Resources for my “What’s New in Mango” talk

Thanks to all who came out to last week’s Atlanta .NET user group meeting. Although we were moved a week back due to Halloween, I'll pretend it was some kind of super Daylight Saving time adjustment instead. (grin>. In any case, here are resources for the talk I did on new developer features in Windows Phone Mango. The slide deck is below, followed by links to more information. Enjoy!

Fast Application Switching – make sure you are coding the proper behavior into your apps so they don’t do a full restore from session state if it had only been suspended and not tombstoned – you’ll get much better performance. Here’s a quick lab on how to do it.

Speaking of suspended applications, I showed that now on Mango you can write some code to run periodically in the form of a background agent. Just remember that it’s not really your main app running in the background, but just a small bit of code that does some particular task when the OS wakes the agent, either every 30 minutes or so, or when the phone is on external power and WiFi. Read the overview of Background Agents to get started. If you want to download/upload files there’s an easy, monitorable way to do that with background file transfers. And you can notify users with toast as well as alarms/reminders. Lastly there is the ability to not only play background music while your app is not running, but give users track/artist information and the ability to skip forward and backwards in a playlist via Background Audio.

I also showed the basics of updating your application’s tiles. Live Tiles, and the ability to have multiple tiles on the user’s start screen, each representing specific information to the user and each being an entry point for a deep link into your application, is one of the fundamental principles of a compelling Windows Phone application. Don’t take my word for it, Live Tiles are so compelling that we built a 6 story Windows Phone in NYC to show them off. Get started on working with Live Tiles from your application with this MSDN article.

The last thing I showed was Silverlight and XNA integration. At first blush it’s easy to dismiss the significance of this capability. But ask anyone who’s ever tried to implement even the simplest menu or options screen in their XNA game, or who wanted to incorporate 3D model viewing in their Silverlight app, and you’ll see what I mean. Here’s a good walkthrough of the integration points, and here’s a video of the British Airways sample I showed illustrating the use of 3D models in a Silverlight application, complete with the Application Bar on top of the mode.

So enjoy these refreshing Mango features and let me know if you’ve published apps to the marketplace that take advantage of them!

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