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Windows 8: Improved Power Efficiency for Apps; Windows Store Games Spotted; Metro-style Apps Deliver HTML5 Web Contents in IE10

Windows 8’s Metro style apps has all the performance benefits of IE10 when showing HTML5 Web content. “In Metro style apps, Web content is always JIT compiled and hardware-accelerated,” mentions Microsoft’s IE team.

Many applications embed HTML to provide a richer and always up to date experience for consumers.

“Anyone writing a Metro style app for Windows 8 can easily include Web content in their app. In an HTML or XAML app, just include an <iframe> element or a WebView control to get the full benefit of IE 10 performance,” IE team explains.

“With Metro style apps, it’s easy to integrate many existing Web services seamlessly into your app. It’s also possible to build new services for your app that let you deliver dynamic HTML content without having to update your application. When you include Web content in your Metro style app, your app gets all the performance benefits of IE10 automatically without any additional or special work. JavaScript code continues to run fast with JIT compilation, and your app will automatically use GPU to accelerate HTML graphics,” the team notes.

iPad: 1st Gen, iOS 5.0.1.
Windows 8: Developer Preview, Dell Optiplex 745, 64-bit OS.
Kindle Fire v1.
Windows 8 Delivers Power Efficiency for Apps

To see a sample HTML app that demonstrates this, check out the “Building Your First Metro Style App Using Javascript” hands-on lab.

As, the day approaches for the release of Windows 8 Consumer Preview, some more information of Windows Store has surfaced, revealing that Windows Store will include both applications and games for users to download/purchase, according to the leaked list of games titles such as:

Windows Store Games Leak

“Hydro Thunder, Toy Soldiers, Reckless Racing, Angry Birds, Ilomilo, Rocket Riot, Full House Poker, Tentacles, Crash Course, Ms Splosion Man, and Wordament, Cut the rope, Beards & Beaks, geoDefense, Sudoku, Minesweeper, Zombies, Zero Gravity, Pinball FX 2, Rise Of Glory, and iBlast Moki” are included.

Also, comes with pre-loaded games such as Pinball and Solitaire.

Windows Store pricing will range from $1.49 to $999, and Microsoft will be getting 30 percent cut of paid contents at first. If an app or game reaches $25,000 in sales, the company’s share will decrease to 20 percent.

In a February 7 blog post, Sharif Farag and Ben Srour, lead program managers on the Fundamentals and User Experience teams respectively, talks about the “improved power efficiency for applications in Windows 8” discussing some of the work the company has done to “improve the power consumption of desktop apps, to enable the all-day, always-connected scenarios we’re going to see new apps written to WinRT that run on a new generation of hardware that supports new power management capabilities.”

For Windows 8, “we started off with a rule that would apply to the large majority of Metro style apps: if an app is not on screen, and the screen is not on, it should not impact your battery life,” notes the duo. Adding, they said that doesn’t mean WinRT and the user model preclude multi-tasking. There’s a new way of thinking about how and when code takes into account modern hardware capabilities, networking demands, form factors, and reliability/security/privacy.

Basically, this means that an app can be in one of three possible states:

  1. “Actively running in the foreground
  2. Suspended in the background
  3. Performing some defined background activity,” explains the authors.

Writing further they notes, the following are enabled in the background for Metro style apps in WinRT:

  • Playing music
  • Downloading a file from or uploading it to a website
  • Keeping live tiles alive with fresh content
  • Printing
  • Receiving a VoIP call
  • Receiving an instant message
  • Receiving an email
  • Sharing content (like uploading photos to Facebook)
  • Synchronizing content with a tethered device (like syncing photos)

“We engineered the new application model to deliver consistently long battery life while enabling connected experiences,” said the autors.

Windows 8: Application execution on PCs that are sleep-capable (default settings):Windows 8: Application execution on PCs that are sleep-capable (default settings)

Windows 8: Application execution on PCs that have connected standby:Windows 8: Application execution on PCs that have connected standby

Adding, “Applications that were designed for Windows 7 will continue to work as they have before with no change in behavior, and new Metro style apps can be developed to enable new connected experiences that work in a more power-efficient manner, by taking advantage of the background infrastructure that the operating system provides,” they concluded.

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