Windows Phone + VB developers = Great Mobile Apps

11/29/2010 Update: Today we are announcing the final release of Visual Basic for Windows Phone Developer ToolsThis release enables you to submit your VB applications to the Windows Phone Marketplace.  Since the CTP, we’ve also added support for French, German, Italian, and Spanish


Like the CTP, the final release requires Visual Studio Professional, Premium, or Ultimate, and the Windows Phone Developer Tools.  If you don’t have Visual Studio 2010, you can install the free Visual Studio 2010 trial.  You can also find VB code samples for Windows Phone on MSDN here.

Happy coding!


Many of you have asked if Visual Basic can be used to write Windows Phone applications. 

As of today, the answer is “yes!”

Starting today, you can download Microsoft Visual Basic CTP for Windows Phone Developer Tools.  This is a great milestone as it enables our Visual Basic developers to be able to build applications for Windows Phone.

Applications built using the CTP run on both the emulator and the phone. To try the CTP, you’ll need the final version of Windows Phone Developer Tools and Visual Studio 2010 Professional or higher. If you don’t have Visual Studio 2010 Professional, you can install the free trial of Visual Studio Professional

The CTP includes Visual Studio 2010 project templates, item templates, designer support, emulator support, debugging, and IntelliSense for Visual Basic.  After installing the CTP, Visual Studio 2010 Professional and higher users will find Windows Phone project types for Visual Basic in the New Project Dialog, as you can see below.

Post your feedback and connect with others on the Windows Phone Forums, and report issues on Microsoft Connect.


Comments (35)

  1. Dominik says:

    What's so great about VB? Every time i have to read it my eyes hurt…

  2. Skytribe says:

    Get your eyes checked then mate…

  3. DL says:

    Great news, thank you!

    @Dominik: I feel the same when I have to read C#

  4. Native Developer says:

    Please, add Visual C++ for a future release…

  5. FarCry3r says:

    So does this means that VB Express users are left out? That's sucks.

  6. phuff says:

    FarCry3r, you can use the free VS2010 Pro trial to use the CTP at no cost.  There's a link in the text of the blog post.

    Polita Paulus


  7. GoldyTech says:

    Thank GOD , MS is still committed to VB

  8. Dave says:

    The only thing MS is committed to is their bottom line. They haven't released a "GOOD" development tool since Visual Studio 6.

  9. FoxProGuy says:

    Amen to not releasing a good dev tool brother ! When FoxPro for DOS was released we used to have to code @Say before there was a form builder. Microsoft has somehow managed to take coding all the way back to Early DOS programming standards now instead of writing @Say we are writing htmlhelper and developers are hailing this as a break through, give me a break. We should layout our forms and Visual Studio should generate the css, tables and divs for us. This product should be called Visual StoneAge. The sad part is it didn't take the FoxPro 8 years to get a form designer that works nor they require 2 different design patterns. The webform designer still can not render a web page correctly which is pathetic and MVC for the most part lacks one. Congratulations to the Visual Studio team for delivering such a wonderful product. What version of Visual Studio are you finally going to implement a class browser that does more then look good.

  10. Andre says:

    Instead of wasting $500 million for a WP7 campaign you should rather have added support for native code. With support for native code MS wouldn't need to steal icons from the Apple App Store.…/9917

    But the good thing today is that we can just ignore MS with its 4% market share.

    No apps, no market share. No market share, no apps. Spending an other $500 million on marketing won't fix this. Development tools will.

  11. Sam says:

    This to all the people who are stuck and frozen in history and refuse to move on: Get over it! Visual Studio 6 is history and worthless in current times. If you cannot, go build your memorials for it somewhere else. We are in 2010 and the tools that we need today cannot be understood by you if you refuse to learn and move on. Andre, the development tools for WP7 are world class and Apple has NOTHING close to this. Go and make Apple apps (if you can) and stop complaining in Microsoft blogs!

  12. Andre says:

    The dev tools may be "world class", but all Microsoft has to offer are proprietary languages and frameworks. I'm not going to rewrite the whole codebase for a smartphone with 4% marketshare. Angry Birds for Android got 1 million downloads witin the fist day while MS has to steal the Angry Birds icon from iTunes because they have no intention to rewrite it for WP7. MS is living in an ivory tower and the world outside is changing. C++/CLI would help here, but someone thought that spending $500 millions on marketing is better than support for C++ codebases. I don't mind the Silverlight UI, but I won't write any non-UI code in a proprietary language.

  13. Andre says:

    Also why is OpenGL not supported on WP7?

