Microsoft says Windows Phone 7 Series Marketplace will be “objective”

As news came out of Microsoft MIX10 that application deployment on Windows Phone 7 Series will be limited to only the Marketplace, question marks started lighting up on what side-effects this might have on third-party application developments on the platform. I took the chance to clear up some of those concerns in a meeting with a Microsoft representative today.

An obvious point of concern that stems from this announcement is the fact that Microsoft will inherit more “control” over what applications can be deployed to end-users and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to draw a comparison to the Apple App Store who also inherit a similar “power”.

To avoid falling into the same trap Apple is now continuously drawing criticism for “banning” applications, Microsoft insists its Marketplace is already and will be more “objective”. Like today, Microsoft will be publish criteria for WP7S developers that they claim will not only guide developers on what’s “allowed” but also allow them to test themselves if they will pass the certification process.

Furthermore Microsoft states if applications “meet the criteria” they won’t deny any applications on subjective grounds. For example, even though WP7S has a strong emphasis on good application design and Microsoft will publish style guides for developers, the Marketplace certification process will not have any power to stop applications that don’t meet the guideline or, frankly, look ugly. “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” as they put it.

Finally, developers who are looking to beta test their applications to a wider audience than themselves and enterprises can look forward to changes to the Marketplace “later this spring” that will allow private distributions of applications to support both beta and enterprise scenarios. The Microsoft representative hinted at a method to “unlock” Windows Phone 7 Series devices, although not easily, but presumed will allow loading applications using a USB cable.

15 insightful thoughts

  1. Weren’t many “Windows Mobile Classic” devices locked in a similar way, but to carrier/hardware specific signatures? I think this was mainly in the US, where they have “unlimited” so they try to limit the software on their networks, and as an “incentive” to upgrade to new phones for features, which are really just software.

    Isn’t this an improved baseline?

    (I’m being optimistic, but I do know that people will be “jailbreaking” within days if it’s not)

  2. I love that its changing “later this spring” when the devices don’t even come out till “Holidays.”

    They should’ve just announced the when the marketplace is released it’ll be like that, then :p

  3. One of the processes I really appreciate from Microsoft are that they provide developers with the tools they use themselves to certify products, eg. drivers, touch hardware for Windows 7, certified Windows software, etc. Developers can test their own products themselves to ensure the products they finally submit to Microsoft will be passed. There is no “black box” of certification where the developer is left guessing whether or not their product will be accepted or rejected.

  4. Well even if there would be no sideloading option (by using a USB cable) I am pretty sure some techhead will jailbreak the devices. I’ve been playing with the SDK yesterday, and I like what I see. It’s easy to get a goodlooking UI. :)

  5. “To avoid falling into the same trap Apple is now continuously drawing criticism for “banning” applications, Microsoft insists its Marketplace is already and will be more “objective”. Like today, Microsoft will be publish criteria for WP7S developers that they claim will not only guide developers on what’s “allowed” but also allow them to test themselves if they will pass the certification process.”

    My grammar sense is tingling.

    Good job on the coverage though. I’m liking what I see more and more.

  6. Yep. Just because Microsoft claim their store will be objective… the fact still remains, “Marketplace will be the only way to get apps on Windows Phone 7 Series”.

  7. “The Microsoft representative hinted at a method to “unlock” Windows Phone 7 Series devices, although not easily, but presumed will allow loading applications using a USB cable.”

    1. well if they leave the door open for it admins. sure unless they have to have the apps. signed by ms. i now can see why they left out user serviceable sd cards which will probably be allowed in the future

  8. Microsoft isn’t any stranger to having partners galore in the telephone enterprise, but its lineup of producers for the upcoming, surprisingly promising Windows Cellphone 7 launch isn’t any much less impressive. After loads of rumoring, Microsoft has confirmed that Dell and HTC shall be making Home windows Cellphone 7 phones, along with ASUS, LG, and Samsung who had already been confirmed. All of these companies should have their stamp on hardware by the end of the 12 months, with the launch of the OS nonetheless vaguely slated for the “holidays” We have little question that each one five producers can build some compelling, sexy hardware, however we’re significantly enthused to see Dell actually moving into the sport after the impressive Streak and that drool worthy leak a short while back. learn extra at http://www.wp7forum.com followers group.

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