One of the big bets we're taking inside Genisoft is the one on Line of Business apps developed on the new Windows platform (aka Windows modern apps).
We're more than two years into this journey and I can confidently label it as a successful one. Probably the best example of this success is our Sales Force Automation solution that we are developing together with our partner, High-Tech Systems and Software. As a measure of its success, the solution has been awarded this month with the "FY14 Best Windows 8 App Developer" award. More than that, the solution has been very well received in the market with a significant number of customers being highly interested in it.
Of course, as it is the case with any new platform, it hasn't been a smooth journey. We've overcome quite a number of technical difficulties, out of which probably the most difficult one was the side-loading story. Fortunately, Microsoft has announced some significant improvements in this area coming in the timeframe of Windows 10 (first half of 2015). But overall, the big advantages provided by the new modern Windows apps are by far overcoming any intermediate bumps we're encountering. We're working hard to help our customers discover these advantages and, in most cases, once they are revealed to them, they realize the opportunity and come on board.
As always, not all apps are candidates for the touch-centric, tablet-style approach. But many of them are, especially the ones that are dedicated to employees working in the field. The advantages of Windows 8/8.1 LOB apps that we value the most are:
- The exceptional user experience, truly fast and fluid
- The overal performance
- The development paradigm that forces most of the calls to be asynchronous (which is the base for both performance and fluidity)
- The rich ecosystem of providers for UI controls (ranging from the simplest ones to the very complex ones like data grids)
- Excellent support in Visual Studio
Finally, one important addition: the new Universal Application paradigm supported by Visual Studio 2013 makes it much easier to port our apps from tablets to Windows smartphones (especially ones with larger screens).
I'm looking forward to the cool things we're going to release in the coming months. So far, the bet on Windows modern apps proves to be an excellent one.