More guidance and tool for porting iPhone & Android apps to Windows Phone

More guidance and tool for porting iPhone & Android apps to Windows Phone

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Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” is just out of the door, smoothly going to users’ phones. So, if you or your friends haven’t started to look at Windows Phone, this is great timing.

Today I’m excited to announce new guidance based on migration samples and a SQLite to SQL Server Compact database conversion tool. We hope that these new items combined with our previous extensive guides (for Android, iPhone, and Symbian Qt) will accelerate your ramp up time and improve your experience in porting apps to Windows Phone from iPhone and Android. Read below to see what we’ve got for you.

Learn by example, from what you know

First we have built a series of samples to aid you in the process of migrating your iPhone & Android applications over to Windows Phone by providing a look at the differences and similarities of each platform. Through analysis, you'll see how to implement the same functionality on Windows Phone as you have within your iPhone and Android application. We’ve started with 3 samples:

And for each sample, you’ll find the source code on Android/iPhone, the Windows Phone ported version and the porting notes. And since we had a little bit of extra time, we added a bonus track for Android developers, with a “10 simple tasks: tips & tricks” article, where we explain how common simple tasks performed during Android development can be done when doing Windows Phone development.

Finally, we also included a sample “Notification Service”, which shows how to build a multiplatform push-notification services supporting the different providers used by Android, iPhone and Windows Phone. Documentation is available here and sample code is here.

SQLite to SQL Server Compact database conversion tool

Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” includes relational database support by way of Microsoft SQL Server Compact (SQLCE). So we thought it might be handy to create a tool to aid developers in getting their database (data, schemas and views) ported over to Windows Phone without too much trouble. Differences in data types between various database platforms can make the manual migration of your data a daunting task. SQLite2SQLCE is a tool developed to make the conversion process simple by converting a SQLite database into SQLCE while simultaneously creating the default classes needed to incorporate the new database into your Windows Phone application.

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With the database conversion tool, we’ve also included a nifty tool designed to aid developers in converting their SQL queries to LINQ while simultaneously helping them to learn the new query language. LINQ (Language-Integrated Query) is a native data querying toolset integrated into the .NET Framework and use on Windows Phone.

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Documentation and a simple migration sample are available here. And by the way, the source code of these utilities is available on CodePlex.

Updated API Mapping tool

The API Mapping tool has been expanded: it now covers a few more features like sensors (Camera, Compass & Gyro), multitasking (notification, app switching & background agents) , data access (SQL, file access), launchers/choosers.
The API Mapping tool is available here: http://wp7mapping.interoperabilitybridges.com/

Porting apps to Windows Phone: we’re here to help!

Finally, once you’ve be through all our “Porting” guidance, I recommend that you follow at your own pace the “Window Phone Mango Jump Start” online video training.

We encourage developers to leave comments and questions on any article. We are watching and we are open to feedback. If you see something missing or want to suggest new API mapping or porting topic to include just go to http://wp7mapping.uservoice.com.

Jean-Christophe Cimetiere-@jccim

[Cross posted on the Interoperability@Microsoft blog

8 Comments
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  • ugg55
    23 Posts

    555ce29  Jordan Spizike  www.airjordanspizikes.com

  • Microsoft tries to copy iPhone Business Model instead of innovating. Windows Phone Market Place is completely empty even compared to Android. It would have been much clever to allow people to deploy on their own device freely instead of paying even only 10$ for Chevron because from Marketing viewpoint it would show the world that Microsoft is not as closed as the iPhone.

    As for the guidance booklet, for me it's completely missing its goal, it focus on the easiest part: it's not c# or objective c syntax which is difficult to port, or even the service api, it is the whole bunch of GUI framework. And there's no real guide only superficial ones.

  • @JohnBarton: point taken. I don't have an answer for you at this point, but I'm looking at this. In the meantime, please check the forum and vote for/suggest your idea: http://wpdev.uservoice.com

    JC

  • All this looks really good, but I'd like to share a conversation we had here in the office.

    We are all software developers, and a few of us would love to try out some of the new SDK's - and write some apps for our windows phones. Trouble is you have to pay the membership fee before you are allowed to do deploy. To us it seems odd, as this is stopping us from playing with all the new cool technologies. Granted, if as a company we wanted to write for windows phone it wouldn't be an issue - but in order for us as developers to play and use it - and to even suggest using it to the people we work for, we'd like to play!

    We were trying to work out how much money this subscription approach makes MS, and wondering what the trade off is with developers like us do haven't "jumped in" yet because of it all. Given the ultra competitive market between iOS, android and windows phone I'd have thought MS would be jumping through hoops to get developers involved.

    Some mechanism of getting your own code onto your phone/xbox etc wouldn't impact MS, and would I'm sure drive a lot of developers to use your new technologies.

    Sharing with others via the marketplace etc does sense to have some fee attached.

    Can you shed any light on this - from a MS perspective?

    John

  • @Justinyu: i just send you an email :)

    Let's chat

  • Great post, thanks.

    JC, I was curious how I could get in contact with the Windows Phone Developer Blog team (besides comments). The company I work for, Gripwire, has built some pretty cool networking functionality for Windows Phone that can communicate with iOS and Android and I'd like to get yours, or any other Windows Dev Blog members thoughts on it.

    Send me a message if you're interested. Thanks.

    -Justin

  • jaxim
    57 Posts

    I would love to see a way to create WP7 themed apps using Flash Builder.

  • cmwind
    71 Posts

    keep it up the good work dev team