Developer News: Beta Mango Tools Available Today

Developer News: Beta Mango Tools Available Today

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Today Microsoft is showing off many of the new features coming in the next version of Windows Phone, code named Mango. We highlighted a few features like hardware accelerated IE9 with HTML5, increased multitasking capabilities and the addition of Twitter to the People hub at Mobile World Congress in February. During April’s MIX11 event, we gave developers a deep dive into new Mango capabilities and opportunities and promised new tools in May.

I’m pleased to announce that the beta release of the Windows Phone Developer Tools that support Mango will be available for download today, in just a few hours! We also have some exciting news to share about Windows Phone Marketplace.

First the tools. Developers can use this beta release to get ready for the upcoming Windows Phone OS release. The new application platform capabilities coming in Mango deliver the top features you have asked for:

- Background processing

- New profiler and emulator for testing

- Use of Silverlight + XNA together

- Silverlight 4

- IE9 web browser control

- Live Tile enhancements: use of back of tiles and ability to update Live Tiles locally

- Deep linking into apps from notifications and Live Tiles

- Additional sensors; direct camera access, compass & gyro

- Fast application switching

- Networking / sockets for communications

- Local SQL database for structured storage

- Access to calendar and contacts for apps

You also asked us for new ways to keep customers engaged with your apps, so we’ve taken steps in Mango that will help keep great apps front and center. The Mango release allows you to create a new wave of apps and games that appeal to consumers by further extending the popular Windows Phone design system. Mango also helps apps remain engaged with the customer and contextually relevant through integration with the Bing Search, Pictures and Music & Video experiences, as well as added functionality for the Live Tiles that live on the Start screen. For example, with Bing Search, when searching for products, movies, events or places, the customer will see among the results a link to a “Quick Card” for that specific search. That card contains an “apps” panel (formerly known as the “extras” panel).  This panel will display both installed and non-installed apps associated with that search query term. This is just one example of how the app experience is different on a Windows Phone in ways that give you a unique opportunity.

With Mango we are not only improving the way we merchandise your apps within our Marketplace, we are also exposing your apps as a part of our customers’ everyday experiences. You want more ways for consumers to find your apps; and consumers have been raving about the Windows Phone design. In short, we are listening and investing accordingly. You should expect us to continue to deliver technology and services unlike anyone else.

Below is simple graphic to help show how new tools and resources are unlocking additional developer capabilities:

image

Another way we’re growing the Windows Phone ecosystem is by expanding geographically. With Mango, Windows Phone Marketplace will expand from 16 to 35 countries where both app submission and app purchase are supported locally.

Today

Adding with Mango

Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, UK, USA

Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, India, Japan, Korea (South), Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, South Africa, Sweden, Taiwan

In addition, Windows Phone Marketplace now supports app submission in China, Israel and Luxembourg. For those countries that are not yet locally supported by Marketplace, we continue to expand the Global Publisher Program we announced in early March. Today, developers in 69 Middle Eastern and African countries can submit applications via Yalla Apps. App Port supports 13 countries in East Asia. APPA Market is available to developers in 19 central European countries. And both Device7 and MTel service China.

To better reach customers worldwide, I’m also pleased to announce today that Mango will offer a new web version of Windows Phone Marketplace. This will enable customers to shop, share and buy/download apps and games from any PC and send them directly to their phones. You get more visibility for your apps with no extra work. The Mango Marketplace will bring several new features and capabilities that Todd Brix will be expanding upon here a little later.

We’re extremely grateful for all that the Windows Phone developer community has accomplished in a few short months and we’re excited to see what you can do with Mango. Today we offer more than 17,000 apps, and with 42,000 registered developers and counting, plenty more are on the way. We recognize that the strength of our developer community and the Windows Phone ecosystem is a big reason why analysts are so optimistic about the Windows Phone ecosystem in predicting sales of hundreds of millions of units by 2015. With the release of beta tools for Mango, we hope we’ve taking another big step toward giving you exactly what you want from a platform so that you are inspired to create the next generation of amazing Windows Phone apps and games. In the coming weeks we will announce the date when App Hub will begin accepting Mango apps for certification.

