Today, at our annual Build conference, Satya Nadella and Scott Guthrie talked about the vision and strategy of rationalizing Microsoft’s platform into an intelligent cloud and intelligent edge, enlightened by AI and mixed reality and architected for the modern computing landscape. Tomorrow, we will share with you, our developer community, the unique opportunities with Microsoft 365 in today’s multi-sense, multi-device world.
For years, we have been at Build talking about the huge opportunity with Windows and Office as developer platforms. In fact, today we have 135 million commercial monthly active users of Office 365 and nearly 700 million Windows 10–connected devices.
But Microsoft’s mission is fundamentally dependent on how well we TOGETHER can harness the power of both Windows and Office in the Microsoft 365 platform.
Microsoft 365 brings together Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS) as a complete, intelligent, and secure solution to empower employees.
In case you’re not already familiar, Microsoft 365 brings together Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS) as a complete, intelligent, and secure solution to empower employees. As the largest productivity platform in the world, it’s a vital part of the intelligent edge—and it enables developers to create beneficial experiences that work elegantly across many different device types and many different computing “senses”—including vision and voice.
Today, many of you would consider yourselves Windows or Office developers. Or web developers who target Windows and Office users. Or even mobile developers asking how you might align a mobile experience with other devices. When you leave Build 2018 this week, we hope you consider yourselves Microsoft 365 developers.
New Microsoft 365 experiences empower customers to achieve more
This week, we’re introducing a set of features and updates across a variety of devices and platforms and a better blending between web and application environments for users and developers. Last year at Build, you heard us talk about our commitment to meeting our customers where they are—across platforms. We’re expanding this work to not only bring more Microsoft 365 services across platforms and into applications, but to better connect customers’ existing PC experiences with their phones, helping to increase engagement for developers. These announcements include:
- A new way to connect your phone to your PC with Windows 10 that enables instant access to text messages, photos, and notifications. Imagine being able to quickly drag and drop your phone’s photos into a document on your PC in one swift movement—without having to take your phone out of your pocket. This new experience will begin to roll out in the Windows Insider Program soon.
A new way to connect your phone to your PC with Windows 10 that enables instant access to text messages, photos, and notifications.
- The updated Microsoft Launcher application on Android that will support Enterprise customers with easy access to line of business applications via Microsoft Intune. Microsoft Launcher on Android will also support Timeline for cross-device application launching. Today, your Microsoft Edge browsing sessions on your iPhone or iPad are included in the Timeline experience on your Windows 10 PC. Tomorrow, we’ll show how later this year you’ll be able to access that same timeline on your iPhone with Microsoft Edge.
The updated Microsoft Launcher application on Android will support Enterprise customers with easy access to line of business applications via Microsoft Intune.
Timeline is coming to Microsoft Launcher on Android and to Microsoft Edge on iPhone and iPad.
- Updates to Sets, an easier way to organize your stuff and get back to what you were doing. With Sets, what belongs together stays together, making it easier and faster to create and be productive. As developers, your Universal Windows Platform (UWP) application will work with Sets from the start, helping to keep your customers engaged. And with a few simple changes, your Win32 or web applications are supported within Sets as well.
Updates to Sets, an easier way to organize your stuff and get back to what you were doing.
- Microsoft 365 support of Adaptive Cards, helping developers create rich interactive content within conversations. As a result, end users can approve expense reports or comment on an issue in GitHub directly within an Outlook email or Teams chat. Building on Adaptive Cards, we’re also bringing payments to Outlook. With Microsoft Pay, you’ll be able to quickly and securely pay bills and invoices right from your inbox. Several Microsoft partners will announce support for Microsoft Pay at Build.
Microsoft 365 support of Adaptive Cards helps developers create rich interactive content within conversations.
New opportunities for developers with Microsoft 365
Core to the Microsoft 365 platform is the Microsoft Graph. It helps developers connect the dots between people, conversations, schedules, and content within the Microsoft Cloud. We encourage you to tap into the power of the Microsoft Graph to gain unprecedented context and insights to build smarter apps. Tomorrow, we will talk about new opportunities with the Microsoft Graph and new tools with Microsoft 365 that give you the flexibility to design and create in the languages and frameworks of your choice, empowering you to create smarter ways for people to work. These announcements include:
- New and updated Microsoft Teams APIs in the Microsoft Graph and support for organization-specific applications in Teams, allowing developers to create tailored, intelligent experiences based on the unique needs of a business or industry. Companies can also publish custom apps to the Teams app store.
- Deeper SharePoint integration into Microsoft Teams, enabling people to pin a SharePoint page directly into a Teams channel to enable deeper collaboration. Developers can use modern script-based frameworks like React within your projects to add more pieces that can be added and organized within SharePoint pages.
- Updates helping you support the Fluent Design System, so you can create immersive, deeply engaging experiences with Microsoft’s updated design language. Now every organization can make beautiful solutions that empower your customers to do more. With UWP XAML Islands, you can access the more capable, flexible, powerful XAML controls regardless which UI stack you use—whether it’s Windows Forms, WPF, or native Win32.
- .NET Core 3.0, which allows developers to use the latest version of .NET and have your application run in a standalone .NET environment, so you can build amazing app experiences that don’t impact your broader organizational infrastructure. This allows desktop developers to take advantage of side-by-side install of their applications. That means that system-wide updates of .NET will not impact running applications.
- MSIX, a complete containerization solution providing a simple way to convert large catalogs of applications. It inherits all the great features from UWP, including reliable, robust installation and updating, as well as a managed security model and support for both enterprise management and the Microsoft Store.
- Windows Machine Learning, a new platform, which enables developers to easily develop Machine Learning models in the intelligent cloud—and then deploy them offline and in high-performance to the PC platform.
If you are a developer maintaining Windows desktop applications, you can now use all of these modern tools with your existing investment across Win32, WPF, and Windows Forms applications. I’ll also share tomorrow our commitment to maximize your opportunity with Microsoft Store by providing up to 95 percent share of the revenue for your consumer apps, excluding games. For more details on the updates to Microsoft Store, check out this blog post. For more detail on the developer opportunities I’ve mentioned here, check out Kevin Gallo’s blog post.
Some of the things we’re talking about at Build this week are available for developers to use and try out now, while other experiences will come during the next year.
All of the things we’re talking about give you the power to build applications the way you want, with the most flexibility to make the right choices for your end users. This is an exciting time: Microsoft 365 enables you to achieve more with your current skillset and your current tools. And that in turn empowers you to help your users achieve more.
Thank you for building with us. I can’t wait to see what you’ll build in 2019!