Apple computers use macOS, while the company's smartphones and tablets use iOS. But you may soon be able to run the same versions of some apps on a Mac, iPad, or iPhone.
Last year, Apple announced that it was undertaking a multi-year project allowing you to run iOS applications on a Mac. Now, Bloomberg has published an article with a tentative roadmap.
This summer, Apple could release an SDK allowing developers to easily transfer iPad applications to Mac OS. Next year, the company will allow developers to do the same with iPhone applications. And by 2021, developers may not have anything to wear. They will be able to create a single application that can be used on all three platforms.
This calendar is not fixed in the moment, things could change. Again, this has not been officially confirmed by Apple, so it could be totally wrong.
But there could be important results for developers and end users.
Developers would be able to create a single application and make it available for phones, tablets, laptops and desktops without the need to develop custom versions for different platforms. And this could encourage iOS developers to offer applications for Mac, increasing the amount of software available for both operating systems.
For users, this could open the door to a single payment feature, assuming Apple purchases are tied to purchases made in Mac and iOS app stores.
Apple would hardly be the first company to pursue a platform of universal applications. Microsoft has tried … but since the company eliminated Windows Phone, the "Universal Windows Platform" actually refers to desktops, laptops and tablets (as well as Xbox One, to some extent).
Meanwhile, Google has blurred the boundaries between Android and Chrome OS in recent years by adding support for the Google Play Store and Android apps to Chromebooks.