Tim Sweeney: Windows 10 Cloud is a kind of ransomware

[German]Microsoft hasn't announced 'Windows Cloud' (aka Windows 10 Cloud), but Epic Games co-founder Tim Sweeney continues his attacks on Windows 10. He says "Windows Cloud is ransomware", and I would say, his position isn't false at all.


What's Windows Cloud?

Well, Microsoft hasn't announced 'Windows Cloud' (aka Windows 10 Cloud) – back in the last millennium we would say "it's a kind of vapor ware" – but nowadays it's common to speculate about unreleased things.

Rumors says Windows 10 Cloud (or Windows Cloud in short) seems to be Microsoft's answer to Google`s Chromebook. A reduced version of Windows 10, that only allow its users to execute UWP apps from Windows Store. A few impressions about Windows 10 Cloud, obtained from an early build, may be found within my blog post A closer look at Windows 10 Cloud.

The problem with UWP apps

UWP stands for Universal Windows Platform, Microsoft's approach to unify apps for several Windows 10 devices (desktop, mobile, Xbox). UWP apps can be obtained only from Microsoft's Windows store.

And there is another project from Microsoft: The desktop brigde Centennial, that allows developers to convert Win32 desktop app to apps, shipped via Microsoft's Windows Store. Microsoft has begin to convert it's Win32 desktop apps like WordPad, XPS Viewer etc. to apps and offer it via Windows Store (see).

This will be a kind of monopolizing the way, how Windows applications will be distributable in future. Microsoft's goal is clear: The company will become the "gate keeper" and decide, which apps may distributed via Windows Store. Developers will be locked in a worse position, if Microsoft's strategy fits.


Tim Sweeney warns about that strategy

Tim Sweeney, the Epic Games co-founder, warns since months about Microsoft's strategy to lure app developers to distribute apps via Windows Store. Sweeney called Microsoft's UWP platform a few months ago 'a walled garden' (see this neowin.net article and The Guardian article).  He was cited as:

The specific problem here is that Microsoft's shiny new "Universal Windows Platform" is locked down, and by default it's impossible to download UWP apps from the websites of publishers and developers, to install them, update them, and conduct commerce in them outside of the Windows Store.

A position, that can't be proved wrong. Both articles transports even more insights to this development. But now, it seems Microsoft will come to the market with "Windows Cloud" – a platform that is locked down to UWP apps obtainable from the store. In a "stream" of Tweets continues now to warn about "Windows Cloud" and called it ransomware.

Also, the position reflected in those tweets aren't wrong. A user locked on Windows Cloud can't use third party Windows applications like Firefox, Thunderbird, Google Chrome and so on. Also Win32 apps converted with Centennial and available from Windows Store seems not to be executable in Windows 10 Cloud. It's simple a "lockout of applications, a user can't use anymore" – a thing known from ransomware. The folks at neowin.net has compiled some further statements from Tim Sweeney here. What do you think about Tim Sweeney's position and the risk of Microsoft's UWP strategy?

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