End of the Universal Windows Platform

Microsoft has announced that the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) is officially deprecated, six years after release, in favour of the new Windows App SDK for Windows app development.

Its announcement comes shortly after the release of Windows 11.

The UWP was initially aimed at allowing developers to build universal apps that run on Windows 10, Windows 10 Mobile, Xbox One, and the HoloLens.

However, Microsoft has now officially made the transition to Windows App SDK being the primary platform to develop Windows applications with.

The Windows App SDK focuses on desktop-based applications whereas UWP was aimed at developing apps to run on multiple platforms.

“We are making it easier and faster to build great desktop apps via the Windows App SDK and WinUI 3,” stated Microsoft principal program manager lead Thomas Fennel.

Microsoft said that the Windows App SDK offers several improvements over the UWP:

  • Use of the Windows UI 3 Library (Win UI 3)
  • .NET 5 compatibility
  • More frequent release timings that are separate from Windows updates
  • Improved runtime environments

The Windows App SDK will also be backwards compatible with Windows 10 version 1809.

From this point onwards, UWP will only receive “bug, reliability, and security fixes” and the platform will not be given any new features in the future.

Microsoft has stated that developers who are currently satisfied with the features of UWP can continue using it for now. Those who want to take advantage of new features will have no option but to migrate to Windows App SDK.

Microsoft has provided a guide for those wanting to migrate their UWP apps and projects to Windows App SDK:

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End of the Universal Windows Platform