Marketplace comes to China & India; also improves search and 7.0 & 7.5 app update options

Marketplace comes to China & India; also improves search and 7.0 & 7.5 app update options

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Today we’re sharing several new Marketplace and App Hub enhancements that dramatically expand your opportunity with Windows Phone 7.5.

Expansion in China & India
To start, we’re pleased to announce that as of today developers in China can now register via App Hub and begin submitting apps for availability in any of our supported Marketplace countries (sorry, not including China at this time). This opens up the Windows Phone opportunity to the tens-of-thousands of talented and creative developers in China. We’ll continue working to bring Marketplace and App Hub to even more markets. In the meantime, we offer the Global Publisher Program in major markets around the world, giving developers in those countries access to Marketplace via local intermediaries.

Similarly, we’re pleased to announce that as of today Windows Phone customers in India are now able to purchase your apps and games via Windows Phone Marketplace!

Maintaining Windows Phone 7.0 and 7.5 Versions of Your Apps Simultaneously
Effective today, developers who have updated their Windows Phone 7.0 applications to Windows Phone 7.5 (OS 7.1, aka Mango) have new options for how they manage updates for both apps. The 7.0 and 7.5 versions of an application share the same catalog details, pricing (including trial and geographic distribution options), ratings & reviews and hidden/live property if in a published state. However, each version of the application can now be updated, unpublished and re-published independently. You can view both versions of the application on the lifecycle tab in App Hub.

It is important to note that there can only be one in-progress update at any time across both versions of an app. The update in progress must be published to Marketplace before another version of the app can be updated. Also, catalog details and pricing changes made as part of a 7.0 app update will affect the 7.5 version of the app and vice versa. Finally, be aware that if you publish a new 7.5 app there is no way to later add a 7.0 version.

More information about maintaining Windows Phone 7.0 and 7.5 versions of your app can be found here.

Fewer Keywords, Better Shopping
We know that app discovery and merchandizing are critical to your success. A customer’s ability to search for an app and quickly find what she or he is looking for is a core characteristic of an efficient Marketplace. To further improve the Marketplace shopping and download experience, we have started enforcing the published guideline of 5 keywords per application. While this should help maintain a more productive marketplace for everyone, you should take this opportunity to review the keywords you’ve submitted for your applications to ensure that the first five keywords best describe your app to potential customers. App Hub will still allow you to enter more than five keywords as part of your submission or application update; however, the search functionality across Marketplace will now use only the first five keywords.

As you can see, we’re working across all aspects of Marketplace to make sure we’re giving you the best and broadest opportunities possible. Marketplace is always evolving to give you and our mutual customers a consistently great experience. Your input is a major factor in determining what features and enhancements we prioritize. Please keep it coming.

As always, we thank you for your time and energy and encourage you to keep exploring the potential of Windows Phone 7.5.

Todd Brix,

Senior Director, Windows Phone Marketplace

17 Comments
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  • Windows Phone Marketplace to Romania/Moldova - when?

  • I configured a new live id on Windows Phone 7 (HTC Mozart) with country as India. I've also added a credit card to this live id from zune.net. In India we have an additional PIN for credit card before you can finalize the transaction. However when i try to buy apps from Windows phone market place, due to this PIN, the buy experience on phone does not work. After clocking "buy", is says the phone wil redirect to merchant website for accepting PIN. THen the phone opens the browers, asks my live id credentials and then gives me an error "40001" Sometimes it charges my credit card without asking me PIN and does not allow me to download the app. What a mess!!!

  • When will it come to Pakistan? We developers here are disappointed by the approach big companies have towards us. Neither Microsoft nor Google have given us liberty to publish our apps directly to their marketplaces :( :( :(

  • I think i have to start working on my windows phone app, to impress my parents and friends in India..Love WindowsPhone and my home India

  • @abm - sorry, I obviously wasn't being clear enough. I KNOW that changing the country on a Windows LiveID account does not change the country on the Zune/Marketplace account. That is the point; it is possible on Windows LiveID to do so, but not on Zune/Marketplace.

