Microsoft this week adopted a whole slew of “fairness principles” for its Windows app store. The list of principles does look like a decent set of guidelines for both consumers and developers—but it also looks a whole lot like Microsoft is taking the metaphorical ball, throwing it at Apple’s face, and daring their iCompetitor to make the next move.
The principles, which Microsoft listed in a corporate blog post, essentially promise that Windows will keep on doing what it already does with regard to app distribution, interoperability, payment systems, and everything else.
The first item, for example, promises that developers may choose whether to distribute Windows programs through the Microsoft Store or through their own competing app storefronts. This has always been the case, and it’s why Steam, the Epic Games store, and every other Windows software distribution method exist. Windows also promises not to block an app from Windows “based on a developer’s choice of which payment system to use” for processing in-app purchases which, again, is why and how both Web-based and app-based digital software storefronts for Windows exist.