Marketplace Updates

2844.image_thumb_090eb885 Featured Mobile

Remember the Race To Market Developer Challenge? Well, today some of the winners got announced over at The Windows Mobile Developer Blog.

  • The winner for most downloaded app is Meon Lite from Manbolo.
  • The winner for highest value generated is SPB Mobile Shell from SPB Software.

What happened to the promised list of winners on http://mobilethisdeveloper.com, we don’t know. It still shows the Challenge here, no list. Whilst writing this post, the website changed and now depicts the winners mentioned above.

Whilst Marketplace has only been available for four months, it already features more than 1245 applications from more than 1325 registered ISVs.

The Marketplace service itself will receive several important updates to enhance the experience for both customers and developers. The following will be rolled out over the next few days:

Customer experience improvements

  • World View: A new World View feature will allow Marketplace users to browse and purchase applications from a different geographical catalog. For example, a customer here in Barcelona could choose to browse the English US catalog, or a customer in Canada could browse the catalog from Japan.
  • Installation onto storage cards: Customers are downloading a lot of apps, sometimes more than the memory available on the phone. Now you can also install applications downloaded from Marketplace onto storage card memory.
  • Better application discovery. New smart search function that enables users to search for apps or games that include any of the terms included to describe the apps, and an additional viewing option called the Themed Showcase that organizes applications by genre, interest, seasonality, theme or even an ISV specific view.
  • New store opening. Opening Marketplace for commerce in Russia, enabling Windows phone users in one or the fastest growing Windows Phone markets to buy apps, and developers and ISVs based in Russia to submit them.

Developer experience improvements

  • Free app submissions to additional markets: ISVs will no longer have to pay a $10 fee for submitting applications to additional markets. Once an application has been certified for a primary market as part of the existing $99 submission fee, ISVs can now submit for free that same application to as many other catalogs as they want, as long as they meet the current Market Validation guidelines.
  • Applications policy changes: Now allowing VoIP applications that use a carrier network, unless explicitly prohibited by a mobile operator.
  • Improved registration, submission and management process.

Also being made available this week is the Windows Mobile 6.5.3 Developer Toolkit (DTK) which includes support for a new generation of Windows Mobile 6.5 phones that include capacitive touch screens. For a quick summary of the differences between the SDK and the DTK, check out this blog. The DTK comes packed with some pretty cool new features you can add to your application like a Bing Map Control, Widget VS Integration, Bubble Tiles, Auto Dialog Layout, and more.