Paul is going to hate this line of logic


So it is no secret that Progressive Web Apps are the future for the majority of development. Most major popular applications are looking for how they can implement their app as a PWA. It obviously saves lots of money and time because their is only one target platform with one set of tools.

The really interesting thing to me is how PWAs are beginning to eat into mobile app development. There seems to be a movement where tech companies are trying again to move back to using their website as their only product. I’ve seen demos from Twitter and Lyft where their entire app happens through a browser. If this trend continues then Microsoft’s position to break back into mobile is looking better and better.

What do you think, do PWAs give new life to a mobile device from Microsoft?

(sorry for the click-bait headline. I just thought Paul would cringe at the thought of PWAs being used as an excuse that Windows Mobile is not dead)

Comments (18)

18 responses to “Paul is going to hate this line of logic”

  1. Paul Thurrott

    Windows Mobile is dead. :)

    • TheJoeFin

      In reply to paul-thurrott:

      haha I agree 100%

      but a 6in Windows 10 ARM based device which can power a docking station with keyboard, mouse, and monitors running Windows 10 can run all old legacy Windows 10 when docked and all modern PWAs when docked or not. The ARM chip also enables LTE, GPS, Gyro, NFC, etc.

      That would be an awesome device which I totally see businesses buying for their employees, especially those who only need a email, calendar, a browser, and a couple old LOBs.

      (to be extremely clear, I don't think this device is the next big mainstream device, but I think it could be the next business device to beat)

      • hrlngrv

        In reply to TheJoeFin:

        How many Windows 10 ARM devices have made it to market already so that there's sufficient evidence that they'd handle all the old 32-bit software Windows 10 on Intel/AMD can handle? You may be taking too much on faith believing Windows/ARM can handle all old software flawlessly.

      • skane2600

        In reply to TheJoeFin:

        IMO, there's no business case for such a device. A worker who performs only simple computing tasks has no need to have a smartphone purchased by their employer. The cost/performance ratio for an expensive phone along with a dock and standard peripherals would be poor compared to a modest PC.

        I'm not entirely clear on the device you're describing, however. If it ran Windows on ARM it wouldn't require a dock to run 32bit desktop programs (although they'd suck on a small screen) if instead it used Continuum which would require a dock, it wouldn't be able to run legacy programs - it would just allow specially designed UWP apps to look better on a big screen. Or perhaps you mean the dock would be running full Windows, in which case it would be essentially a PC that requires a smartphone to use.

        Maybe I'm missing something.

        • TheJoeFin

          In reply to skane2600:

          My previous company bought smartphones for employees they thought needed them. If those employees could have a single device which held all their data and communications I think they would prefer it over an Android phone, laptop, and laptop dock with attached monitor, mouse, & keyboard.

          The phone could run full x86 programs when undocked, it would just be difficult (maybe a pen would make it workable) but connecting to a dock would be a convenience thing for people and help them multitask.

          I think an Elite x3 that could run all x86 Windows programs becomes interesting in a way the x3 by its self was not.

  2. Bats

    Movement? No, there is no movement. Native Apps are better, because it's faster.

    Even if Microsoft does come back with a brand new mobile, nobody should buy it. Microsoft hardware technologies are old made to look new again. They don't have the genius and creative minds to come up with something new and build the necessary momentum to build upon it. Not just that, they can't do anything fast enough. Consider Microsoft products dead and anything they make a living dead (aka "walker").

    It's never about the product. It's all about what the company can do for you and how best they can give it to you. For example Google has a plethora of cloud and information and entertainment services that people need and use and Android is a way to give to them. Same thing can be said with Amazon and their consumer products and services. Microsoft? Just Office 365 rentals. What's so funny, is how MS Office is so overplayed by Microsoft. It seems like everything they make is designed so people can check the Outlook email and Calendar. Microsoft is so "work-minded" they make me laugh.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to Bats:

      Consider the FOSS software titles available for both Linux and Windows and probably also macOS, most with the preponderance of their source code common across all OSes, those using Qt or Gtk needing even less OS-specific source code. Outside of mobile, where's the pressing need for PWAs? Sure, if a given PWA is the best alternative among all the mobile, browser-based and local OS-specific alternatives, it should have a lot of users, or if it's better value (e.g., Pixlr for free vs Adobe anything for those who'd touch up fewer than a dozen photos a year). But how much top-value PWA software is there likely to be?

      • jimchamplin

        In reply to hrlngrv:

        Throwing the upvote in here.

        Cross-platform native software is far more valuable than web apps. It's why Microsoft's investment in Xamarin will be far more valuable than "pure" UWP since Xamarin is well...

        ... actually universal. UWP runs on any kind of Windows. Write something with Xamarin and in can run pretty much anywhere. Qt and GTK deliver the very same thing, and deliver it very well.

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  5. hrlngrv

    For some things, native code will always be better.

    I figure the real future of computing is faster, more reliable, broader coverage networking used to tie local machines of varying levels of power and capabilities to centralized servers which run virtualized desktop sessions and run native code software server-side and present just the UI on local machines. Large enterprises are already way down this road, and smaller businesses and other organizations will follow in the next decade.

    At some point, Amazon and Google may offer remote virtual desktops in addition to online services to individual consumers/users, and MSFT will be forced to follow suit. At that point, with a decent network connection, you'd be able to run whatever Windows software you want remotely and interact with it using whatever local device you want, and that local device won't need to run Windows. You'd also have the option of running the same software locally, but you'd likely end up running it locally as often as you'd run PWAs without any network connection.

    At some point, maybe not in just 1 decade, but certainly within 2 decades, there's going to be reliable networking everywhere inside statistical metropolitan areas and in a 20 mile penumbra beyond them and around major ground transportation corridors. At that point, the perception of needing to run software locally will be as idiosyncratic as the desire today to use only single-tasking OSes.

    IOW, all technologies for running software locally will become obsolete aside from OSes for local devices, browsers and other connectivity software, and maybe media players and a handful of games. IOW, local devices will need only the facilities of advanced feature phones. No, that won't include gamers, independent/part-time developers, home office types running very compute-intensive software, but it'll cover the other 95% of computing device users.

  6. skane2600

    Well, it's true that PWAs are one of the latest in a long series of software development fads that were going to be the "future" but fell short of expectations. Time will tell, but generally anything that is promised to do more than be just another tool in the toolkit is going to be unable to live up to that promise.

  7. rameshthanikodi

    Microsoft's mismanagement of Windows Phone, Nokia, Windows Mobile, or whatever the hell it's called now, deserves no attention from consumers. They don't deserve any success. They can have a nice product, the mythical Surface Phone can rise from the ashes, but the issue is no longer the product, it's trust. They have burnt many loyal customers from WM 6.5, WP7, WP8, WM10. They need to try at least three times as hard as Google/Apple just to win any trust, and my advice to anyone is to not count on Microsoft throwing even half of of what Apple is spending on iOS development.

  8. Roger Ramjet

    Well if PWAs ruled everything, then the question isn't about Microsoft in mobile per se. What happens is all OS platform plays become less relevant, desktop, mobile, you name it. The network effects barrier to enter that club drops, a lot. Power moves to the Cloud services, and to whoever has the most value providing end use cross platform software (plural) with large user bases that can be monetized. I think Microsoft and Google would be OK in that world, Apple would have to make some adjustments.

    • TheJoeFin

      In reply to Roger Ramjet:

      Agreed. To me, Apple is treading water with design. Their new AR push is already being worked on in the web with WebVR. Apple needs to convert their services from iOS only to paid services on every device before too many of their customers get lured out of their walled garden by Android on mobile and Windows on laptop/desktop.

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