I was fortunate enough to be allowed to be a part of the Microsoft Early Acceptance for Marketplace.
So far, I have submitted ports of my Simple Flash Cards and Mood Ring apps that I had created previously for iPhone and Android.
First pass through, they both failed because I did not include a Tile for when the app is pinned to the Home screen (they could stand to make this a little more obvious, but that one is totally on me).
Mood Ring also was failed on two (2) other points:
- Hitting the Back button from the first screen should always exit the app, and
- Hitting the Back button on any screen must return you to the previous screen.
Now, I can think of legit reasons to not do one or both of these. For Mood Ring, I didn’t think it very useful for a user to go back and look at all of their past moods – but that movement within the app should always be forward.
Microsoft apparently thought otherwise.
Anyway, none of these failing issues were huge stumbling blocks and within ten to fifteen minutes new versions were re-submitted.
With luck these two apps should be approved in the imminent future.
I’ve just started playing around with the Windows Phone 7 SDK. Here are some of my initial thoughts:
- The Windows Phone 7 UX / UI tools make what’s available on Android and Blackberry look lame by comparison (Android’s UI tools: slim; Blackberry’s: none). In fact, I would even go as far to say that Microsoft Expression Blend is a more powerful design tool that Apple’s Interface Builder.
- The overall UI itself is taking me some getting used to. It’s a little on the spare side for my tastes.
- The simulator is rock solid. Love the fact that I can compile and test without restarting the simulator each time, and even if I DO have to start the simulator each time, it takes only seconds to start and not minutes (** cough cough ** android ** cough ** blackberry ** cough ** cough **).
I’m still wading through the documentation and working through the labs, but I have to say my initial impression is… very favorable.
I have yet to do anything substantive (create an HTTP connection, start a thread, download an image, cache / persist data, etc.). What I see so far is causing me to rethink whether Microsoft may yet have a chance in the “phone wars.”