Whether you’re a new or existing Windows Phone developer, now is the perfect time to take the next step and be what’s next in mobile. The checklist is simple:

Thank you,

Matt Bencke

General Manager, Windows Phone Developer and Marketplace Experiences

80 Comments
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  • Slovenia is also not supported in AppHub and is a country in the EU. Is money from Slovenian developers any different than from developers in any other European country? Get your LCA working on supporting a single workflow process for all EU countries - in other words do a Fallback to Microsoft Luxembourg for registering developers form all currently unsupported EU countries.

    Ah I see the picture there are some personal-connections that need to get some business. Huh? Isn't that against Microsoft code of conduct and should be reported to any manager? Ah, someone missed the yearly training from MS HR!

  • manutmu
    1 Posts

    Please add Romania to supported countries also!!!

  • More countries and languages is definitely a good thing.  Now, the question is, will Zune music, movies, TV, and music video purchase and streaming be made available in all those countries/languages?  Will all features such as turn-by-turn navigation, text-to-speech SMS, voice control, Bing Vision, et al, work in all those countries and languages?  The lack of availability of those features is hampering the phone around the world.  The Windows Phone must fully support every one of its features in every country in which it is available without exception.

  • Please include Romania to the supported countries list. A 3d party global publisher is not always a good option when you consider all the overhead cost associated with publishing applications. Sometimes the numbers just don't add up and it doesn't make sense to invest the time and effort in creating certain types of apps. Therefore, please remove this barrier for us.

    Thanks!

  • Please support Thai in Mango, I see the fast growing at here but most of them ask about the local country support.

    So, anyway put it to mango. : I

  • Can you improve the serch of contacts, in windows mobile 6.5, we could search the conttacs in several camps, but now !!!

    Regards

  • vietnam
    1 Posts

    Hi, can you let us know if WIFI HOTSPOT / Internet Tethering available in the Mango?.

    I am using HTC Trophy but very disliked because lack of this function & I am thinking to move to iOS or Android.....

    Thanks for your response.

  • Mohsin
    2 Posts

    Hello ,

    I am Newbie here , Can anyone tell me how to Unlock emulator ?

    I unlocked it before installing Mango SDK  , but after Mango installtion I am facing the same problem.

    Thanks in advance.

  • riseagn
    28 Posts

    hi, we need arabic language suppoe you read it and my comment reach far

    specially the keyboard on windows phone 7 and the ability to read and write

    i don't know where to post this but i hop

    i really don't want to buy any other smart phone os and im totally interested in windows phone

    most of arabian users want to buy windows phone 7 but they all want the arabic language support and the ability to type in arabic

    please provide arabic language on windows phone 7 so people can buy it

  • @gordigor. In this page, they say "The “Mango” release will be available for free to Windows Phone 7 customers and is scheduled to ship on new phones beginning this fall"

    www.microsoft.com/.../05-24WinPhonePreviewPR.mspx

  • I can't seem to find this anywhere. Is the mango update going to be available for existing phones, i.e. HTC H7?

  • While this all looks great, will there be ActiveSync or WMDC for WM7.x devices. This is still a pain. Not all users/corporations want their stuff in the cloud. Cannot find the list of 500 features in Mango, so the question remains. I am presently looking at 3 mobile upgrades, and will hold if there will be WMDC, otherwise will have to move from WM6 to some other OS.  Other OSes have allowed 3rd party apps to access and sync with their devices. While it WM7 made for a more "locked down" device, it denigrated people who don't, can't or won't use the cloud.

  • It is possible to have some functionality that allow the user to specify a different phone number for the mobile phone and the text message. I have this problem now, in my country the phone number for call is something like this: 88889999 but in order to send text messages i have to use 000 88889999, now I can send messages and calls, without problem, but when i receibe a message the phone doesn't say me the name of the contact, even if I have the contact saved.

  • I am happy to see India's name in the list of 19countries in which Market place will be enabled with the launch of Mango

  • Matt, please give me answer about web-reference? will you add it?

  • @Matt please please enable wifi tethering and work with 3UK, for £25 a month we can get truly unlimited data with tethering included.

  • gulei
    3 Posts

    Thank you for the clarification Matt. This is different to what claimed in this blog: "In addition, Windows Phone Marketplace NOW supports app submission in China, Israel and Luxembourg."

