 points per app. 150 total points daily.

    * Surface branded "niche" phone. No expectations that it will ban iPhone or Galaxy Note killer. Just a 6" mini HP Envy x2 like device with included leather typecover case and pen for $799 to assure devs and fans that MS has a backbone and that it committed to UWP/PWA on pocketable, mobile, devices.

    * eSim versions of all mobile Surface devices, and on demand LTE (daily, weekly, monthly) for sale through the Store.

    * Move Cortana Skills to the App Store with a tab right next to Apps or Edge Extensions

    * MS paying more attention to their global customers.

    * Create a compiler so that people can turn their 3D images into HoloLens objects. Create a "wiki" Augmented Reality Encarta site where contributors can upload their HoloLens renderings.

    * Free unlimited Azure for nonprofits who have an UWP/PWA app on the store that has at least a 3.5 star rating during a monthly billing cycle. Who would benefit? Humane Society, Khan Academy, Metropolitan Museum of Art, NPR, Museum of Modern Art, San Diego Zoo, National Audubon Society... all off which could have some pretty cool apps to share!
    08-25-2018 10:24 AM

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