app development

We were kindly invited to Microsoft’s campus in Reading, UK last Monday where we were able to sit down with folk from the Developer and Platform Evangelist (DPE) team to see exactly what the company is doing to bring content to the Windows and Windows Phone platforms, as well as how we can work with said personnel to cover highlighted content you may have not been aware existed.

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The majority of the crew here at Windows Phone Central digs photography. Between our DSLRs and smartphones we’re all about wrangling photons. And we’re not alone, a lot of you are into photography too. If you count yourself among the photography loving crowd you should sign up to join the beta of Project Tripod, an exclusive app coming to Windows Phone first.

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According to Business Insider, Microsoft is interested in buying Appcelerator (www.appcelerator.com). Appcelerator is a mobile app cloud company that powers some 50,208 applications installed on over 111 million devices, which is roughly 10 percent of the world’s smartphone apps.

Appcelerator’s development product, Titanium, provides an impressive amount of tools for developers to create and manage mobile apps operating systems including iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, and HTML5. Compaies like eBay, PayPal and Wall Street Journal are just a few examples of who’s already on board with the program.

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Microsoft today has announced the replacement for the App Hub dev portal. It's said to have been months in the making and having the underpinnings of a more robust and scalable backend the site is available to use now.

Among new feature highlights, the new website includes support of PayPal to pay for your developer account as well as be paid from the Marketplace. You are also now able to choose unique prices for each region as well as conduct far bigger beta tests encompassing thousands of testers if needed.

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It wasn't long ago that Verious Inc., a leader in connecting developers with components and services for mobile app development, partnered with Microsoft to add Windows Phone development to their catalog. Verious already had a strong presence in the iOS and Android development community and the addition of the Windows Phone platform was seen as a plus. Verious is able to provide hundreds of pre-built mobile app components, open source projects, SDKs, and other tools to Windows Phone developers.

Today, Verious has announced a new partnership with Deutsche Telekom which enables Deutsche Telekom to launch the Developer Garden Component Marketplace for developers across Europe. This partnership will add significantly to the number of developer tools available for mobile application development. Deutsche Telekom previously announced plans to develop and promote tools that will help developers using Microsoft Visual Studio to mash up Deutsche Telekom's world-class network services with applications built for Microsoft Corp.'s device and cloud technology platforms. The partnership between Verious and Deutsche Telekom, coupled with the Deutsche Telekom partnership with Microsoft is expected to boost Windows Phone development significantly...

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We've got time for one more reminder on the June 22, 2012 St. Louis Windows Phone Development Workshop. Nokia Developer Ambassador Rich Dunbar will be leading the workshop. If you're in the St. Louis area or happened to be visiting the area, this sounds like a great opportunity to network with other developers and get some help building your app.

The workshop will run from 5:30 p.m. until around 9:00 p.m. and will be held at the Microsoft Offices in St. Louis.

The goal of the workshop is to help developers get started on their first Windows Phone app. Nokia will be sponsoring the event and will provide pizza and beverages.  We will be providing a few WPCentral Store gift certificates to give away and we're still crossing our fingers that Nokia will have a few door prizes to give away as well.  

Attendees will need to bring their own laptop and have the necessary development tools installed. You can find a full list of the tools that you'll need here in the Windows Phone Central Forums discussion. Registration is required (so enough pizza is ordered) for the workshop and you can find that easy process here at GroupSpaces.

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Is Windows Phone a  "potential competitive threat" to Android?

We all know that there is a great war going on right now in the smartphone world. Apple and iOS continue to be taking most parts of the world by storm, where as in North America RIM's numbers have plummeted over the last year or two. So where does that leave Windows Phone?

Well it would seem that for most people it is apps that are important and that is where Flurry comes in, where we found this interesting report. Flurry is an analytic company that tracks developer support across all the major smartphone operating systems. The statistics are easy for Flurry to trace as when a company creates a new project in Flurry Analytics it will need to download specific SDKs.

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Develop a Windows Phone app in 30 days

Do you have an idea for a great Windows Phone app but have no idea where to start? Microsoft may have just the help you need to get started in the right direction.

Generation App is a Microsoft partnering program that will walk you through the process of developing a Windows Phone app. "How to develop a Windows Phone app in 30 Days" ("30toLaunch" for short) breaks everything down over four weeks and provides all the resources and support you need to build an app. In many ways, Generation App is a one stop source for all your developing needs

The thirty day schedule covers design principles, creating the interface, designing a splash screen, understanding the various Silverlight aspects, adding ads to your app and every other possible factor involved in app development. Each week has a videos to help you get through things and links to the necessary tools and resources.

Generation App's tag line is "Start with an idea. Code that idea. Then market it to the masses". The "30toLaunch" website wraps everything you need up in a nice, single source package.

Source: Generation App

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Verious Inc is a leader in connecting developers with components and services for mobile app developer and they have a strong presence with iOS and Android development. Today the company has added Windows Phone development to their lineup giving developers even more tools at their disposal.

What's this mean? Hundreds of pre-built mobile app components, open source projects, HTML5 components and SDKs are now available to Windows Phone developers. It opens up the pool of resources developers have to tap into.  Verious has reportedly worked closely with Microsoft to identify the most valuable components to help accelerate mobile app development.

As described by Anil Pereira, founder and CEO of Verious,

"From Metro-styled icons to charting controls and mapping tools, we’ve worked with Microsoft to compile the world’s most comprehensive catalogue of pre-built components, open source libraries and SDKs for Windows Phone development. Now mobile app developers can leverage these resources to get their apps to market faster—just as they do for other leading smartphone platforms.”