  • I have to admit that I'm a bit disapointed about Location Emulator support in Mango Tools; the older GPS emulator recipe (windowsteamblog.com/.../windows-phone-gps-emulator.aspx) was a lot much better for testing applications closer to real usage.

  • xepwn
    5 Posts

    @michaelharsh To put a business case on it,  I'd like to view Silverlight webparts (compiled against Silverlight 4) that have been deployed on a Sharepoint site. My company makes does a lot of heavy Silverlight development and uses SharePoint very heavily and this functionality would be extremely useful in various scenarios.

  • J4de
    2 Posts

    Does this also mean that card payment can become a reality via APIs from PayPal or ANOther provider?

  • J4de
    2 Posts

    Any news on MP3 playback capability, also an app to support audible books (audible.co.uk/com), interaction between apps on the phone (e.g. barcode scanning via the revised camera interface) to call a task/chooser to get a barcode into another app?  Also enterprise deployment within a given company or for the provision of vertical market apps supporting or is this expected to be done via a free app in the marketplace enabling lockdown via IP comms?  Finally improved Bluetooth interfacing to support HID interfaces (e.g. CS3070 hand scanner).  I'm impressed with the improvements to come, there is more to be done.

  • @David Sousek - 3rd parties are already able to integrate into certain hubs (e.g. 3rd party apps such as Photo Studio, Thumba Photo Editor are already integrating their apps into our Picture Hub; Last.fm, YouTube, TuneIn Radio are leveraging our Music & Video hub).  With Mango, we are extending that even further by allowing additional Hub integration and is one of the major focal points we want our developers to consider as they are building their applications as it provides a great differentiator to our competitors and makes your apps really stand out!

  • @jvcalin - there is a great discussion about VB on our AppHub Developer forum, I'd suggest you start there as it has some great advice - forums.create.msdn.com/.../69936.aspx

  • @gulei, @iseif and @Elad - per my previous post to @Rahdoo - please review the MIX presentation by Todd Brix at channel9.msdn.com/.../DVC05.  The new AppHub functionality will not rollout until the July timeframe for both Israel and China.  I hope that helps.

  • Mango looks very promising, thank you for your work. The one feature I am still missing is the ability to more integrate 3rd party application into the overall user experience. The main difference of Windows Phone platform against its competitors is the concept of hubs in my opinion. But I think that to make this concept work in long-term, the SDK should allow 3rd party apps to extend People Hub, Pictures Hub etc. It would be great if 3rd party app may add additional items to "what's new" for a person or add the whole another tab there.

    I think that the stability of the os/user experience is the main concern why this is not allowed now, but when the app is written in managed code, I can imagine that it may be possible to try to load the 3rd party DLL implementing the prepared interfaces, execute the methods and if the 3rd party implementation will behave slow or have other problems, the os can kill it and potentially inform user that the feature has been blocked due to some reason.

    Do you plan to allow us developers to extend the hubs in the future? I think it would make a real difference if implemented in a meaningfull way.

    Thanks again and keep the good work!

  • @Advocate - I appreciate your pain around tethering (using your device as a modem) as this has been something that I've used in the past.  Tethering, in the past was something that we managed independently of the Mobile Operators (e.g. AT&T, Orange, Verizon).  In recent years, the Mobile Operators have now taken ownership of this functionality x-all platforms (e.g. our competitors as well as us).  We are continually working with them and our OEM partners to enable this functionality for our devices, but at this time there isn't an announcement that we've made in regards to rolling out this feature.  Stay Tuned!

  • @Nattanahel Alberto Chaves Moya - we are continually looking at features to improve our user's experience.  Bundling apps into folders or some variation of that, is something we are looking into, but at this time there is no announcement around this functionality in Mango.

  • @ahsal - We are continually working to add as many dialects to the platform  as quickly as possible.  As with any product release, there are choices and associated costs that need to be factored into the calculations on what can and cannot be done based on various factors (e.g. time to market, localization costs, technical feasibility).  To that note, however; we are working as diligently as possible to rollout to as many markets as possible as you'll see and hear over the next 8-12 months.

