Developers Will Rule at Microsoft’s Build Conference in 2016



Key highlights expected in Microsoft’s Build Conference 2016

Microsoft’s (MSFT) Build Conference 2016 is starting on March 30, 2016. It’s the annual event at which the company shares its software plans for the entire year.

Build Conference 2016 is expected to shed light on Microsoft’s cross-platform development strategy and how its newest acquisition Xamarin, a mobile app development platform provider, will contribute to this strategy.

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According to WinBeta, to make its Windows 10 Action Center and Cortana more interactive, Microsoft is expected to announce a Google-like (GOOG) (GOOGL) card user interface. Its cloud computing platform Azure will also be covered in respect to the Internet of Things (or IoT).

UWP (Universal Windows Platform), Microsoft’s latest technology, which enables the building of apps to run on any device ranging from a phone to a desktop, will likely be the most discussed technology at the Build Conference.

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Developers will hog the limelight at Build 2016

The 2015 Build Conference saw Microsoft’s announcing the availability of Google’s Android and Apple’s (AAPL) iOS apps on its Windows 10 OS (operating system), with the aim of expanding the reach and popularity of Windows 10 as a common platform for all computing devices.

Of late, Microsoft is taking several initiatives to attract the attention of developers, be it through acquisitions such as Xamarin or its latest OS, Windows 10. At Build 2016, developers will likely get much attention from the company. You can read Microsoft’s Xamarin Buyout: A Fight for Position among Developers to know more.

At the Microsoft Developer Conference 2015, the company announced web tools to enable developers to migrate apps from Apple devices and Android devices onto Windows devices, particularly smartphones, PCs, tablets, and Xbox consoles.

Developers prefer to build apps for Android and iOS devices, which are very popular among users, partly due to their vast app ecosystems. Microsoft, BlackBerry (BBRY), and other small players collectively command less than 5% of the market share.

Taking a step further to enhance the reach and visibility of Windows 10 to the developer community, Microsoft is keen on its latest UWP technology. Later in the series, we’ll discuss UWP and how Microsoft will benefit from it.

Investors who wish to gain exposure to Microsoft could consider investing in the Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK). XLK invests ~10.5% of its holdings in Microsoft. It also has ~33% exposure to application software.


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