back to article Oh dear, Universal Windows Platform: Microsoft says 'no plans to release WinUI 3 for UWP in a stable way'

Microsoft's Universal Windows Platform (UWP), once touted as the future of Windows development, will not be getting updated for WinUI 3 according to current plans, software giant said in a community call. The WinUI Community Call yesterday was conducted on Google's YouTube platform "because Teams wasn't always accessible/ …

  1. Joe W Silver badge

    And that's the reason we cannot have nice things!

    At least one of the reasons why developers jumped ship from Windows Phone was (allegedly, I'm no app developer) the constant platform changes, with the needs to rewrite your apps for the new platform, that was supposed to be universal, and life was going to be so much simpler, and for the long term, and univeral and all fluffy bunnies and unicorns - until two years or so later the next platform change all of a sudden happened with similar promises attached. I can totally understand people not wanting to commit to that any more. So: fewer apps, nobody wants a phone that does not have you baking / public transport / whatever app, fewer people buy it, fewer devs bother because it's a small market segment, even fewer apps...

    I miss my windows phone (and that's coming from a long time linux user).

    1. Ozan

      Re: And that's the reason we cannot have nice things!

      I miss windows tablet actually.

    2. Blackjack Silver badge

      Re: And that's the reason we cannot have nice things!

      There was also the fact that Windows for phones was utter crap for way too long and that Microsoft could never carve a niche in the phone market.

      I mean sometimes it could work well, some good Dreamcast games were made in Windows CE, But overall... Windows for phones was not any good until Windows 8... and unfortunately Windows 8 was only good for stuff that mostly used a touchscreen.

  2. Lee D

    And this is why I don't program Windows desktop apps any more:

    "WinUI is the native UI platform for Windows 10 and Windows 11," said Microsoft program manager Ana Wishnoff. She explained that "WinUI 2 is the 2nd generation of the native UX stack in Windows. It's built for UWP apps. WinUI 3 is a new 3rd generation of the native UX stack in Windows. It consolidates the UX technologies previously built into Windows into a single decoupled framework that ships as part of the Windows App SDK, previously known as Project Reunion."

    What a mess, not to mention the junk that is .NET Framework.

    This shite is all going to be carried forward for 20-25 years in the name of compatibility.

  3. Filippo Silver badge

    Just like I did for all previous platforms, I'm not even looking at it until it has so much inertia that Microsoft is forced to support it forever or nearly so. I've used MFC until .NET was on version three, and I'm only now considering Core.

  4. Abominator

    Another day another UI framework.

    I honestly hate developing on Windows these days. There are so many frameworks and they are all dog slow.

    What worked was MFC and C++ or WinForms. But then came along presentation foundation and so on with ever slower and more inefficient UI's that make modern hardware hurt. It's utterly painful.

    I just use QT these days. It's not perfect, but I can just develop on a Mac and do some checks on Windows as an afterthought.

    If I do want something pretty on windows MFC + BCG ControlBar.

    1. Def Silver badge

      I recently dug up my old UI engine that was originally written for games. It's almost at the point now where I can use it for games, mobile applications, or desktop applications on any platform that supports GPU rendering. (It actually is there - I'm basically just adding support for more exotic control types on an on-going basis as and when I need them.)

      Fuck Microsoft's constant API changes and redirections. Fuck being restrained to different APIs and paradigms on different form factors. All software I write going forward will use a single, consistent API that is flexible enough to work anywhere.

    2. cookieMonster
      Thumb Up

      So on the ball

      I had originally planned to go the Golang/web UI path to get a single code base for desktop apps (Linux, Mac & Windows), the Golang part was super nice but the web UI part was terrible, gave up and went Python & Qt, works great

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge

      the target... it's _MOVING_ ...

      Another day another UI framework.

      Micros~1 "Moving Target" (their new product)

      From article: will not be reassuring to UWP developers

      All 14 of them

      Also from article: Another way of looking at this is that Microsoft tried to get Windows developers to adopt its UWP model but too many of them refused

      Yeah Lucy can only move the football so many times before MOST of us realize we're just getting jerked around and then we won't try kicking it any more.

    4. DrXym Silver badge

      MFC is a product of its day. If you obeyed the framework it was great. If you needed something the framework didn't support (which was a lot) you were in a mess of pain. I remember writing complex MDI applications where I basically had to copy and paste entire MFC classes because I needed to modify a single line of functionality which wasn't exposed through virtual methods or whatever.

      QT is a good solution because it does more out of the box but it uses GPL3 for certain components to compel certain commercial users to buy VERY expensive licenses. You can just about get away with QT in desktop apps but for devices it's not so easy.

  5. bduddy

    Ding, dong, the witch is dead

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Witch one? ActiveX? Silverlight? Universal windows that only works on some versions?

