Apple is working on merging its iOS and Mac apps in 2018, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. The company is working on building a unified platform for apps that work across iPhones, iPads, and Macs — just like Microsoft’s Universal Windows Platform in Windows 10.
Cupertino is currently targetting the release of iOS 12 and macOS 10.14 for the launch of its new unified platform for apps. While it isn’t clear if the company will be merging the App Store for iOS and Mac apps, the company is expected to release tools required for developers to design a single app that works across all of its devices a bit earlier, possibly at WWDC 2018.
Apple has been rumoured to be unifying iOS and macOS for years now, even though the company’s current CEO Tim Cook isn’t a big fan of the unified experience. Back in 2012, Cook criticised the idea, saying “You can converge a toaster and a refrigerator, but those things are probably not going to be pleasing to the user.” But a unified platform was bound to happen, especially now that the company continues to invest in mobile computers like the iPad Pro and the modern Macbook.
Apple’s idea behind merging iOS and Mac apps is almost exactly like Microsoft’s Universal Windows Platform which allows developers to build a single app that can adapt across computers, laptops, tablets, phones, game consoles, AR headsets, headless hardware, and more. Microsoft’s Universal Windows Platform hasn’t been too much of a success, and it fails to attract any of the big names to build UWP apps to this date. iOS developers, on the other hand, are incredibly passionate about Apple and its platforms, so Apple–unlike Microsoft–doesn’t have to worry much about support from third-parties.