Migrating HTML5-based applications to Windows Phone overnight with Apache Cordova and jQuery Mobile

Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc., the Apache Cordova team and the JQueryMobile team recently met with over 20 top PhoneGap/Apache Cordova developers for a Hackathon in San Francisco to gather feedback on building HTML5 applications running on Windows Phone with Apache Cordova and the jQuery Mobile theme for Windows Phone (Metro style). The Windows Phone team also joined the party, asking developers about their HTML5 and Javascript experiences on top of the Windows Phone Web Browser control.

While some of the developers had backgrounds in start-ups and others were independent developers, every attendee had one thing in common: all of them had PhoneGap/Cordova applications published on Android and/or iPhone platforms. During the event, using Apache Cordova and jQuery Mobile, we helped attendees migrate their HTML5-based applications to Windows Phone. For many of the attendees, this was their first time to work with Windows Phone. The energy at the event was amazing as developers got to experience first-hand the ease of integrating Apache Cordova and jQuery Mobile with Windows Phone.

You can read the report on the event from Jesse and Steve from the Apache Cordova team here.

After a few hours of learning Visual Studio Express for Phone, coding and eating pizza, the first demos of HTML5 applications running on Windows Phone started to pop up. Developers saw their applications running on their new Windows Phone devices, which they received as part of the event along with AppHub tokens for them to publish applications on the Windows Phone marketplace.

Developers from Learnzapp, with no previous experience on Windows Phone development, migrated their Cordova/JQuery Mobile Law School Admission Test application to Windows Phone and applied the jQuery Mobile theme for Windows Phone (Metro style) to their HTML5 controls in only a few hours. Those developers plan to submit the application to the Windows Phone marketplace in the next few days. You can read their own report on the event on their blog. Below is a screenshot of the LSAT application running on an Android device, a Windows Phone and an iPhone.


Developers from Tiggzi, delivering a cloud based Builder for HTML5, jQuery Mobile and Apache Cordova applications, kicked off the addition of Windows Phone to the list of platforms their tool targets. They announced the added support for Windows Phone earlier this month, only 3 weeks after the event.

The event was a success not only because developers left the Hackathon with functional HTML5-based Windows Phone applications, after migrating their applications in a single night, but also because experienced developers helped us identify the key aspects of the migration process which will enable making the HTML5 and Javascript development for Windows Phone even better.

We want to thank everyone who attended the event, and look forward to further engagement with this community. Be sure to take a look at the video below to see a short demo of an HTML5 application development with Apache Cordova, jQuery Mobile and the new jQuery Mobile theme for Windows Phone (Metro style).

To learn more about HTML5 and JavaScript development for Windows Phone, visit this page where you will find related resource, articles and tutorials.

Abu Obeida Bakhach
Program Manager
Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.
A subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation

Comments (4)

  1. Ashley says:

    Hey, we've already tried using PhoneGap to port HTML5 games to WP7 and found the performance is simply not good enough:


    Any plans to improve HTML5 performance for WP7?

  2. Chris says:

    Abu, I have recently published the Open Charge Map web app to the WP7 marketplace. It doesn't yet use a Metro theme but it does share the same HTML5/jQuery Mobile between iOS, Android, WP7 and desktop browsers – which is a great benefit. On WP7.5 (an HTC HD7 for example) the performance is diabolical, which is seems to be related to the silverlight web viewer control used by the PhoneGap starter kit – is there any work ongoing to optimize this?

    Feel free to use this app as a benchmark, perhaps I'm missing something!

  3. Abu Obeida says:

    @Ashley, interesting report. Would you like to get in touch in order to explore the differences  you’ve measured? Please email me at the link below.

    @Chris, this is great you published your application on the Windows Phone marketplace. We would love to get in touch with you to see where you are hitting performance issues and see how we can improve things. Please contact me at the link below.


  4. Android app builder says:

    Fantastic blog!! its really very interesting.great news.Thanks for sharing!!

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