The proliferation of rich interactive web applications across the cloud and mobile devices continues to create new opportunities for creative design and development. As these technologies evolve, Microsoft is committed to providing best-in-class tools for building modern applications. In support of these industry trends Microsoft is consolidating our lead design and development offerings — Expression and Visual Studio — to offer all of our customers a unified solution that brings together the best of Web and modern development patterns.
With Visual Studio 2012 we introduced Blend for Visual Studio, providing advanced design-centric capabilities for Windows Store apps and Windows Phone apps. You can download Blend for Visual Studio 2012 with Visual Studio Express for Windows 8, Visual Studio Express for Windows Phone 8, and Visual Studio Professional and higher.
Additionally a Preview version of Blend for Visual Studio 2012 that supports Silverlight and WPF editing, as well as SketchFlow is available. With this addition, developers can now leverage a consolidated tool for all the platforms, as part of a fully integrated solution with Visual Studio.
We are committed to releasing a production-ready version of Blend that supports these platforms in the upcoming Visual Studio 2012 Update 2. Please check back on the availability by visiting the Visual Studio website.
The web is now about applications as well as traditional web sites, and this requires a new set of tools. Microsoft is committed to offering a unified approach to focus on web design and development features in Microsoft Visual Studio 2012.
Expression Web is now available as a free download from the Microsoft Download Center, and no new versions will be developed. Customers who previously purchased Expression Web will receive support through the established support lifecycle.
Expression SuperPreview Remote Beta will continue running as a service through June 30, 2013.
Customers are demanding better tools to help them create innovative, user-centric, fast and fluid applications. Going forward, our focus is on building the best tools for creating these applications with Visual Studio and Blend for Visual Studio, importing content from a range of widely used graphical tools.
Expression Design is now available as a free download from the Microsoft Download Center, and no new versions will be developed. Customers who previously purchased Expression Design as part of Expression Ultimate or Expression Web will receive support through the established support lifecycle.
Going forward, Microsoft is continuing to invest in encoding, format conversion, and live on-demand streaming as a part of Windows Azure Media Services.
Expression Encoder 4 Pro is no longer available for purchase. It will be supported for the remainder of its support lifecycle and no new versions will be developed.
Additionally, the free version of Expression Encoder will continue to be available for download.
What’s the difference between the free and paid versions of Expression Web and Design?
The features and functionality are the same between the free download and paid versions. The key difference is that the free versions are not supported, meaning they come as-is and no Microsoft technical support is available (these products are supported via the community).
How do I get technical support for Expression products?
If you purchased Expression Studio Ultimate, Expression Web Professional or Expression Encoder Pro: you’re eligible for the same support as today via assisted support, self-support, and the community. Support is available on the Expression support webpage.
If you did not purchase Expression Web or Design and are using a free version: these products are supported via the community.
I recently purchased Expression Studio 4 Ultimate or Expression Studio 4 Web Professional and would like a refund.
I have Expression Studio 4 Ultimate and/or Web Professional through a MSDN, MPN, BizSpark, WebsiteSpark, or DreamSpark subscription. Will the supported versions of the software be available to me?
You will continue to have access to the same software and support for Expression.