Microsoft announces that their mobile version of Windows will be available for free

In San Francisco’s Moscone West convention center, Microsoft began their annual Build developer conference announcing that they are making available Windows licences for free for smartphones and small tablets. This will allow mobile phone and devices manufacturers to offer Windows for their phone and mini tablets without being required to pay a licensing fee per device to Microsoft.

The Build conference is one of the most popular events in technology and the ticket for the 2014 version, which is taking place in the first week of April, sold out since January 15th 2014.   Microsoft’s executive vice president Terry Myerson marked the beginning of the conference declaring that the idea of giving away Windows licences for free is aimed to enable developers to promote their applications to more customers and to reach more phone and small tablet users.

While the announcement means that Microsoft is willing to offer their Windows mobile version for free, they will continue charging for their Windows desktop software which is the core of their billionaire earnings. The decision not to charge for Windows Phone, can be explained by the fact that this software has not been as successful as the leaders of this market: iOS and Android.

Even though Windows for mobile has experienced an acceptable performance in sales, they are still way behind the numbers reached by iOS and Android. While many developers and phone makers may prefer to continue working with the main players in the market, instead of giving Windows Phone a chance, the fact that the license is now available without any cost, may drive them to consider it as an option.   Microsoft’s give Windows Phone licenses give away is an strategy to prompt phone manufacturers to consider the option of producing phones and tablets that operate with Windows Phone and to motivate developers to create apps and services specifically designed for the platform.
During the first day of the Build conference, Microsoft also discussed their plans to work in a Microsoft version for devices or everyday objects that are normally not associated to internet connectivity, this is known as  the “Internet of Things” and as an example, they showed a piano that operates with Windows 8.1. While this software is still in development, Myerson announced that if and when the Internet of Things becomes a reality, it will also be available for free.

In the meantime, the company also introduced universal Windows apps, which is set to help developers to avoid having to create many versions of their apps. With universal Windows apps, developers can use the same method to build apps for phones, tablets and PC, making things simple for every aspect of the creation. Further updates from Microsoft are expected as  Build continues until the end of the week in San Francisco.
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