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What just happened? Microsoft is serious about making the Microsoft Store on Windows an “open store for an open platform.” The Redmond-based tech giant has updated its Microsoft Store on Windows policies to allow for third-party storefront apps to populate its service. This means that, just like any other app, you’ll soon be able to search for and install third-party app stores from the Microsoft Store, and they’ll have their own product details page.
Microsoft in announcing the change further noted that Amazon and Epic Games have already signed on to bring their storefronts to the Microsoft Store, and that they should be available within the next few months. There was no mention of Steam in today’s announcement, but Windows and device chief Panos Panay told The Verge back in June that they’d be interested in having Steam on the store.
The new policy comes just a few months after Microsoft took earlier steps to open up the Microsoft Store, including allowing developers to keep 100 percent of the revenue from their apps if they use their own payment platform (unless it is a game).
Microsoft’s policy is a breath of fresh air, especially in the wake of the battle between Apple and Epic. Despite a recent ruling in that legal battle, it looks like the war is far from over as Epic has already appealed the judge's ruling.
That said, not everyone is convinced of Microsoft's goodwill. Some believe the opening of the Microsoft Store to other platforms is little more than a PR move that paints the company in a positive light compared to its competitors.
The new Microsoft Store will open on October 5, the same day that Windows 11 launches.