  • jvcalin
    1 Posts

    Is VB support going to be available soon? Just tried to update and was disappointed to discover it doesn't work with the VB SDK. :(

  • @xepwn - I'm a PM on the Silverlight for Windows Phone team.  What scenarios are you trying to enable that aren't supported by the app platform and require the Silverlight browser plug-in?

  • gulei
    3 Posts

    Second @Elad, when will developer in China be able to register? China is obviously not an option at users.create.msdn.com/Register. Further, the country list at msdn.microsoft.com/.../hh202924(v=VS.92).aspx is not available.

  • Wow! Does anyone know, is there support for Web-reference?

  • Ahmed79
    2 Posts

    Wayne Arabic??

    We do not want Arab lists

    All what we want is to support the Arabic Language

  • JSern
    1 Posts

    Where's Malaysia? We need the Marketplace here ASAP, you're losing money Microsoft, BE WISE

  • Arabic is a high requirement. I am developing apps for those languages as well.

  • How about unlocking tethering?

    Either wifi or by USB please.

  • iseif
    6 Posts

    Hey Matt Bencke...

    These are very good news and I'm sure the WP is getting the 1st mobile OS in the market after the release of Mango.. and big kudos for all the updates and all the API.. developing for WP is getting more and more funny and easy.

    I have couple of question,

    1. You've wrote above that now the marketplace is open for the Israeli developers - but somehow, the last time I checked the Apps Hub registeration page, Israel was not yet listed.. Any news when it will be updated so we can register?

    2. What's about new keyboard languages? as Hebrew? Arabic? I think that the most of the Hebrew/Arabic users won't have a problem with the UI to be in English - but it will be appreciated if there will be Hebrew/Arabic keyboards so we can use these languages in our emails/SMS/IM etc... I think it is a good idea to enlarge keyboards (not the UI for now) - so by these, many users in many countries will be happy :).

    3. One annoying problem that was in the last version, and I raised this issue many times in the past but no one answered me, is the Sound On/Off issue - if I will set the phone in Mute - the apps sounds, the notifaction sound etc.. will still played - and this is really annoying!! I think that when someone will set the phone's Sound Off then he expect not to hear any sound (maybe he is in a meeting for example) - so the OS should force all the sounds to be off.

    Thanks a lot and go ahead,

    Seif.

  • Didn't they forget ARABIC languge ???

    with all pretty huge mango thing but I'm really disappointed :(

  • Malaysia is missing from the list. So is Thailand. There are a lot of developers from there. Please add them, credit card or payment works around the world. Why limit the countries from selling apps ?

  • Really no new stunning feature there that aren't already available on the Android Samsung Galaxy S2.  And your market place all of that really is available to us now.  quote '17,000 apps'  sheesh we 100's of thousands...

    And also have the advantage of no viruses...

    Good luck.

  • ahsal
    1 Posts

    Why there is no support for Arabic in mango ??!!

  • xepwn
    5 Posts

    Oops I think I'm interpreting the page I posted incorrectly.

    After reviewing it a bit more I am believing now that the Mango version IE 9 and the updated mango web browser control will not support viewing Silverlight-enabled websites. Correct? In my initial testing using the updated Mango IE 9 in the new emulator and visiting Silverlight.net this seems to be the case.

  • xepwn
    5 Posts

    Just for clarification... based on from what I have read here:

    msdn.microsoft.com/.../ff431795%28v=VS.92%29.aspx

    IE9 Browser does not support viewing Silverlight content on a webpage.

    However, I can create an application that uses the WebBrowser control that does allow viewing Silverlight content on a webpage, correct? So ... I still access sites like Silverlight.net to to their full potential with the Mango IE9 Mobile?

  • Hi, There is something now or planning for the future to organice apps, I have almost 20 apps installed, when I reach 100 I will fell tired, I think it must be something that allow me to put a group of apps together. I don't know, something like games.

  • Will custom apps be able to tap into the existing hubs? I.e. if I am working on a mobile app for a CRM system, could that app add details from the CRM system (latest orders/interactions) to a person, and have them show up just like emails and conversations?

  • Elad
    4 Posts

    Matt, thanks for your reply, but I don't need assistance in the registration process.

