After refusing to create apps for Windows 10 Mobile, Google could be finally working on a new media app for Windows 10 that would be based on Microsoft’s UWP principles.
While Google has never shown interest in bringing most of its apps to the Microsoft Store (also known as Windows Store), a private Microsoft Store listing suggests that a new YouTube app for Windows 10 is in pipeline.
This new YouTube app appears to be in the works for several months now and it will be the first time that a native YouTube client will make it to the Microsoft Store for PCs.
Many people who watch YouTube in Windows are currently using a web browser or third-party apps, and the user experience is usually good, but the UWP version could unlock multiple new capabilities.
It appears Google has quietly published a new package of its existing Xbox YouTube app with support for Windows 10.
The new beta app version 18.104.22.168, which is currently hidden, was available for Xbox consoles only, but a new update for the app introduces support for desktop too, thanks to the UWP platform.
It’s also worth noting that this is not a Progressive Web App. It’s a proper UWP app based on principles outlined by Microsoft, but it currently comes with Xbox UI, which is strange.
By bringing YouTube to the Microsoft Store, Google could significantly improve the YouTube experience on Windows 10. For instance, a UWP app will finally allow users to easily stream the service in high dynamic range (HDR), which is a feature that offers better contrast and colour on support hardware.
Likewise, UWP apps also have access to a wide range of APIs for seamless integration with Windows 10 features, such as Action Center, Jump List, Share UI, and more.
The unexpected embracing of Windows 10’s universal problem could also mean that Google could well be looking to bring its other apps to the Microsoft Store as well.
This move comes after Microsoft and Google collaborated for the Android-powered Surface Duo, which comes pre-installed with all Google apps.
Unfortunately, it is not yet clear when and if Google will publish the app for all Windows 10 users. For now, the app appears to be working partially on the desktop without mouse support and it doesn’t work on Windows 10 Mobile when sideloaded.
Regardless, a YouTube app for Windows 10 is great news for the app store as Microsoft is currently betting big on Project Reunion to close the divide between UWP and Win32 desktop apps.
What do you think about this unexpected move? Let us know in the comments below.