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    It is no secret that Microsoft's mobile ambitions have one persistent and seemingly inescapable ***** in its ever-morphing armor: the app gap.
    It seems that virtually every review of a great Microsoft product or even glowing blog posts about the benefits and progress of Windows 10, ends with an obligatory reminder that in comparison to iOS and Android, there is a substantial app deficit in the Windows ecosystem. The issue is so profound that not only are critics of the platform trumpeting this message, but Windows enthusiasts have also begun to bend under the weight of the truth of the matter.
    For context Google's and Apple's platforms boast at least a reported 1.5 million apps. In comparison, Microsoft's growing platform has just one-third the apps Google Play and the App Store boast. At nearly half a million apps Microsoft is desperately working, particularly during their period of retrenchment from the general smartphone market, to close this gap. This task is not a simple endeavor. As it requires not only the technical and strategic efforts Microsoft puts forth, but also the voluntary commitment of developers and consumers who can perceive Microsoft's vision, it is a profound challenge.

    As this series has highlighted, Microsoft is currently in a state of retrenchment from the general smartphone space as the company nurtures various aspects of its ecosystem to ensure a successful rebirth into that consumer space. Refining the OS, building OEM partnerships and developing the tools, infrastructure and relationships for a rich app ecosystem are all part of this "gestation" stage of Microsoft's mobile strategy.
    In this final installment of the "Windows Phone isn't dead series" we will stare the "elephant in the room" or ecosystem, the app gap, square in the eyes. With an unwavering and candid approach, we will tackle this massive problem with an equally massive piece to culminate this series. I will share with you answers Microsoft provided to some of my inquiries. We will also delve into Microsoft's app Bridge strategy and provide further analysis as to the possible direction the company's purchase of Xamarin may take them in their quest to close the app gap.

    That said, if the app Bridges and the Xamarin purchase ultimately yield what I believe Microsoft is aiming for, Redmond may actually change the game in the process.

    Full story from the WindowsCentral blog...
    03-27-2016 11:42 AM

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