Microsoft hopes to court iOS apps to Windows 10 with Objective-C support

Posted:
in iPhone edited May 2015
Microsoft on Wednesday announced plans to add Objective-C support to its forthcoming Windows 10 platform, a move that will make it easier than ever for iOS developers to port their applications over to the Windows platform.




Dubbed "Project Islandwood," Microsoft's new tools feature middleware that correlates to equivalent APIs for iOS and Windows 10. The software was demonstrated at Microsoft's Build conference keynote presentation.

Developers who have worked with Project Islandwood say they had to make a few minimal changes to get their applications up and running on Windows. One of the apps demonstrated at Wednesday's event was the popular "Candy Crush Saga" freemium game from developer King.

In addition to Project Islandwood, Microsoft also announced "Project Astoria," which will also allow Android applications to run on Windows devices. Microsoft revealed that the Windows Mobile platform, for screen sizes smaller than 8 inches, will include an Android runtime layer capable of running software for Google's platform in both Java and C++.

Unlike Project Islandwood, which will convert iOS applications for Windows, Project Astoria will allow Android apps to run unmodified on Microsoft's forthcoming operating system.

Also on Wednesday, Microsoft announced Edge, a new browser that will replace the longstanding Internet Explorer branding. Microsoft Edge allows users to write directly on webpages, share markups, read articles without ads, and access materials offline.

The company also announced its first version of Visual Studio compatible with Mac and Linux. Visual Studio Code is now available to download for OS X, allowing code to be written in .NET, JavaScript, and a number of other frameworks and languages.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,449member

    Not very Swift.

  • Reply 2 of 48
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,976member

    LOL...the move of desperation.

  • Reply 3 of 48
    bheitbheit Posts: 15member

    ..and who doesn't want Windows malware?

  • Reply 4 of 48
    anderkhanderkh Posts: 23member

    Apple deprecates Objective-C.  In other news, Microsoft adopts Objective-C.

  • Reply 5 of 48
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    And let me guess....the tech press is having a collective orgasm over this and Apple is DOOMED. :D
  • Reply 6 of 48
    Well, Objective-C and NeXTSTEP used to run on Windows NT. Also, Microsoft had previously sold Visual Studio for Mac OS, before OS X. This was all a long time ago, however. Just a footnote in history. Most people didn't know Microsoft had sold a version of Unix, before OS/2 was a thing.
  • Reply 7 of 48
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

     

    Not very Swift.


    Yeah, kinda late.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post



    Well, Objective-C and NeXTSTEP used to run on Windows NT. Also, Microsoft had previously sold Visual Studio for Mac OS, before OS X. This was all a long time ago, however. Just a footnote in history. Most people didn't know Microsoft had sold a version of Unix, before OS/2 was a thing.

    There's also NT for PowerPC.

  • Reply 8 of 48
    chadbagchadbag Posts: 1,076member
    Apple has not deprecated Objective-C.


    All I think of when reading this is

    "... One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them."
  • Reply 9 of 48
    bigpicsbigpics Posts: 1,360member

    The code names make demographic sense at least.  Astoria (in Queens, NY) - the Android piece - is (or long was) a synonym for a lunch pail, blue collar, largely LMC crowd - the type of neighborhoods where Android rules now.  And they'll just be run in emulation looking nothing like Windows apps. So a UI hodge-podge.



    Islandwood is more suggestive of Long Island proper to the east of Queens - tony, aspirational - with the apps at least slightly adapted to have a more native experience on the platform.... ...and running at a lower level.

     

    Also, one has to say that "Edge" - the (mostly) new "Project Spartan" browser is uncharacteristically at least half-decent for a Microsoft product name.  Until some company sues them for TM infringement at least (see: "Metro Interface," etc., e.g).



     

  • Reply 10 of 48
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anderkh View Post

     

    Apple deprecates Objective-C.  In other news, Microsoft adopts Objective-C.




    MS has probably been working on Obj-C compatibility for a couple years now, even before Swift was announced. They are likely in the process of adding Swift as we speak. That said, the Swift GM runtime libs are currently embedded into the app not the host OS like Obj-C is, so theoretically the Swift apps might run in the MS Obj-C environment anyway. Right now, Swift is still calling the same Obj-C libraries but that might change soon with upcoming iOS updates.

  • Reply 11 of 48
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member

    Well, hell has frozen over. But more than a few years late.

     

    Thanks, Cpsro, for raising the bar on clever first posts! :-)

  • Reply 12 of 48
    mubailimubaili Posts: 387member
    "Visual Studio for Mac is like giving ice water to people in hell" :-). Now we must wait for Apple to show something wow in WWDC 2015.
  • Reply 13 of 48
    mystigomystigo Posts: 110member

    This is actually pretty amazing. If it's a high quality implementation, they will pick up a raft load of apps very quickly. There are some very nice Mac-only apps written in Objective-C which could be ported quickly.

     

    But something that is more interesting by far, is the possibility that a new app developer for Windows might think, why not Objective-C? Two birds with one stone as it were.

     

    There has been a universal disconnect between the two platforms for decades due to language barriers. This could be an exciting thing.

  • Reply 14 of 48
    d4njvrzfd4njvrzf Posts: 797member

    Sounds kind of like the equivalent of Wine, except MS has a hell of a lot more development resources than the Wine project.

  • Reply 15 of 48
    mystigomystigo Posts: 110member

    Hmm. One thing to consider though: Objective-C is the language, but Cocoa frameworks are the lifeblood of the app. If it's just Objective-C without Cocoa, it's DOA.

  • Reply 16 of 48
    Good move by MS. Allow the worlds top developers the ability to bring their class leading Apps to Windows mobile devices. Maybe we'll see Apps hit iOS first and Windows second (instead of Android).
  • Reply 17 of 48
    "Embrace, Extend, and Exterminate" anyone?
  • Reply 18 of 48
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,840member

    How in the world else are they going to get developers interested in selling apps outside of the Apple ecosystem? They're toast at this point.

  • Reply 19 of 48
    rcfarcfa Posts: 756member
    mstone wrote: »
    That said, the Swift GM runtime libs are currently embedded into the app not the host OS like Obj-C is, so theoretically the Swift apps might run in the MS Obj-C environment anyway. Right now, Swift is still calling the same Obj-C libraries but that might change soon with upcoming iOS updates.

    First, ObjC isn't deprecated at all, Swift is an addition for projects that do not need C compatibility.

    Second, the Swift runtime is currently embedded, because in the near term many changes are expected which could break apps using a shared runtime; once swift has settled, the runtime won't be bundled into apps.

    Third the libraries will continue to be the same, it's the whole point of Swift that it's interoperable with ObjC and that they share the same object models and API. Apple isn't going down the road of two similar yet distinct APIs with subtly different bugs and semantics; if they start doing that it's time to sell Apple stock...
  • Reply 20 of 48
    rcfarcfa Posts: 756member
    Generally this is great news, likely an outgrowth of renewed interest in Office for the
    Mac and iOS.

    That the tools become available: what a difference a new CEO can make, under Ballmer that would never have happened...
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