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Redmond’s Project IslandWood is being used by Instagram’s developers to port the popular iOS app to the Windows Store, continuing Microsoft’s push to get more Universal Windows Apps in the Store.

An important app that is currently available in the iOS App Store is close to being launched on Microsoft’s Windows Store, with the Instagram app the latest to benefit from Redmond’s Project IslandWood.

The easy criticism that the Windows Store lacks the amount of apps as iOS and Android is slowly losing its potency, ever since Microsoft opened the door for developers on those platforms to easily port their applications and games to the Store.

It is slow going of course, but more and more apps are making the journey from iOS to the Windows Store, and if Microsoft’s plan can continue to gain traction, the flood gates could open soon.

Microsoft has already shown how easy it is to port an app from Apple’s platform to Windows, with a demonstration of a five minute process to convert an iOS game to a Universal Windows App.

Instagram likely takes longer to convert, but the process is the same thanks to Project IslandWood, allowing developers to make minor tweaks to the app code without having to start from scratch. Getting one of the major social networks on the Windows Store is obviously big news for Microsoft in its continued push for more apps and games.

Moving Forward with Project IslandWood

The Windows Store has oft been criticized for its lack of major name apps compared to rival platforms, and while that is not the only problem the platform faces, more apps could make Windows 10 a more appealing proposition.

According to WindowsBlogItalia, the Universal Windows version of the Instagram app is currently available in beta form, but we imagine Microsoft is waiting for the 2016 BUILD Conference next month to give more details. The company will also discuss the Universal Windows App idea more in-depth and do not be surprised if Redmond talks about other apps being ported through Project IslandWood.

Last year, Microsoft announced that it was killing Project Astoria, a similar porting toolkit as IslandWood, but specifically for Android applications. The company said all ports will now be made through iOS, meaning developers wanting to port an Android app need to develop an iOS version first.

That is not exactly a major problem as most apps are available on both iOS and Android anyway. The Windows Store currently has 500,000 apps, with 390,000 currently available on mobiles, which lags behind rivals, iOS (1.5 million) and Android (1.6 million).

SOURCE: WindowsBlogItalia