Silverlight and Mix

Last week Microsoft hosted the second edition of Mix, the event for the web and graphic design community. Last year I believe Microsoft launched the Expression portfolio of tools at the event. This year the big news for me is Silverlight. Microsoft announced the next version of Silverlight, which seems to getting quite some good traction, the next version of Expression tools, and more interestingly, Silverlight Mobile.

Silverlight is meant to be a mass-market cross-platform rich-media technology. It received a huge endorsement from Nokia as the company announced their SYmbian smartphones will support Silverlight Mobile. Microsoft then announced Silverlight for WIndows Mobile. This is all very intresting because surprisingly, Flash Lite has not been very popular so far. I have only seen very few apps built on Flash. The announcement will give Silverlight an increadible head start in mobile devices, shipping in tens of millions of phones per year.

From a technology perspecive, Silverlight provides Flash-like multimedia capabilities with a few technological advantages like enhanced codecs, much better zoom and other small features. The key difference is that you can build SIlverlight applications with .net capabilites. Thismeans the programmability of Silverlight applications is incredible, giving them the bility to connect to full-blown applications, data sources, etc,; and that millions of .net developers can now develop SilverLight applications.

In short, mobile applications are about to get better. Much better. Nicer-looking, too.

Comments (2)
  1. Kevin Daly says:

    It’s a shame we’ll have another year to wait for Silverlight 2.0 on mobile devices, because we really need that not only for the managed code but also for the layout controls – that’s even more valuable in the mobile arena than on the desktop.

    I hope that when Silverlight 2.0 *does* get implemented for mobile there’ll be a browserless option, because it’s currently our best hope for overcoming the limitations of Windows Mobile UI developed with managed code (in other words I want to be able to write stand-alone managed Windows Mobile apps that aren’t saddled with a VB4-style UI).

    It’s a worry though that there’ll be such a delay before anything like this becomes available to developers – as horrible as Objective-C is (and let’s be honest, it has *issues*), the iPhone SDK is going to have a significant head start.

    It’ll be interesting to see what can be done to retain developer mindshare.

  2. James says:

    Expecting Silverlight Mobile Beta 1 at Mix 2009!!

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