Windows 8 users will be able to install any application purchased via the Windows Store on a number of up to five devices, Microsoft has announced.
Similarly with apps available in the Windows Phone Marketplace, software destined for Windows 8 will allow users to perform installations on multiple devices.
Clearly, this rule is meant only for paid Metro-style applications that are being pushed to users via the Windows Store.
“In recognition that you may have multiple PCs and are likely going to want your apps on each of them, we’ve made it easy to install and run all of your apps on up to a total of five Windows 8 PCs,” Microsoft’s Jonathan Wang, program manager on the Store client team, notes.
“Whenever you install an app on a new device, that device gets added to the list of devices that are allowed to run the app.”
As soon as the maximum number of installations is reached and users try to install the software on a sixth device, they will be prompted to uninstall the app from one of the PCs on the said list, so that they can put in on a new one.
Moreover, users will be able to filter apps installed on a specific PC, so that it would be easier to install them all on a new device. With a connected account (Windows Live ID), users will have settings and state from an application preserved across devices.
When it comes to updating applications, users will benefit from a simplified process as well. Windows 8 will check the Store to learn whether there are updates available for the installed applications.
“The tile for the Store will then show the number of updates available so that you have a clear indication that there’s something waiting for you in the Store,” Wang explains.
“When you get to the Updates page, you just have to tap a button to update all of your apps. All updates are automatically selected. We want to encourage all apps to be updated in a timely manner once the developer makes them available.”
Windows 8 will download updates in the background when the computer is idle, but will not install them. Moreover, it will download the updates only when on a WiFi network.
Users will also be able to opt out of automatically downloading the updates through the Store’s settings on their devices.
The same as when installing applications, Microsoft will take users to another page in the Store, to be able to browse for more apps.
“Once the update process begins, we will take you back to the previous page in the Store, so you can browse through new and interesting content while your updates are installed,” Wang explains.
The Windows Store service attached to Windows 8 is meant to provide users with the possibility to easily find software that is of interest to them, and sports a design optimized for that. The processes of finding and purchasing apps, installing and updating them have been aligned in this direction as well.
“Discovering, installing, and updating apps are all designed to be as simple and fast as possible. Because the app discovery process will be so easier than ever before for customers, we think the new Windows Store represents the largest ever opportunity for developers,” Wang concludes.