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March 10, 2016

UWP porting guidance for Android and iOS developers

Today, we are pleased to introduce a new app development concept map for app developers that aligns software development concepts across the iOS, Android, and Windows platforms. App developers new to Windows 10, who are already familiar with Android or iOS, will be able to use this reference to quickly orient themselves on building for the UWP.

Like the 2nd century B.C. Rosetta Stone tablet, which enabled translation between three different ancient languages, this Windows app concept map can be used to translate ideas between Android, iOS, and Windows, making porting much easier between platforms. You can use the concept map side-by-side with other useful resources found in our porting apps to Windows 10 section on MSDN. Reviewing this guide will help you port your apps to Windows and expose them to a larger user base.

Excerpt from the guidance document: a side-by-side map of data concepts in Android, iOS, and Windows.
Excerpt from the guidance document: a side-by-side map of data concepts in Android, iOS, and Windows.

The concept mapping guidance (you can download the whitepaper here) is broken out into 15 sections to make navigation between concepts and platforms simple:

  1. User-interface – overview of controls and styling
  2. Navigation and app structure – toolbars, layouts and back buttons
  3. Custom inputs – speech recognition and beyond
  4. Data – databases, REST calls and web sockets
  5. Tooling – comparing IDEs
  6. App lifecycle – suspend and resume events as well as background tasks
  7. Performance – threading, async calls and performance best practices
  8. Monetization – in-app purchases and trials
  9. Adapting to multiple platforms – responsive layout and device capability testing
  10. Notifications – push and scheduled notifications as well as display widgets
  11. Media capture and rendering – video and audio
  12. Sensors – accessing raw and processed sensor data
  13. Location and mapping – maps, geofencing and geocoding
  14. App-to-app communication – talking between different apps
  15. Software design – overview of preferred design patterns by platform

At a glance, you’ll be able to see the difference between platforms and identify which features and functionality are available to each. The guidance is laid out in a convenient table that let you easily locate and learn more about the platform details you are most interested in. Android supports app widgets, for example, but iOS does not. iOS supports badges, on the other hand, while Android does not. Windows supports badges and also has a tile system.

Beyond development concept mapping, it’s worth noting that the Dev Center provides a large array of additional resources to help app developers bring their existing code to Windows 10. Here are just a few links to help get you started:

Bringing your mobile apps to the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) provides new reach for your existing code beyond mobile. For iOS developers, it’s also worth looking at the Windows Bridge for iOS, which makes it easier to use your existing Objective-C codebase on Windows.