Are you an iPhone developer? Want to expand your horizons beyond the app store? Microsoft want you to check out their Windows Phone platform (and for the good health of Nokia, that would be cool to see that happen)
Well Microsoft have launched an iOS/iPhone to Windows Phone 7 mapping tool, helping devs translate apps to Windows Phone 7 API. I’m not going to pretend to understand the intricacies. If you’re interested, you can check out:
Barbaroga who develop iOS and WP7 apps praise Windows Phone developer support as well as the much faster approval process.
Concerned about the low install base? Well, 2012 might (has to for Nokia fans sake) see an explosion of WP7 sales with Nokia shifting its focus and churning out WP7 devices “in volumes”. There’ll hopefully still be Samsung, HTC, LG, Dell and co to bring in sales too. I hope Microsoft frikkin understands not to make their apps 40% more expensive than every one else’s app store. App store purchasing is ALL ABOUT SPUR OF THE MOMENT PURCHASES. Once it gets to a certain level, people stop and think whether it’s worth it. If you make it cheap enough, people will buy more readily and OFTEN (though of course, the app has to be good and not just cheap and shitty). There are some SERIOUS opportunities here for upcoming Windows Phone developers.
Here’s another developer story, in video form. Whurley says he feels there’s more freedom in Windows Phone in some ways compared to iOS. MS taking things from apple’s book they done right, but also listening to developers desires for things they wish iOS did. He says porting Enigma has been fairly straight forward, just doing tweaks. He says a lot of platforms spout the code once, distribute everywhere (words to that effect) but none deliver. He then says he prefers the Windows Phone approach that makes it easy for engineers to switch to Windows Phone with a straight forward migration path.
Importantly he seems to say that it takes longer to port to Android than Windows Phone.
Windows Phone will not please the most discerning power user that is after features. But it will delight those those want their phones to work flawlessly out of the box. Sure they can get dumbphones, and some of our commenters say that is all WP7 is. What ever the description and criteria for smartphone, what users essentially want is something reliable, easy to use, does the “app thing” may be and can do the newer expected things perhaps such as email/browsing/big touch screen experience with ease and yes, Windows Phone does this really well.