    I want to check if indeed, like you wrote, Israel has been added to the developer countries - registration pages and docs do not seem to be updated.

  • @Rhadoo - Todd Brix gave a great session at MIX 11 in Las Vegas on April 14th on the monetization and AppHub updates that will come with Mango.  You can view that Todd's presentation as well as his slides at: channel9.msdn.com/.../DVC05.  I think this will make you happy!

  • Sweet!  Silverlight plus XNA sounds like a very nice feature.

    Matt, any good resource to acces and play with the avatar?

  • @Elad - if you are having issues, please visit msdn.microsoft.com/.../hh202930(VS.92).aspx as it has a lot of good advice as well as the process for contacting the team on submission issues.

  • I just tested the new SDK and IE9 for Windows Phone Mango still does not allow drag and drop events from applications like Google Maps. Why? This is a must have feature so existing applications/websites does not stop working.

  • Rhadoo
    2 Posts

    Yup. Romania is not in the list. How depressing. I am really curious if you have as many .NET or at least possible wp7 enthusiast developers in Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Greece and South Africa put together than you would have in Romania. But I guess WP7 is not in need of more apps.

    And btw. Are there any improvements on the monetization procedures for WP7 submitted apps? Spending a lot of time and money to send in those forms all the way to the IRS in the US is one major drawback, to get the ITIN number just so that we can send another form all the way to Microsoft, in the US again, so that we can finally, after 3 or 4 months (if all our documents are ok) start seeing some income for our apps.

    In the worst case scenario, it makes sense to send SOME documents just once, and to local Microsoft offices. Why do we need to send them all the way to US. Developers just want to make APPS, and if possible earn revenue. Making money doing what we like.

    WHY does Microsoft make things so complicated?

  • Elad
    4 Posts

    "In addition, Windows Phone Marketplace now supports app submission in China, Israel and Luxembourg."

    Israel and China do not appear in the country drop down list on the registration page.

  • @DubleG - Correct, without the Mango Bits you won't be able to validate the functionality outside the emulator at this time.  As mentioned previously, please stay tuned to AppHub for announcements on beta Mango bits.

  • @Galdo, if your background is transparent it will use the theme color, google/bing it there is atlease one tutorial about this.

  • The Mango tools are now available for download!  Go get 'em while they are hot - create.msdn.com/.../WPDT_7.1_Beta

  • DubleG
    1 Posts

    Hi,

    so developers will not be able to use any of the mango SDK dlls on current devices? Not even sensors (Compass)?

  • Galdo
    1 Posts

    Can we have more details about the new emulator?

    Will developpers be allowed to see their icon sync with theme color in the application list (it's Microsoft and associates only right now)... We can only sync for the tile (by using a transparent background)

  • When do you think the download links will be posted for the 7.1 dev tools.

  • @BNID - appreciate your feedback.  In App purchasing is on our roadmap and we agree that it is very important to both developers and consumers, so we hear you, but we haven't announced anything at this time.  As for the pricing change, I'll provide this guidance back to my Marketplace team, appreciate your thoughts.

  • @xepwn - here is the location for the Silverlight information you requested - msdn.microsoft.com/.../hh237342(v=VS.96).aspx

  • BNID
    6 Posts

    Few things that are still missing from the Marketplace that I hope are still coming for the fall - Ability to change the price of an app without resubmitting (i.e. change the app to free for limited time). And In-App purchases. Allowing these 2 changes will help us developers big time!

  • @xepwn - the full list of functionality for Silverlight 4 (which will be the version on Mango) will be available with the content and developer tools release later this afternoon.  Check back at http://msdn.microsoft.com once we've announced what the tools are capable of for Silverlight and search on "Silverlight for Windows Phone"

  • xepwn
    5 Posts

    Will the new version of IE9 Mobile allow for in-browser Silverlight support? *Pretty please with a cherry on top* =D

  • @ jvitor83 - as Andy Lees announced this AM, Mango will be available to our retail community in the fall of this calendar year.

  • @RualStorge - please see my response to Goodbye84 below for more details on the Mango bits.  Yes we will be providing our developers a preview of our bits prior to launch, but again, we have yet to announce that date at this time.