  14. DotNetUser says:

    @Andre – C# is a first class citizen in the .NET World. C++ is unfortunately unpopular in developing business and consumer applications in general. The fact that the Windows Phone 7 is a business and consumer device and is ideal for .NET development with Silverlight – C# comes as a natural choice. C++ is way too complicated for business-oriented developers. OpenGL? Are you kidding me?!!

    I think Microsoft got is spot on by choosing Silverlight and .net for Windows Phone development!

  15. DotNetUser says:

    @Andre – Again, if you want to do open source development, go with Andriod. Why even bother with Win Phone 7? Surely you see some potential with Microsoft to be interested…

    Microsoft's .NET platform is far superior and easier at the same time than open source alternatives like PHP, Python or even Java and is backed by solid development/design tools like Visual Studio and Expression.

  16. DotNetUser2 says:

    @DotNetUser not sure what visual studio product you are using maybe six? Vs/DotNet tries to do everything and unforunately ends up doing nothing well. I believe Microsoft doesn't have any plan what so ever at this point they are so in scramble mood. Webforms is the best of the worse but at least it lasted, mvc isn't out of beta (at least that is how the product feels) and Microsoft is already releasing the razor view engine with yet another programming syntax. When is this madness going to end? Seriously, we are given an alphabet soup of technologies why can't Microsoft give US one COMPLETE tool that freaking works right and be done with it? We don't need or want 10 different tools and our job is too pick which one sucks less for a particular task and use it. Ironically products that truly do work Microsoft just stops development Visual Basic, Visual Foxpro, and Ajax toolkit all come to mind. I truly hope that management of Visual Studio and .NET stay out of the sql server team. Sql Server does rock, it is by far the best out there and the "ONLY" good product in the development family Microsoft has left.

  17. Andrew says:

    Hi Somasegar! I am as enthused by the possibilities for VB hands as you are. However we do seem to be dealing with quite a strange flavour of VBA with this Phone Emulator. For example, can someone please tell me how to call a textbox on another page from button code on a Main page to get off the ground. In VBA one uses the forms! call.


  18. srivatsn says:

    Hi Andrew,

     You can just call page1.textbox1.text from the button's handler. page1 is here is an object of the class Page1 and you'll have a reference to it if it's embedded inside Mainpage. If you want to navigate to Page1, you can use System.Windows.Navigation.NavigationService.Navigate(…). You can look at the DataboundApplication template – it has an example of a MainPage.xaml and a DetailsPage.xaml and shows how data is passed between pages.

  19. Sven says:

    Hi, my VB.NET app is almost done and I want to publish it soon in the App Hub. When will the final tools be available or could I try to submit my app with the CTP tools compiled?

    Thank you!

  20. S. Somasegar says:

    Hi Sven,

    The team is working on putting the finishing touches as we speak and we hope to deliver the final tools by the end of this year.


  21. Sven says:

    Hi Soma

    Thank you for your quick response! Can't wait to publish it 🙂


  22. Jeremy says:

    Hi Soma –

    Thanks for the helpful information, and for continuing to reply to comments on this blog entry.

    I am a Visual Basic programmer who is excited about developing for Windows Phone.

    I don't like to install CTP or Beta or Release Candidate software on my main development machine.  So I set up a virtual machine to use for playing around with this stuff.  But I have had some problems with things not working in my virtual environment.  SO, I am anxious to install the [final versions of the] phone devl tools in my main environment.

    Right now I have Visual Studio 2010 Pro and Expression Studio 4 installed.

    I think the next step would be to install the final version of the Windows Phone Devl Tools – will this change at all when the final version of the Visual Basic add-on is released?

    Then, I assume I will install the final version of the Visual Basic add-on.

    Finally, I will install SP1 for Microsoft Blend 4.

    Do you see anything wrong with my proposed order of installing tools?

    I am worried that the final version of the Visual Basic Tools for WinPhone will be released but I won't realize that it is out.  I assume that you will announce the release via a new Blog entry.  Is that the first place that I should expect to see the anouncement?  Or is there a better site to be checking regularly for news on this release?

    Finally, if you have any more detailed info about when to expect the final version of Visual Basic Tools for WinPhone to be available, I would love to hear that.

    Thanks a ton,

    Jeremy Ellis

  23. Lisa Feigenbaum says:


    The install order you've suggested sounds good. (Visual Studio 2010 Pro + Windows Phone Developer Tools RTW + Visual Basic for Windows Phone Developer Tools RTW)

    There will not be an update to Windows Phone Developer Tools when the Visual Basic RTW version is released. The Windows Phone Developer Tools RTW release that you have installed is the right one.

