Microsoft is updating its Windows mobile app store in preparation for the final release of its Windows Phone 7 software.
In a blog post, group product planner for Microsoft's Mobile and Embedded Devices division, Todd Brix, detailed changes to the Windows Phone Marketplace designed to improve the developer experience.
According to Brix, the Windows Phone Developer Tools have been downloaded more than 500,000 times, generating a large, wide range of interesting applications.
“The central theme to all of our developer work is really creativity – getting people from 'what if' to 'wow' as quickly as possible – the results are everywhere,” he said.
“We see apps and games in meetings and on the web everyday that do things with our application platform that we hadn’t even considered. Now it’s time for [these developers] to bring those ideas to market and make a little money. That’s where Windows Phone Marketplace comes in.”
To help developers better monetise their applications Microsoft has updated Marketplace to make it easier to distribute software while preserving IP rights and ensuring customers have a good experience.
“In fact, many of the biggest changes to Marketplace for Windows Phone 7 are features and streamlined processes to help developers get their apps to market faster,” Brix explained.
“For example, next week developers will see a brand new developer portal that makes it even easier for them to distribute and manage their apps and games.”
Brix said this meant that developers would be free to focus on the creative side of development, but added this caveat: “We’re starting something new here and we want to give developers a great experience, even if we have to iron out a few kinks behind the scenes along the way. We’ll do this by taking a phased approach.”
This could mean that applications are released at a relatively slow pace, but according to the firm this will ensure their pedigree and their quality. To this end, the firm will initially only accept submissions from registered developers whose apps are already finished.
Microsoft expects to open its store to developers in November.
Windows Phone 7 will launch on 11 October.
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