Next App Star: See your app featured in a Windows Phone TV ad

That’s right – we’ve cooked up something very big for developers in 2013. I’ll fill you in on the details in a moment.

By now you’ve probably noticed that for Windows Phone 8 we’ve deployed an all-new infrastructure focused on creating a great experience for both consumers and developers. Our new developer platform brings features that deliver both scale and opportunity – including investments in a common UX design language, global distribution, and a flexible set of business models to support different approaches to monetization. You can read more about our guiding principles in my recent post: Reflecting on 2012: scale and opportunity. We will continue to innovate and find ways to improve the developer experience, but I’m pleased to say that with so many big 2012 deployments behind us, we’ve got the pieces in place to make 2013 a great year for Windows Phone developers. In fact, we’re kicking off the new year with a one-of-a-kind opportunity.

Windows Phone Next App Star contest launches today

Print To help your apps get more visibility with more customers, today we are launching a new contest with a very special top prize – featured placement of your app in a Windows Phone prime-time TV ad in the U.S.

The contest is called Windows Phone Next App Star, and it is open to Windows Phone developers worldwide. It’s easy to participate; registered developers can just visit Dev Center to opt-in* by March 5th, and we’ll enter your catalog of published apps in the competition.

If you haven’t yet developed a Windows Phone app (or you want to make tweaks to an existing app), you can register today and publish your app by March 5th to participate (note: your app must be published and live by March 5th to participate).

Check out this short video with Channel 9’s Laura Foy for more contest details.

 

How the contest works

Here’s where the fun begins. . . we will judge the app submissions for the contest based on an equal weighting of user ratings and app quality, including your implementation of new Windows Phone 8 features, like Live Tiles. We’ll narrow the field to 64 entries to participate in a head-to-head, bracket-style competition with public voting. Over the next several weeks of voting the field of 64 will be narrowed to 32, 16, 8, 4, 2, and finally the grand prize winner. There will be prizes along the way to encourage people to participate (more on that later) and ways for you to promote your app and gain new fans.

Great prizes

There will be thousands of dollars in prizes for the developers of the 64 apps that get selected, including a Nokia Lumia 920 Windows Phone and a one-year free Dev Center subscription. The last app standing will win the Next App Star challenge and the grand prize of placement in one of our Windows Phone primetime TV advertisements in the U.S., bringing national exposure and a lot of buzz to one developer’s creation.

This isn’t just about picking the most popular app in the Store. Windows Phone Next App Star is about giving developers a shot at being the next big hit. You don’t have to be a longtime developer on the Windows Phone platform — even a newcomer can win fans and win big. The resources in our Dev Center, this blog, and our team of experts will provide guidance to help you to create a new app or fine-tune an existing one to get the best possible scores.

Heading up our Developer Experience team is Emilio Salvador Prieto. Emilio will be a regular contributor on the blog, starting with a series of regular posts providing more detail on the program and insights to help you maximize your opportunity in this contest. We have much more in store for the year from Emilio and his team. Watch for his post with more contest details.

Windows Phone Next App Star is our way of thanking our community of developers for creating such a great array of dynamic, exciting Windows Phone apps. Please take a moment to visit Dev Center to register for the contest. We can’t wait to meet the Windows Phone Next App Star field of competitors!

 

* Contest open only to students, hobbyists, or developers in the field of software technology 18+. Submission period ends 3/5/13 and public voting period ends 4/8/13. For details, see Official Rules.