What is .NET Scope in Future

What is the scope of .NET in the future? Or what is the future of .NET?

I have stumbled upon this question several times in the last few days.

Well, let me start by asking this. What do you mean by future? Do you mean the next 5 years? Next 10 years or 100 years?

I can't predict what will happen in the next 100 years but I can be sure that the future of .NET for the next 5 years is very bright. I think the future of .NET for the next 10 years is also very bright.


See, over a period of time, software evolves. I remember when Microsoft announced its C# language in 1999 and couple of years later, .NET was introduced. After 12 years, here we are. .NET and C# is still here. It may have evolved a lot since then. Some noticeable trends are the disappearance of VB.NET, Windows Forms and Silverlight and the appearance of HTML 5, CSS3, JavaScript and Windows Store Apps.

If you look today, Microsoft is focusing on .NET 4.5 with Visual Studio 2012. Visual Studio 2012 perhaps is one of the best products to build Windows and Web software applications.

Silverlight is dead. Windows Forms is becoming legacy.

Look at Silverlight today? Silverlight is dead. Microsoft even closed the Silverlight.net website. For Windows development, more clients are adapting WPF over Windows Forms. I also don't see too many new improvements happening in Widows Forms from Microsoft. I think both Windows Forms and WPF have matured enough and Microsoft doesn't seem to be adding anything new. 

Where are ASP.NET and WPF today? Well, WPF is still in high demand and ASP.NET has MVC and Web API as future products but traditional ASP.NET is being replaced with faster, lighter and rejuvenated HTML 5, JavaScript, and JQuery. I am not sure what the future holds for Windows Forms, WPF and ASP.NET but there is plenty more to do with .NET.

Let's take a look at what Microsoft is promoting? The current track of Microsoft development has three major verticals for certifications; they are:

  • Windows Store Apps
  • Web Applications
  • ALM


And you can build applications in all three disciplines using C#, .NET 4.5 and Visual Studio 2012.

"A programmer must adopt and adapt."

- Mahesh Chand, Founder C# Corner

Even after several years later, .NET may evolve in something else but as a software developer, you will have to evolve too.

I remember I started my career with VB3 and later moved to VC++, MFC, and ATL, COM and then C# and .NET and so on. And here I am today. .NET is still going strong.


Microsoft has spent a lot in two languages - C# and XAML. You can say the future of Microsoft depends on these two languages. No matter if you develop a Windows Phone app, Windows 8 app, ASP.NET web application, a service, or Windows thick clients, you can use these two languages. So learning C# and XAML is always a good idea and promise you a bright future.

C# and XAML have a bright future.


Either you build large enterprise applications or mobile applications, Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) has become an industry standard to build distributed applications. WCF is also a part of .NET. Check out some following good basic readings on WCF here.  


UPDATE June 17, 2016

In .NET world, things have changed a lot since this article was written. UWP is new way to build Windows 10 applications. Web API is the way to build Web services. ASP.NET MVC is being a defacto of development Web development using ASP.NET. Now .NET is open source and new .NET is called .NET Core. ASP.NET Core is new open source version of ASP.NET. Xamarin is a part of Microsoft now that will allows .NET and C# developers and build open source iOS and Android apps.

All these new changes are captured in these following two articles that I highly recommend reading:

UPDATE Dec 11, 2017

.NET Core is the next evolution of .NET and the future. Microsoft just released .NET Core 2.0. 

Read this article: Get started with .NET Core 2.0

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