Windows 8 Metro apps can now be tested on an iPad

If you are working on an app that's supposed to run on Windows 8's Metro interface, it may be hard to find a tablet or touch screen that can actually support the many touch gestures of the new operating system. Now a company called Splashtop (via ZDnet) has come up with a program that allows Windows 8 Metro app creators to test their software on a very popular touch screen device: Apple's iPad.

Splashtop has released the Win8 Metro Testbed program on Apple's iOS App Store for $24.99. The program also requires a Windows 8 PC to be set up with Splashtop's free streamer program. Once both apps are installed, you can then stream your Windows 8 app wirelessly on your PC so you can use it on an iPad.

The Win8 Metro Testbed program allows app developers to test how their touch screen features work. It supports swiping from the left of the iPad to switch between Windows 8 apps and also supports swiping from the right to view the Windows 8 Charms menu. The app lets developers test the Windows 8 "snaps" feature which allows two Metro apps to run side by side along with pulling down an app from the top of the screen to close it.

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Does this mean that you could (in theory at least) run that android emulator thingy on your Wndows 8 desktop, and show it on your iPad? o_0

Only one thing comes to mind at a time like this...

We have to go deeper....

kurupy said,
Does this mean that you could (in theory at least) run that android emulator thingy on your Wndows 8 desktop, and show it on your iPad? o_0

Only one thing comes to mind at a time like this...

We have to go deeper....

A Metro version of Bluestacks... what an awesome thought... Android apps on a Windows tablet :-)

Or just go get a Samsung Slate 7 series tablet PC and off you go. Why would you want to "test" on some configuration that nobody is going to use? Why not test on something a little closer to what your users will actually use. Even Samsung has a page for this.

http://www.samsung.com/global/windowspreview/

I appreciate these people trying to sell their software but any serious developer who relies on this for UX testing deserves to be shot in the head.

Obry said,
Or just go get a Samsung Slate 7 series tablet PC and off you go. Why would you want to "test" on some configuration that nobody is going to use? Why not test on something a little closer to what your users will actually use. Even Samsung has a page for this.

http://www.samsung.com/global/windowspreview/

I appreciate these people trying to sell their software but any serious developer who relies on this for UX testing deserves to be shot in the head.

That tablet is $1000 and most developers probably have access to an iPad already. And how is the actual touch experience any different from what you get with a Samsung tablet based on the video they showed?

Obry said,

I appreciate these people trying to sell their software but any serious developer who relies on this for UX testing deserves to be shot in the head.

Uh, the UX is the same since it streams from a Win8 PC. The fact that it's not a Windows tablet makes little difference considering every manufacturer will have their own design. Why shell out several hundred dollars for a new device when you can spend $25 instead?

Umm if you're any serious about developing an app, you would surely shell out that money. If you're just playing around, experimenting, I guess this is fine but that's as far as I would go with an iPad - experimenting.

Yes, manufacturers will have different designs but none of them will stream your app over another device using some sort of RDP software.

Obry said,
Umm if you're any serious about developing an app, you would surely shell out that money. If you're just playing around, experimenting, I guess this is fine but that's as far as I would go with an iPad - experimenting.

Yes, manufacturers will have different designs but none of them will stream your app over another device using some sort of RDP software.

I'm sure you're aware of the idea of proof-of-concept. There's no reason to commit fully to a new type of project if you can test the functionality for a much lower cost. This jargon about being "serious" or "just experimenting" is irrelevant in cases where it's the bottom line that matters.

Obry said,
Umm if you're any serious about developing an app, you would surely shell out that money. If you're just playing around, experimenting, I guess this is fine but that's as far as I would go with an iPad - experimenting.

Yes, manufacturers will have different designs but none of them will stream your app over another device using some sort of RDP software.

Erm, no. Being serious about developing an app is irrelevant and has nothing to do with it. Why buy a brand new Samsung tablet when most devs will already have access to an ipad that can offer the exact same testing experience for the app?

Also the fact that the monitor image is being streamed to the iPad and touch feedback streamed back to the PC is irrelevant. The app is running on a Windows 8 PC whichever option you choose, the testing platform is therefore identical and only costs an extra $25 on top of the hardware you already have.

TCLN Ryster said,

Erm, no. Being serious about developing an app is irrelevant and has nothing to do with it. Why buy a brand new Samsung tablet when most devs will already have access to an ipad that can offer the exact same testing experience for the app?

