Windows Phone 7 “Mango”: what’s coming for app developers

Last week at MIX11 we announced the next update coming to Windows Phone 7. Joe Belfiore, overseeing Windows Phone Program Management came on stage to address the audience eager for more on Windows Phone. While starting with an update on why some ‘Nodo’ updates are taking longer than expected, Joe then switched to bringing us the new stuff.
As a developer, you can start getting up to date with the latest capabilities by watching or downloading the sessions covering the new APIs and capabilities given during MIX11.


The main announcements

  • Internet Explorer 9 coming to Windows Phone – with the same code base and features as the desktop with some minor differences specific to the phone (no Activex support for example). This brings HTML5 rendering engine to the phone. It includes hardware acceleration, although taking into account smaller GPU.
  • Multi-tasking and Live Agents: real time interactions via Live Tiles, Push Notifications, Deep Linking and Background Agents.
  • Live tile enhancements such as multiple Live tiles per app, deep linking, …
  • Silverlight 4
  • Sockets
  • Ringtone API
  • Raw camera feed access to applications
  • SQL CE: in-memory local SQL database for ease of data applications
  • Additions to developer tooling: new Location tooling, Accelerometer tooling, profiler and support for Silverlight and XNA in the same project
  • Marketplace: going from 16 to 35 countries with Marketplace for consumers, 30 to 35 countries for devevlopers selling apps
  • New languages support, including Dutch (yay!)

Our recommendations:

  1. Watch the Day 2 keynote with demos by Joe Belfiore and Scott Guthrie on the new features and developer tooling
  2. Browse through and watch the recorded Windows Phone sessions from MIX11

Customer Feedback for Windows Phone Developer through UserVoice
The WPDev UserVoice forum is now available to gather user feedback from developers around on the application platform (APIs, runtimes, and controls) using Silverlight and XNA.
Make your voice heard too:


My personal note on the keynote and new features: sitting at the keynote I heard lots of great exciting “wow… amazing…” around me. Attending the keynote in person was a fantastic experience. Developers are very excited about new possibilities the 1500+ new APIs coming with “Mango”. For myself, it’s hard to choose the absolute favorites. But if I must, I guess the new features coming to the Live tiles are a personal favorite. One of the things that I love about the use of WP7 is the start screen and what you can do with Live tiles. So having more control over them will only enhance how the start screen gets more personal and comes even more to live.
I must admit Silverlight 4 support, Live Agents, SQL CE support and such are also very welcome.

At the conference there was also a Windows Phone booth (of course Winking smile), they had a very nice apps wall with tiny icons of the thousands of apps: THANK YOU DEVELOPERS.

Oh, and Angry Birds is officially coming to Windows Phone 7. Are you concerned? I know some folks will be happy.

The new developer tools, codenamed “Mango” are coming next month in May. Get ready today!