  • Thank you Matt, (And the development team) One thing I STRONGLY request is the ability to get an early load of mango. The Emulator is fantastic, please don't get my wrong, but it's not the device. For an app that is designed to be used out on the world (My app on the market place is currently based around Disc Golf) I need ot be able to carry my phone around and test the app as it would be used. If I can't test it in real world situations until Mango's release or days before, I can't ensure my app is of the quality my users expect from me. (I set a pretty high bar, but at 4.5 stars I'm proud!) Plus with my luck if I have to wait for my wireless telco to give me the mango release, honestly my users will have my app more then two months before I'm able to get it legitimately. (I omitted the wireless telcos name but I'm fairly certain you can guess)

    Thanks again, help us help you help us help you make the Windows Phone 7 the best mobile platform currently available.

  • When will MarketPlace available for the countries listed? I just bought a WP7 Phone, but the MP not work in my region. Its kind of frustating.

  • Thanks Matt, That is what wanted to know. Just one last thing are there any plans to realse early builds Mango to developers?

  • @Strider_Auz  - I appreciate the feedback, I will definately provide these suggestions back to the Marketplace publishing team.  As you know, we are continually looking at ways to improve the experiences for our GPP community until we launch within those locales.  Again, thanks for your a) excitement about Mango and b) suggestions on areas where we can improve.

  • @Goodbye84 - Currently at this time the Developer Tools and SDK for Mango are the only products we have released to the developer community with this announcement.  We have yet to announce when the actual Mango bits will be available.  Stay tuned to AppHub and this blog for future announcements!

  • Will there be a  point where devs can get Mango loaded onto our actual dev devices or do we need to wait for launch for that?

  • Sheeds
    205 Posts

    Matt,

    Great idea for the Marketplace on the web.  Delivers a platform for ehanced functionality over the Zune Client.  Looking forward to that launching.

    Can I suggest you consider maybe adding some additional criteria to the APP submission process- that can flow onto the online marketplace user experience.

    eg: Regions:

    - Country App was developed in.  I would like to sort by Aussie Developers if possible, to support local development if two similar apps exist etc.

    - Region App relates to.  If it is a Sydney timetable App = Region is Australia, (+State/City?).  If it is a global app then = global.

    - Region Restriction.  If the APP is for the US marketplace only, have it prominently say so or be sortable.  Many App reviews online don't raise this - and even Tag reader allows apps to show on the Zune Client Markwtplace in Australia for US only Apps (eg Amazon) - with the only indication Aussie can't get it being no "get it"/download button

    Please thinks about these possible enhancements (over just name/limited function searching) to make our Marketplace use a more intuitive and valuable experience (as the number of apps grows, this just becomes more and more important)...

    Cheers - and excited by the Mango sweetness coming our way soon!

  • "1) replace current tools w/the Mango Tools, which will allow you to target either our current WP7 SDK or WP7 Mango SDK for your application publishing"

    Thanks, Matt. That's what I wanted to know.

  • @ Prashant C - currently it is not possible to run side-by-side with our current SDK, but there are a couple of options: 1) replace current tools w/the Mango Tools, which will allow you to target either our current WP7 SDK or WP7 Mango SDK for your application publishing or 2) if you have the option of having 2 computers, run one on the current WP7 SDK and one on the WP7 Mango SDK.  I'd highly recommend option 1 as it gives you the flexibility to build and publish off both platforms.

  • Is this going to be the SDK and the update for developers to test our apps live? I know running the OS before release will come just wondering if it's part of today's new tools.

  • Ah, more love for Eastern Europe, please. :)

    By the way, will the new SDK require the previously released one with the January update, or can we just remove that one and install this new version?

  • @Claudiu Farcas - as you can see by our new rollout plan, we are continually working to rollout to as many countries as we can in a managed timeframe to ensure a good local and global user experience.  Developers are still able to publish applications outside of our country rollout list by leveraging our Global Publishing Partners which I've listed above.

  • Sounds great. Waiting to get my hands on one.

    You know what else would be great? If you could make the country that is currently irrevocably attached to the primary Windows Live Id on the marketplace account, changeable.

  • Is it possible run it side-by-bye with current stable SDK?

  • Hmm.. Romania still missing from supported countries! :|