    The people on WindowsLivehelp.com can't do anything about this. What is more to the point is that the people behind Zune/Marketplace can't, or won't, do anything about this either. This has been going on since at least 2007, and with no visible progress on resolving the situation, despite Jessica Zahn saying:

    "What matters here is what country your ZUNE account is - not your Live ID. Microsoft does allow you to change your billing country; Zune, for certain reasons (licensing restrictions), does not. So whatever country you created your Zune ID with is what it is to stay - and Support can't change it, unfortunately.

    I can promise that this is a significant issue that the Zune group is considering; for now, we have to recommend creating a new Zune account with a different Live ID if your Zune account country doesn't match your actual country (or, the marketplace you want to use)."

    I see absolutely no point in getting a Windows Phone until there is either a possibility of changing my country or deleting my Zune account to start afresh.

  • abm
    268 Posts

    @Geoff Coupe, Changing the country from account.live.com doesnt change it on billing.microsoft.com Perhaps people at http://windowslivehelp.com/ know how to fix this!!

  • @abm - yes, http://billing.microsoft.com goes to my XBOX live account, where, as you say, you cannot change the country. I don't actually have an xBox, I think this account has been set up by Zune/Marketplace.

    However, if I go to my Windows LiveID account (http://account.live.com), there I CAN change my country. I can also delete my Windows LiveID if I want to. Of course, it's the Zune account I want to delete, and the Windows LiveID account that I want to keep - precisely the opposite of what Microsoft allows me to do.

  • Not wanting to be overly critical (no, honest) but the title of this post will have set up Chinese users for disappointment, since the Marketplace has not come to them at all. Just sayin'.

  • @Todd Brix - This is great news! I am an Indian and am looking at mainly two HTC phones, the Titan and the Radar.

    The fact that Marketplace is now available in India, is a big plus in making a decision to buy a Windows Phone.

    Thank you Microsoft!

    However, would you request you to provide an answer to satish_appasani's query. If I buy a new Windows Phone, install Zune on Windows 7, will I need to tweak the registry? I hope not, though that in itself is not too much of a hassle.

    Just need a reassurance that everything will work right 'out of the box' as soon as I start using the phone.

    Waiting for the Titan's India launch now! Thanks Todd.. You've brought welcome news!

  • yeah really, the marketplace needs to be in more countries

  • Vril
    7 Posts

    @Microsoft - there are over 200 countries in the world, you only support 40 or so!

    Android, Bada and iTunes support much more countries than Microsoft!

  • abm
    268 Posts

    +1 @Geoff, http://billing.microsoft.com > Edit personal information and you cannot change the country!

    Also, what about the Zune pass, is it US only? IMO, its mandatory to bring Zune pass with marketplace and there should be equality of service in all markets. Like 10 free songs to everyone (not only-US!).

  • I note that it is still not possible to change the country of residence setting in my Zune/Marketplace account, nor is it possible to delete the account and start over. Some of us do move around, you know.

    The "workaround" given by Microsoft Support personnel is to create another Windows LiveID and link it to another Zune account (which will also continue to live on after my death, since it can never be deleted). I thought the whole point of having a Windows LiveID is that it represents my online identity and brings everything together in one place.

  • Does this mean Market place can be accessed in India through Zune software on PC? I guess for Zune software to show market place when the System's location is set to India, it requires to add the country initials to some key in Windows registry.

    Otherwise, i am able to access Indian Market place through web and phone since the release of Mango update.

  • abm
    268 Posts

    @kiddakaAP, I got an HTC surround updated on Mango. AFAIK, HTC surround was the first phone which gets this update. Are you connecting it to Zune? Try resetting to factory defaults then connect to Zune.

  • what would make sense is to give the devs. access to the average keywords used when for their type of app

  • I wish i could get the mango update for my HTC Surround