YC-Backed Parse Bets On Windows 8, Supports Back-End Development For Its Apps

Even though Microsoft has had a hell of time catching up with Google and Apple as tablet sales have eaten into PC marketshare, there is some hope. There are startups betting that the new Windows 8 OS will keep help Microsoft’s developer ecosystem relevant, if not make it stronger.

Parse, a YC-backed startup that eases back-end mobile app development, is releasing an SDK for Windows 8.

“We think Windows 8 will be an important contender and we want our existing clients to be able to build apps on Day One,” said co-founder Ilya Sukhar. “People in the Valley don’t quite realize how big the Microsoft developer ecosystem and how entrenched it is in many big enterprises.”

Developers writing in a .NET language such as C# or Visual Basic can use access all of the same Parse features that Android or iOS developers can. Alternately, they can use it even if they’re writing in JavaScript. Parse supports special .NET features like LINQ as well.

“There’s this whole pool of enterprise developers who love C# who have been chomping at the bit,” Sukhar said. “Plus the Surface tablet looks great.”

Parse, which has billed itself in the past as the “Heroku for mobile”, takes care of common back-end issues that many mobile developers face like how to handle storage, user authentication and push notifications.

Sukhar said the company has entered a “hyper-growth” phase. He said Parse doubled revenue last month and is still growing 30 percent month-over-month in terms of apps and traffic. The company is supporting about 40,000 apps and roughly the same number of developers. They’re adding a sales team to help accelerate that growth.

Parse has a freemium model, with a free basic version and then higher tiers of service that cost anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars per month.

The company is backed with $7 million funding from Ignition Partners, Google Ventures, Menlo Ventures and YC partners like Aaron Iba and Garry Tan. Sukhar said the company’s still undecided about doing a Series B round.

“We’re not talking to anyone actively. We’re holding off and trying to stay focused,” Sukhar said.