Microsoft opens doors to Metro app store for Windows 8

All apps are free for now; Windows Store accessible only with Windows 8 Consumer Preview

Microsoft today made good on its promise to open the doors to its Windows Store alongside the launch of the public Windows 8 preview.

Windows Store - Microsoft's name for the app store-style distribution channel it's assigned as the sole source of Metro-style apps for Windows 8 - requires the Consumer Preview that debuted earlier Wednesday .

Through the stretch between now and the release of Windows 8's final code - most expect that milestone this fall in time for the holiday season - all Windows Store apps will be free for the downloading and installing, Microsoft has said.

Among the apps offered today on the Windows Store were eight winners of a contest Microsoft kicked off in early December, 2011 that promised placement in the market as well as prizes that included a developer PC.

The winners ranged from several games and a weather forecasting app to an e-cookbook and a financial portfolio tracker.

Other apps that debuted today included the ubiquitous Cut the Rope game, a Metro edition of Evernote and apps created by newspapers such as USA Today and the Los Angeles Times.

Microsoft has said that the Windows Store will be the only authorized distributor of Metro apps -- the touch-first programs that rely on an simplistic interface borrowed from Windows Phone -- but that the store will eventually include links to titles written for the traditional x86/64 Windows desktop.

The company will take a 30% cut of app revenue up to $25,000 -- the same percentage Apple earns for software sold through its Mac App Store -- but will slash its slice to 20% after that bar is reached.

Enterprises will also be able to circumvent the Windows Store by "sideloading" internally-created apps directly to workers' devices and computers. Today, Microsoft provided more information on sideloading and Metro app management on its website.

Earlier versions of Windows, including the now-current Windows 7, cannot access the Windows Store.

Microsoft has not yet disclosed the release date for Windows 8, but Windows chief Steven Sinofsky said today that the development cycle would emulate that of Windows 7, with a near-final "Release Candidate" next in line, followed by a build that will be marked "Release to Manufacturing" to signal it's ready to pass along to computer makers.

Microsoft's Windows Store -- the sole source of Metro apps for Windows 8 -- opened for business today.

Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer , on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed . His email address is gkeizer@computerworld.com .

See more by Gregg Keizer on Computerworld.com .

Read more about windows in Computerworld's Windows Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Gregg Keizer

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?