Microsoft has made a number of Windows Phone beta tools available to developers after confirmation that the first device with Mango pre-loaded will be launched in Japan in September.
Developers are now able to download Windows Phone SDK 7.1 Beta 2 Refresh, which aims to provide everything needed to update apps so that they ready to run on Mango.
The Beta 2 Refresh contains a number of improvements designed to assist developers, and Microsoft will continue to refine the tools over the coming months, explained Cliff Simpkins, product manager for Windows Phone at Microsoft.
"Application platform APIs are now locked; you can feel confident to start getting ready for submitting your apps next month," Simpkins said in the Windows Phone developer blog.
"Emulator now has a nifty screenshot capability built in, allowing you to quickly snap quality images of your app without the need for separate tools or cropping time. The images are great for use in the app submission process or to share on your blog or with folks such as my team."
Developers who updated to Mango over the past month will get a notification on their phone stating that they can upgrade to Windows SDK7.1 Build 7712.
However, Simpkins emphasised that this is still a pre-release build and that developers need to protect their backups to gain access to subsequent updates.
"There's a lot of goodness in this update that you should appreciate as a developer and as an end-user. As with the Mango OS Beta 2 pre-release, it only includes the Microsoft portion of the Mango update and carries all of the same caveats about beta software," he added.
Earlier this week, Terry Myerson, corporate vice president of Windows Phone Engineering, announced that Mango has officially been made available to handset manufacturers.
"This marks the point in the development process where we hand code to our handset and mobile operator partners to optimise Mango for their specific phone and network configurations," he said on the Windows Phone Blog.
"Here on the Windows Phone team, we now turn to preparing for the update process. The Mango update for current Windows Phone handsets will be ready this fall, and of course will come pre-installed on new Windows Phones.
It appears that Japanese users will be the first to get their hands on a Mango device. Network operator KDDI has announced that it will release a waterproof and dust-proof Windows 7.5 phone from Fujitsu Toshiba in September.
The Windows Phone IS12T has been confirmed to feature a 13.2-megapixel camera and 32GB of internal memory.
European release dates are yet to be revealed, but manufacturers including HTC, Nokia and Samsung are expected to make Mango devices available around this time.
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