Seeing that Verious already has a presence with iOS and Android development, the addition of Windows Phone to Verious's catalog may see more cross platform apps hit the Marketplace.

You can catch the full press release after the break and find out more on Verious here at their website.

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In partnership with both Nokia and Microsoft, Aalto University in Finland will use an €18 million (a tad over $28 million U.S.) investment kitty set up by the two companies to launch an app development program. The program, named "AppCampus", will act as an umbrella for the development of innovative apps to take place for Windows Phone, Symbian and Series 40.

AppCampus will attempt to attract students, developers and entrepreneurs to the Windows Phone platform and help boost the quality of apps found on the Marketplace. While it's pleasant to see Symbian and Series 40 still receiving some attention from Nokia (as well as Microsoft with this investment), it'll be exciting to see how the program will affect the situation with Microsoft's mobile platform.

"Within the AppCampus program, mobile entrepreneurs can benefit from comprehensive support, training in mobile technology, design and usability, and funding to create innovative new mobile apps and services. Windows Phone Marketplace and Nokia Store offer local and global business opportunities to program participants via distribution to consumers around the world. Mentored by veterans in the mobile industry, program participants will be given insights and business coaching to help them commercialize their ideas while retaining the full intellectual property rights for their innovations."

With Windows 8 just around the corner, along with the "three screens" dream for Microsoft and Nokia's apparent tablet plans, we wouldn't be surprised to see development for Metro apps outside of the 480x800 resolution. Exciting times for developers and consumers, nonetheless. Check out the press release after the break.

Source: AppCampus, via: Gizmodo

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Telerik, the company behind the RadControls developer tools and the Windows Phone Task app, have just published a whitepaper that will aid any developer who has recently submitted their Windows Phone app to the Marketplace. The free document runs through how to effectively present your application with a well designed landing page, upload YouTube videos (with some SEO tips), monitor the analytics, as well as covering some in-app tricks.

The 13 page whitepaper will help provide developers (who have no marketing experience) the knowledge to kick off promotion campaigns on the web that will drive in traffic, while optimising the app to reach full potential. Head on over to Telerik (source below) to check out the free resource.

Source: Telerik

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Bee Mobile is offering a powerful Windows Phone 7 DevKit that allows developers to create an on-line web-service driven product catalog application fast and easily. Bee Mobile Metropolis was used to create the above demoed sample project, Shopping Mall, and could be used to create apps with potential use such as:

  • On-line web store showing the products catalogue
  • Restaurant presenting the food it offers
  • Real-estate agency promoting the properties for sale
  • Fashion-model agency presenting the photographs of models in their database.

You can download Bee Mobile Metropolis here at the Bee Mobile website.

Thanks goes out to Vladimir for sharing this with us!

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Imagine Cup is an incredible event where a number of teams battle it out with ideas that use technology to help make the world a better place. This is the first time it has been held in the US and it's a rather special one with a team from Iraq developing a Windows Phone 7 app that registers and tracks refugees in camps around the world. Being the first team from Iraq to enter the event, the trio have overcome vast challenges to be where they are today. Enji Issa Zain-Alabdin, Kosar Osman Muhammed and Choman Jalal Mustafa (who all study at The American University of Iraq – Sulaimani) are the brains behind the development.

Team Hawk (as they're known) has the goal in speeding up the process where refugees are registered to help get aid to them more efficiently. The app will securely register personnel in a database on a domain owned by the team.

"By using this technology we get rid of the old way of registration which was through paperwork. We believe that paperwork requires time, money, and many employees. And paperwork is not secure, because papers can be lost, burnt or even altered. But in our application the information is securely transferred to the database and we avoid the risk of losing information by securing the database using login credentials. By using our application, we hope governments or NGOs can help refugees and provide humanitarian aids as soon as possible."

Moved by their work thus far? Why not take a few minutes out your time to vote for them? We're not quite sure where part 2 of the interview has got to, but we'll keep an eye out. This project is one of many by a number of developers from a variety of backgrounds and countries all coming together for the good of the world. Check out all the entries here and vote for ones that you believe really make a difference. Voting closes in two days. The winning team will win the People's Choice award and receive $10,000.

Source: XImplosionX

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AppMakr Gaining Popularity

If you're interested in developing a Windows Phone App, there's a terrific online source that will allow you to build Windows Phone 7 apps using a point and click solution. We've mentioned AppMakr before and the online app building resource is gaining popularity with developers of all levels.

AppMakr will offer developers a Windows Phone Mashup Application template where you can create apps that will pull from one or more RSS/Atom based feeds. You have generic artwork or you can create your own to personalize your app.

Just checking out the comments on various Microsoft's MSDN developer blogs, Susan Todd posts,

"AppMakr is really quite easy to use. It is fast, with the most time taken on finding the content to include, making the feeds (if necessary) and doing the artwork."

Joe Healy adds,

"I think AppMakr is viable for crunch-n-munch type RSS applications. Experiment with it. Certain application styles will work well with appmakr."

Other MSDN blogs offer similar positive comments on the online development resource as well as tutorials. Personally, I've tinkered with AppMakr enough to agree that it is a very good resource for app development.  AppMakr was recommended at a recent App Garage workshop as a great starting point for those interested in getting involved with app development.

You can find out all the details over at AppMakr's website.  If you've had any experiences working with AppMakr or tips to share on building apps with AppMakr, feel free to share them in the comments.

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