Ported versions of utilities on Windows Store suggest Microsoft is testing Centennial

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Versions of utilities like WordPad, Character Map, and Paint have been found on the Windows Store. While these tools might not sound too exciting in their own right, they are noteworthy because they were converted into universal apps using Project Centennial.

Project Centennial is a development tool that takes some of the legwork out of turning Win32 desktop software into apps that are compatible with any device running Windows 10. Given that the OS was developed with the intent of bringing the Windows ecosystem together, platform-agnostic software is very important.

Microsoft plans to release Project Centennial to developers, but based on the entries found on the Windows Store, the firm seems to be running some related tests. These apps have been added to the storefront, but are not currently available to download — a release coinciding with the Windows 10 Anniversary Update seems probable.

Universal apps are only more important now that Intel seems to be killing off the Atom line of low-cost, low-power chips. Unlike traditional Win32 desktop software, universal apps can run on hardware using ARM-based processors as well as those built around components made by Intel, as reported by Liliputing.

If Microsoft is already using Project Centennial to produce apps for public consumption, the tool could be a real boon for developers when its release version is ready to go. The company also offers tools to help teams looking to convert Web and iOS apps to the Universal Windows Platform, although a similar utility for Android software was axed earlier this year.

While there’s no firm release date for tools based on Project Centennial, Microsoft has released a preview version. Insider program subscribers running the most recent build of Windows 10 can download the Desktop App Converter here.

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