Also the fact that the monitor image is being streamed to the iPad and touch feedback streamed back to the PC is irrelevant. The app is running on a Windows 8 PC whichever option you choose, the testing platform is therefore identical and only costs an extra $25 on top of the hardware you already have.

If your developing a app that you plan to sell, i hope you have real hardware to test on and not a emulator or rdp client for testing.

So does this mean the ipad supports Windows 8 gestures or are we looking at just a fancy RDP program that could be used with a regular PC with touchscreen monitor or actual Windows tablets like the Samsung Slate, Acer W500, ExoPC, Asus EP121? Why even bother developing for Windows 8 at all if all you're going to do is run the programs on an ipad?

efjay said,
So does this mean the ipad supports Windows 8 gestures or are we looking at just a fancy RDP program that could be used with a regular PC with touchscreen monitor or actual Windows tablets like the Samsung Slate, Acer W500, ExoPC, Asus EP121? Why even bother developing for Windows 8 at all if all you're going to do is run the programs on an ipad?

Splashtop has always been a "fancy RDP program". The only difference (I think) is that this supports the multi-touch gestures i.e. this version passes the multi-touch points to the host system (running Win8) whereas the regular Splashtop emulates a mouse cursor.

And why bother, you ask? Because devs hope to have their apps available when Windows 8 launches (you know, try to catch the early wave of users - your app is more prominent if you launch earlier as there are fewer apps around). And not many devs own a touchscreen monitor or Windows 7 tablet. Splashtop is expecting (it seems) that there are more devs interested in developing for W8 than devs that own a Windows tablet, hence the app. The app is named "Win8 Metro Testbed" - notice the word Testbed? It is for devs, not for users.

If anything, the app would encourage more devs to make better apps for W8 (now they can test the gestures instead of simulating them with a mouse).

If you already have a Samsung Series 7 slate (or any of the other tablets you mentioned) then don't bother purchasing this app. But Metro will only allow you to run one app docked at the side if you're on a screen with a horizontal res of at least 1366 - so this excludes all the above tablets except the Samsung and ExoPC. Devs should test that their app works fine when docked at the side as well. Since Splashtop is an RDP-like app I guess they do some rescaling to simulate 1366 pixels into the iPad's display.

Edited by Kai Y, Apr 12 2012, 6:53pm :

tmaxxtigger said,
Awesome idea until the Windows 8 tablets make their apperance!

Actually it would be a great trojan for MS if they bought them and got iOS and Android tablet users exposed to Windows 8. They'd see how much more functional it is in a tablet environment and might encourage a number of users to switch. Even if they didn't switch, they could create a service to front it for iOS users and make money via a company like Onlive.

The best of both worlds?

Drewidian said,

Actually it would be a great trojan for MS if they bought them and got iOS and Android tablet users exposed to Windows 8. They'd see how much more functional it is in a tablet environment and might encourage a number of users to switch.

The best of both worlds?


Spoken like a true Microsoft fanatic.

Drewidian said,

Actually it would be a great trojan for MS if they bought them and got iOS and Android tablet users exposed to Windows 8. They'd see how much more functional it is in a tablet environment and might encourage a number of users to switch. Even if they didn't switch, they could create a service to front it for iOS users and make money via a company like Onlive.

The best of both worlds?

Considering this is essentially a remote desktop client connection to a Windows 8 PC, the experience would be so sub-par it probably wouldn't be worth normal use.

MS already has made an HTML5 "preview" of Windows Phone 7 that was really quite excellent. For a web application, it was super responsive and very impressive. It would be awesome if they made one for Windows 8.
http://m.microsoft.com/windowsphone/en-us/demo

Simon- said,

Spoken like a true Microsoft fanatic.

How is it that if you like something Microsoft puts out, you get labelled a "fanboy" or "fanatic"? You all likes Windows XP and Windows 7 too, guess that makes you Microsoft "fanboys" too huh?

TCLN Ryster said,

How is it that if you like something Microsoft puts out, you get labelled a "fanboy" or "fanatic"? You all likes Windows XP and Windows 7 too, guess that makes you Microsoft "fanboys" too huh?

I think it was the "MS should do X so that Apple and Google customers switch to them because they have a better product" sentiment in your original post that caused the backlash... just guessing.

CentralDogma said,

Or VNC. Both of which have clients on the App store already.

But do any of them translate touch over to the host PC? No, all they do is convert touches to mouse movements and clicks on the host, which doesn't help to test your Win8 app in any way.