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Microsoft fans may have heard of Project Rome already. The SDK initially launched with the Windows 10 Anniversary update and gave developers cross-platform engagement tools. Today, the Redmond giant has extended that reach to Android.

This speaks to the huge ideology shift of the company under CEO Satya Nadella. Microsoft is no longer a Windows-only company. It’s willing to bridge platform gaps to provide a better user experience.

Project Rome Features

Those changes come with plenty of capabilities for multi-platform developers. Currently, you can use Java and Xamarin for the following:

  • “The Remote Systems API to discover other Windows devices that the user owns. The Remote Systems APIs will allow the Contoso Music app to discover these devices on the same network, and through the cloud.
  • Once discovered, the Remote Launch API will launch [an] app on another Windows device.”

However, the biggest feature of Project Rome is yet to come. Microsoft describes a scenario in which users can control UWP apps on desktop from their Android device. For example, a user could have a music player on both devices. Using Project Rome, developers could provide the ability to pause, play and volume adjust from Android.

It’s a powerful tool that was previously limited to the Chromecast, Windows Mobile to Windows 10 and iOS to Mac. In the future users may be able to control desktop Netflix playback from their phone and many other apps.

Microsoft has made the SDK available for download on GitHub, alongside a sample project. You can find more details on setup via the Windows blog.