  6. karlkarl Silver badge

    "Focus is on persuading desktop developers to refresh applications for Windows 11"

    You mean, keep with Win32 API and never bother with their newer / suggested APIs ever?

    Sure. Did anyone ever do otherwise? ;)

    1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Did anyone ever do otherwise? ;)

      Dear Microsoft,

      There is no business case for third-party developers to re-write their UI to offer no *functional* improvements to their end-users, but to restrict (however slightly) the range of Windows versions that it runs on.

      There is arguably a negative business case if they are unable to re-write all of their software at once, because customers *will* notice that the look and feel of the app is inconsistent (like your Control Panel / Settings farce that has been running for a decade now). On the other hand, they probably won't care, because 99% of their customers don't give a shit about look and feel as long as it presents a UI in a coherent way (unlike your Control Panel / Settings farce).

      This does not strike me as a difficult concept to grasp. I am therefore somewhat bewildered that you have tried to do exactly this at least half a dozen times over the last 25 years, each time chipping away at usability with "features" like hiding keyboard shortcuts, hiding system menus, hiding window borders, hiding entire, yet new, features like the "charm" thingy, etc.

    2. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Yup, stick with Win32. Newer APIs will arrive and be discontinued, and your code will continue to run.

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      keep with Win32 API. *YES* !!!

      I still code old-school dialog-based applications with MFC on occasion, usually specialized code that has a specific use and so I want to make it work as fast as possible without any fiddle-farting with the UI.

      The last one i did borrowed code from a Linux application written in C as a proof of concept for a customer. The Linux code uses the serial port [I wrote the open source comms code it made use of, and it had Win32 versions already there with #ifdef blocks, so the port was simple].

      Point is, for someone who's been coding for windows FOR 30 YEARS, I've got a lot of sample code I could copy/pasta to make rapid prototypes with. I don't need some "new, shiny" to render all of my experience and sample code *WORTHLESS*.

      So I stick with what I'm good at - Win32 and MFC.

    4. DrXym Silver badge

      I've spent decades on Win32 and it is fine for a basic program, e.g. a task bar icon and a couple of dialogs, or if its a legacy product that needs to be maintained. But I really wouldn't want to go near it otherwise.

      That isn't to say Microsoft are helping because they're not. I've lost count of the number of times they've heralded a new way of app development only to abandon it for another down the road.

      I definitely would not use Win32 for apps that require a modern look & feel, or need to work on high DPI displays, or utilize accelerated rendering, or touch / pen, or just have a clean set of widgets with decent layout models. My first preference would be QT but these days even something like Electron would be a good platform.

  7. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

    As above, so below...

    So the TL:DR of it all is they're as clueless and lost on the under-the-hood API and framework side of things as they are at the surface with all the GUI and user interface "polishing" and corner-rounding.

    A pinball path to progress...

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft says 'no plans to release [product] in a stable way'

    So what else is new?

  9. K Cartlidge

    All I want is ...

    I've been using C# since around 2001 (alongside Go, Python, Ruby, Delphi, etc) and love it. But Microsoft is braindead when it comes to the UI area. It's bad enough they have so many 'technologies', but then they make it even worse by renaming them - it's reached the point that there are now more names than platforms/frameworks (!) and you can't rely on *any* of them lasting.

    All I want is C# and Core (both very good) with the ability to compile native code against native or near-UIs (eg Cocoa, GTK, GDI+, whatever). I'd even settle quite happily for long-term supported native compiles of WinForms in Core (not the old full fat Framework).

    As it is, my go-to for desktop apps is now Delphi. Well, to be honest, even with their community edition the Delphi value proposition sucks so it's actually Lazarus and FreePascal. Why can't the billions of dollars at Microsoft match what the people at Lazarus/FreePascal (and similar stacks) have done? Instead they waste their time reinventing the same thing or (worse) trying to force everything into a browser rendering engine.

    C# is good. Core is good. I even prefer Windows 10 over my M1 Mac. So how do they still get this UI development tooling aspect so messed up?

  10. WDSUnRegister

    the famous societies of computer world

    the moment has happened in targeted born into going to school

    individuals raised to acknowledge Santa Claws was a lie, societies then where made to be smart;

    talks had then spread the streets in the realization of a planet lost in space

    cultural beings sneaking hosts of perceptions from candy to beer - so -

    witches that got corrupted into the talks had condemned societies into acknowledge the fame from the streets;

    that is where computers where first seen from the programming skills and the logical mind of the productivity

    of that now, windows becoming a host out of the desktop applications into ghostbusters receptacle of souls;

    the wise endeavors of shadow streets, that from windows, are casting lights from the new devices;

    Windows Presentation Foundation : bringing culture to your new social mind; Like and Subscribe the App Experience;

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