Earlier this year, Microsoft made some significant changes to the Microsoft Store for Business and Education. Specifically, the company stopped the ability to buy paid apps on that store in a sign we predicted meant that part of the marketplace would close (not for the first time). Microsoft has now confirmed that is the case through the release of Windows 11.
According to the company, the Microsoft Store for Business and Education will not be part of Windows 11. Of course, the new Windows versions includes an overhauled Microsoft Store and will launch this fall.
So, where does this leave enterprise customers who want to deploy the apps or find business and education apps? Well, Microsoft says from early 2022, those customers can manage applications on devices through Microsoft Intune. Alternatively, they can use their unified endpoint management (UEM) service.
Microsoft explains how this will work for customers:
“Starting in the first half of 2022 you will be able to find applications from the entire breadth of the Microsoft Store catalog and deploy to your managed devices all from within Microsoft Intune, or your unified endpoint management (UEM) solution. This will include support for all the new (and existing) app types coming to the new Microsoft Store including Win32, .NET, Universal Windows Platform (UWP), and Progressive Web Apps (PWAs).”
Users with unmanaged devices can deploy and find apps through Windows Package Manager, specifically the WinGet feature. However, during 2022, Microsoft Store for Business and Education will remain through 2022 before being shuttered in Q1 2023.
Firstly, Windows 10 users will still have access, but those on Windows 11 will not have the store. However, device managers can access through their UEM to deploy apps on Windows 11. In 2023, the service will close completely.
As there are probably plenty of organizations with a lot of questions to ask, Microsoft has included a FAQ on its announcement blog.
Tip of the day: Do you know that Windows 10 now has a package manager similar to Linux called “Winget”? In our tutorial, we show you how to install and use this new tool that allows the quick installation of apps via PowerShell or a GUI.