Microsoft Lures Android, iOS Developers With Vision For 1 Billion Windows 10 Devices

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Microsoft Build 2015

Microsoft has set a goal of getting  Windows 10 running on one billion devices in the next two to three years, and now it's trying to make it easier for Apple and Android developers to get in on the action.

Windows 10, slated for worldwide release this summer, will run on all kinds of devices, from smartphones and small tablets to PCs and digital displays. This wide range of devices -- and an expected 1 billion-strong base of devices running it -- will greatly expand opportunities for developers, according to CEO Satya Nadella.

"We want to make sure every developer has the widest user base to target with your apps," Nadella said Wednesday at Microsoft's Build conference in downtown San Francisco.

[Related: Microsoft's Cloud Business Booms, But Windows Takes Beating In Mixed Q3]

At the event, Microsoft unveiled four new ways for developers to build apps in Windows 10 using the code they've built for apps on other platforms.

Developers will be able to take nearly all of the Java and C++ code they use to build Android apps and use it to build apps that run on Windows 10 devices, said Terry Myerson, executive vice president of Microsoft's Operating Systems group (OSG).

Myerson said Windows Phones will include an Android subsystem that will let them run apps that use both Android and Windows 10 code. This could let an Android developer expand the scope to Windows 10 and target the expected 1 billion-plus device base, he said.

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