This raises an interesting question for developers using Compose for Desktop: do you stick with Compose for Desktop for your Windows apps? Or do you just “double down” on the Android app and use it for Windows 11 as well?
If your objective is just to get to Windows 11 users, then perhaps you could skip Compose for Desktop. Despite all the gains with Compose for Desktop and Kotlin/Multiplatform, it is still likely to be less work to just maintain an Android app.
However, Compose for Desktop also gets you:
- Windows 10 and lower
While a lot of people will upgrade to Windows 11 in time, that will depend a lot on who qualifies for the upgrade
. Many who qualify may postpone the upgrade, due to concerns about problems or just a lack of time/willingness to fuss with the process. So, Windows 10 and lower will be a large audience for a while, in addition to the macOS users and Linux fans (👋) out there.
…the Windows 11 thing still won’t let you access native OS functionality (eg. you can’t access files on the filesystem, don’t have access to system tray, file type associations, etc). You are pretty limited in what you can do if you can’t access any of the system APIs. Compose for Desktop solves this problem by giving you full access just like any other native application, instead of being constrained to the APIs of a virtualized environment.
Right now, details are “thin on the ground”, but Jim’s point almost certainly will be true to some extent. In the very near term, that needs to be counterbalanced with Compose for Desktop’s current limitations, of course.
So, I do not view the Android-on-Windows-11 announcement as weakening the Compose for Desktop argument. What it will do is make it easier to start having the conversation around supporting desktops, and that gives you the opportunity to point to Compose for Desktop as an option.