    Regarding where to look for the release, Soma will certainly update this post when the Visual Basic for Windows Phone Developer Tools RTW is released. You can also subscribe to the Visual Basic headline feed here, for this and other Visual Basic related announcements:…/VB_featured_resources

    The current Visual Basic tools for Windows Phone 7 applications do not include Expression Blend support. We understand this is an important component, and are looking into this for a future version.

    Thanks again for your interest in Visual Basic for Windows Phone development. I think it's going to be a great release, and I look forward to hearing what you think too. Here are a few resources you might be interested in:

    VB Code Samples for Windows Phone:…/ff431744(VS.92).aspx

    Silverlight for Windows Phone Forum:…/63.aspx

    App Hub: Windows Phone 7 Development Forum:…/98.aspx


    Lisa Feigenbaum

    Community Program Manager

    Visual Studio

  24. Jeremy says:


    Thank you very much for the helpful and timely reply.

    I just want to clarify one thing that you said:

    The current Visual Basic tools for Windows Phone 7 applications do not include Expression Blend support.

    I understand that the Visual Basic Tools for WinPhone 7 CTP (that is available now) does not include Expression Blend support.

    Are you saying that the forthcoming Visual Basic Tools for WinPhone 7 RTW also does not include Expression Blend support?

    Either way, I agree with the following statement:  We understand this is an important component…

    About a month ago, I attended a developer training event for Windows Phone 7 in Minneapolis.  The WinPhone 7 Devl Tools RTW package was only just available, and it was understood that VB support was not available, but would be forthcoming.  The ability to perform WinPhone UI development in Blend seemed, to me, to be a highlight of this development event.  A significant portion of the demos performed by the presenters were done in Blend.

    So, since my exposure to WinPhone Devl is mostly limited to that event, it seems like VB programmers will be at a huge disadvantage until there is Blend Support for VB.  I guess you probably understand that…


  25. Ark-kun says:

    Please answer this question (just yes or no):

    Is it true that you must pay MS $99 every year to be entitled to run your own (created by yourself) apps on your own phone?

  26. phuff says:


    Yes, you must be a registered Windows Phone developer to load applications for testing onto your developer-unlocked phone.  Windows Phone developer registration costs $99/year or is free for students that are members of the DreamSpark program. Once registered, developers are able to unlock your phone and to publish applications to the Windows Phone Marketplace.  We do this to help ensure the integrity of Windows Phone Marketplace and the customer experience, so that developers and customers alike are assured that only quality tested apps and games are broadly available.

    Polita Paulus


  27. Ark-kun says:


    >Once registered, developers are able to unlock your phone and to publish applications to the Windows Phone Marketplace.  We do this to help ensure the integrity of Windows Phone Marketplace and the customer experience, so that developers and customers alike are assured that only quality tested apps and games are broadly available.

    That's not what I was talking about, isn't it? Publishing app to the Marketplace is one thing and deploing it on my own phone is another thing entirely. Your answer didn't show any evidence that debugging my own app on my own phone can hurt Windows Phone Marketplace…

    BTW no business will ever use the Windows Phone Marketplace for their private apps that emploees use.

  28. JeffLaw says:

    Clearly, Microsoft haven't thought this thing through!

    There are probably other retired folk like me that want to build simple apps just for our own use, with no thought of, or interest in, making them available to others.

    You expect me to pay US$99 per year out of my pension just for the privilege of indulging my programming hobby?

    Is students can have free access, why can't we hobby programmers also?

  29. Martin Krüger says:

    @Lisa Feigenbaum

    When are the Blend 4 templates for WP7 development going to be available? Is there a reliable timetable?

    You wrote, this will be a task for a future version of the dev tools. This sounds as if it will take a long time. Is that so? I am quite disappointed about the missing VB templates for Blend.

  30. phuff says:


    Blend 4 support for VB projects on Windows Phone 7 is coming in the next service pack of Blend. We don't have details to share on the Blend service pack release date at this time.

    Polita Paulus


  31. Martin Krüger says:

    Are there any news on when the Expression Blend VB templates for WP7 developemnt are going to be released?

  32. Joanna Mason says:

    Hi Martin,

    VB support that is on parity with C# is a high priority for the Expression Blend team and we are adding VB templates for Windows Phone 7 development. I can't provide any more details right now on when these changes will be available, but you can expect to see this in the near future, stay tuned!


  33. raul says:

    but the code is  some diferrent and vb windows phone i cant  find  tutorial  in vb so many  cSHart

  34. rul says:

    i will be cool if microsoft  makes a vb clasiic   for  windows  phone!!  total sucess

  35. Anonymous says:

    can I put the final app. im my phon (has an icon and name)?