With Apple already hard at work getting iOS 12 and macOS 10.14 ready to be debuted during WWDC 2018, all of the key functionality is likely well into the planning stages. That means that any big changes to the way either platform works are already known within Apple, and now we might also have an inkling as to what to expect, too.
Writing for Bloomberg, notoriously well-connected Mark Gurman reports that Apple is planning to fix the Mac App Store’s engagement problem by allowing developers to release apps that are cross-platform in nature.
The App Store got its debut on the iPhone back in 2008, and on the Mac, more recently in 2011. Six years later, the adoption of the Mac App Store is nowhere near the level that Apple would likely have hoped, and it is this that is driving a rethink within the company. Starting next year, Gurman says, Apple will allow developers to launch apps that work across iOS and macOS as part of a single release.
Right now, developers must create two versions of any apps that they want to have present on both Mac and iOS devices. This would change all that, likely starting with an announcement at WWDC and a launch as part of iOS 12 and macOS 10.14 later in the year.
Codenamed “Marzipan,” the project to make apps cross-platform is expected to take multiple years but will start in 2018. The idea itself is nothing new, with Microsoft having already taken a similar route with Windows apps with somewhat success.
Gurman says that it is unclear whether the Mac App Store and iOS App Store will merge as part of the initiative, though it would potentially push Apple in a direction many have expected for years – the creation of a desktop and mobile operating system to replace macOS and iOS completely.
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