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Silicon Benders is a company that specializes in creative software on the Windows Platform. They’re also one of the first companies to have deployed a native 64-bit Windows on Snapdragon app on the Windows App Store. Run by brothers Miles and Ryan Harris, Silicon Benders’ Sketchable Plus is a painting and drawing app for artists, architects, and designers. We recently caught up with Miles to learn about the advantages of porting their software to Windows on Snapdragon.
When Miles and Ryan were first approached by the Microsoft Surface team to port their app to Windows on Snapdragon, they immediately jumped at the opportunity. Aside from the chance to work with a household name, they saw the value of the underlying technologies of Windows on Snapdragon as the future of computing. With features like instant-on and all-day battery life, the duo recognized these capabilities could transform Sketchable Plus into a digital portable drawing studio, a tool ready to go, whenever and wherever creativity strikes.
Miles describes the end-user experience as touch-first, pen-first and one where users are no longer waiting on long loading times. He says these aspects align with the needs of modern artists who are keenly aware of the hardware they are using. This segment is looking for lightweight yet robust digital painting software solutions with thoughtful pen and touch-first interactions, backed by all-day battery life. He receives a lot of feedback from users who say they chose Sketchable Plus because of its native support on the hardware they’re equipped with.
Development and Porting
The original Sketchable app was built in Universal Windows Platform (UWP) and had few dependencies. Miles says the porting process was as straight forward as selecting the build target and rebuilding the code. He echo’s similar remarks for Sketchable Plus, which was built using the Windows App SDK and its WinUI 3 component. This allowed for platform integration while taking advantage of the latest features of Windows on Snapdragon – including GPU-accelerated image processing and DirectX to power its painting and drawing engine.
The app achieves low-latency drawing and animation framerates of 120 FPS which translates into more realistic and natural drawing experiences. Going forward, Miles says they’re experimenting with the platform’s AI capabilities.
Silicon Benders relies on the Windows Dev Kit 2023 powered by our Snapdragon Platform as their development platform, and they encourage other developers to try it out. He describes it as a first-class development environment because it has the latest Snapdragon processor, runs a native version of developers’ much-loved Visual Studio IDE, and allows for local debugging which speeds up the development process. More generally, he says that Windows users want software that’s designed for today’s diverse Windows hardware offerings. Giving them a native Windows on Snapdragon package helps differentiate apps in an ever-crowded app store.
Port your Windows on Snapdragon app Today!
We’re excited and proud to play a part in bringing Windows experiences to new devices powered by Snapdragon. The Windows Dev Kit 2023 is powered by our Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3 Compute Platform that provides a rich feature set for Windows developers including:
- Potential multi-day battery life for long user runtimes.
- Power-efficient Qualcomm Kryo CPU with the option to dynamically balance power and performance.
- Qualcomm Adreno GPU to drive powerful graphics with DirectX and OpenGL.
- Qualcomm Hexagon DSP for dedicated hardware-accelerated AI.
- 5G and WiFi6 connectivity.
As users discover the benefits of Windows on Snapdragon, the list of Windows mobile compute devices powered by Snapdragon platforms continue to grow. And as more developers discover the ease of porting their apps, the number of apps available in the Windows App Store is also increasing.
Ready to build or port your Windows app and experience the future of computing? Check out Windows on Snapdragon on Qualcomm Developer Network.
Snapdragon and Qualcomm branded products are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.
Battery life varies significantly based on device, usage, settings, and other factors.