Code updates focus on multi-screen, multi-service and access to Cortana

Wednesday at Build 2014, Microsoft announced updates that put developers first with a focus on interoperability across devices and the cloud, while granting access to Cortana, our take on the virtual personal assistant.

“Our strategy for creating developer opportunity is to deliver unified experiences across innovative devices and services in a way that is highly extensible,” says Kevin Gallo, Windows Phone director of program management. “That means providing a common Windows runtime across phones, tablets and PC, using a single powerful toolset, centralizing the Store infrastructure and demonstrating a clear commitment to interoperability.”

Microsoft will embrace more kinds of code and share more of its work with the developer community, while removing road blocks, Gallo adds. As part of this effort, Visual Studio Update 2 RC includes Universal Projects, which allows developers to create apps that tailor easily to experiences across multiple screens.

Microsoft is also making the API available for virtual assistant Cortana, and will expose new enhancements to the Speech API that allow developers to directly utilize more types of natural verbal exchanges in app creation.

Developers will be able to interact with tablets and Windows computers in new ways as well. With the release of Kinect for Windows v2 in June, developers can build Kinect apps for the Windows Store and publish or commercially deploy them later this summer.

For more from Gallo and from Build, check out the Building Apps for Windows Blog.

You might also be interested in:

· Windows Phone 8.1: Cortana will take your questions now
· Windows 8.1 Update offers a more familiar experience for those who like Windows desktop
· Jamming at the corner of Cloud and Mobile

Aimee Riordan
Microsoft News Center Staff