At its Windows 11 announcement today, Microsoft announced an overhaul of the Microsoft Store. We have already looked at support for Android apps, but the company revealed more besides that admittedly monumental news.

Firstly, the new Microsoft Store boasts a clean UI to fit with the rounded design language of Windows 11. In terms of feature changes, the big news is Microsoft seemingly relaxing its restrictions around applications.

For example, developers will now be able to submit unpackaged Win32 apps to the store, for example raw .exe builds. In a bold move clearly aimed at enticing developers, Microsoft says apps no longer need to be hosted on the Microsoft Store.

In other words, developers can use their own content delivery networks. Also for dev’s, it is now possible to use third-party commerce tools. Microsoft says these developers can keep 100% of the revenue they get from their apps. This is clearly a direct hit against Apple, which Microsoft has criticized for its revenue practices with the App Store.


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The idea behind relaxing the restriction is that more developers and more apps will come to the store. Furthermore, Windows 11 will also see more of Microsoft’s own apps appear on the store.

For example, Office, Edge, Teams, and Visual Studio will all be available. Microsoft says one benefit of the approach is more apps will be available in the store, helping users avoid downloading them from their browser.

Like Windows 11, the new Microsoft Store will land in preview next week. However, it will not launch fully until the fall. All Windows 10 users can upgrade to the new platform for free.

Tip of the day: Though many VPN providers have their own apps, you can in many cases connect to a VPN in Windows 10 without any third-party software. This is ideal if you have a self-hosted VPN or if you’re using a PC with restricted permissions. In our tutorial, we’re showing you how to connect to a VPN in Windows 10.