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Microsoft has some aggressive plans to bring reluctant developers on board

WP Central

Nokia has been doing an outstanding job rebuilding not only their own brand, but that of Microsoft's mobile division too. But is hardware enough? Not at all (as many have pointed out). We've previously reported on Nokia and Microsoft investing €18 million on an app development program in Finland, but we'll need much more to combat the skeptical outsider comments and the lack of developer support from the big names - Rovio being a perfect example with Angry Birds (though they have since confirmed it is coming).

Cue the software giant. Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet has revealed some interesting presentation slides that show how Microsoft plans to tackle the above problems. The slides all point at a $10 million campaign over three years to round up developers and companies that aren't supporting the platform yet.

WP Central

Ensuring that the quality bar remains high with apps by driving the message that highlights built-in features of Windows Phone over bolt ons (comparing with Android). It would appear from the first slide that Google's OS would be targeted in campaigns. The second slide simply states that the company would plan to bridge the gaps in the top 25 apps on other platforms. Pandora being another good example.

The remaining two slides illustrate the need to promote top apps and exclusives consistently, while actually capitalising on the exclusivity. What's interesting to note is the plan for offers to be used to drive platform awareness with ESPN sweepstakes, Xbox Companion and Live giveaways, and Univision sweepstakes as examples. For gamers, "price games at parity with iPhone" will be music to the ears with some titles on Windows Phone costing more than on iOS.

Source: ZDNet

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Reader comments

Microsoft has some aggressive plans to bring reluctant developers on board

41 Comments

Apps needs to be the the focus of MS going forward if they want Wp7/8 to succeed in the marketplace. 
It is true that we dont need 500,000 apps in the marketplace as people always say.  The issue that is holding back the wp platform is the lack of popular apps vs ios and android.  People heavily invested in apps and if they move platforms, they will either have to purchase the app again or outright not use that app since wp7 doesnt have many of the popular apps.  The popular apps that WP7 have now are typically skimped version of the ios and droid versions. 
App support and being able to have apps on the platform released at the same time will be very important going forward.  Hopefully, MS can sway some developers this way with some cold hard $$$. 
 

Agreed. MS also needs to address the carrier issues. Win Phone 7/8 will be frowned upon for updates, even though Droid frequently orphans phones and has major OS delivery delays.

I think with Windows 8 and Phone 8 we'll see a huge developer influx. MS has worked really hard to anchor Phone to Windows 8. Many of the apps developed for the windows 8 market will run on phones as well.
Also, I think it's hilarious that "bump it" is pictured as a "sought after" app. That thing is garbage on both iOS and Android.
 

For the companies that do have apps, another thing is that many do not list Windows Phone as a supported platform on their website (sometimes in the fine print, but often they didn't bother to update their site graphics after adding a WP app). App promotions are everywhere these days, and it is easy to assume apps aren't available for Windows Phone when it is not mentioned in the company of iPhone and Android.

I just hope Live branded games don't be invaded by half baked games for the sake of cheap prices, I like the weekly game, don't hope the flood gates, please.

I'd like to see MORE of the live branded games in the Market. I don't mind paying more than a $1 for those, but we need more of them at a diverse range of prices.

I'm very pleased with this.  I especially like that they are acknowledging their failure to promote exclusives in the past.  It shows that they are learning, and are working their hardest to not repeat past mistakes.

I like the slide about pushing for mainstream pricing. A lot of our apps cost A LOT more than their equivilants on the other platforms.

Huh. Promote exclusive apps? You mean like the ones Microsoft published itself and then ported to iOS and Android. (Halo Waypoint, My Xbox, Kinectimals)

I was in at&t today to look at salesmen's lumias. I heard 4 different reps complain about two things. no Pandora was the biggie. They didn't care about slacker or Zune, just kept saying "no Pandora, no happy". The other thing was the placement of the lock screen button, but that just take getting used to.

Then you should have guided them to MetroRadio. Sure, it's not an "official" app, but it's Pandora none the less. You log in with your Pandora credentials and well, like I said, it's Pandora. Nice interface and works great.

You didn't state if you were a WP owner but it definietly would have helped if you could have pointed them to the 2-3 (maybe more at this point) "Pandora" clients that are already out on WP. 
Sad thing is that when Pandora gets off of their high-horse and releases an offical app it will only have half the functionality of clients that are already out. I'm guessing these "reps" don't know about  app discovery options either (like App Flow, etc.) if they did they probably would have found the "Pandora" clients by now...

Im a loyal MS i have almost everything from xbox, pc to zune, win phone But now Im starting to think abandoning ms because of the apps. The world lives under apps. But i havent seen anyone holding a winphone

So, you're abandoning me because of the apps (strange comment regarding what it's said on this article) or because you haven't seen anyone holding a phone ? :)

What flawed reasoning here its already been found that apps don't matter to smartphone users. I see at least an HD7,radar or lumia 710 a day.

Pandora I never heard of it until I got wp7. What I seen of it I prefer my Zune. The third party apps do a good job filling in the void with the nice interface. But what I see in the recent update iHeart radio seems just at good.

IHeartRadio is much better than Pandora in my opinion.  They just got Pandora-like Internet radio and it's pretty damn good.

Yeah, I hate zynga. I heard they got hella sued for ripping off other games almost exactly. I hope Microsoft or Nokia can step in and do something like they did to rovio

Not having played it so really don't know, but what is it that gets everyone raving about this game? From what I've heard its pretty basic? Does it in any way compare to Duudle?

Just win lose or draw for your phone against a friend. Nothing more. Its amazing though and I wish we had it but it's too late now. Gotta worry about the next one now and move on

Windows phone needs the popular apps as soon as that is over. The really difference between Windows Phone and android is Windows Phone is smoother,snappy,better battery life and less fragmentation .I am 100% Windows Phone fanboi .hope this works out before it's too late 

The part about quantity and quality confuses me. Are they talking about raising the quality of apps with less quantity? Or vice verse? 

MS completely and utterly stuffed up with Xbox companion and Kinectimals. We're at a crucial juncture where we need as many exclusives as we can to drive people to the platform. People should look at WP7 and say "I wish my phone did that!" instead of "meh, I have that too". The "3 screens" policy is a great one... it shouldn't be "3 screens.... oh and ios & android will all have it too, so don't bother switching"

i think the problem is this
microsoft has made a lockdown of there dev platform
what year is it 2012 and we do not have acess to custom shaders and true hardware float point math, as thay have on android or iphone
that is why the better quality in apps and games
allso we are only allow to use 90mb of memory for our apps and games
and 125mb disk space
 
take some games on the othere platforms, 400mb to 1.3gb battlefield
allso you can use all the memory you whant ,
but is stead microsoft and nokia put a lumia 610 phone with a 6 year old chip 800mhz on the market with 256mb
thay have lost to iphone and android and trying to get the verry low contryes on board , and this is all good
but these low users have no internet connection
and can not buy a game or app if the price is over 3 dollars
so it kill the developer
and these new devices we are not allow to show cool stuff
70 % of all xbox live games are made in house at microsoft
thay just by the graphics and sound and consept from the real game makers
thay do not whant to publish there game on windows phone platform
why i do not know,,
and allso why is there free xbox live games , what does this do to the small developers trying to create games , thay can not compete with the brand xbox live
and that knows all the developers from othere platforms
that is why thay stay away
if you what xboxlive on a phone , why not delever a real xbox live game
the power is here , all thay have to do is to look at android horse power phone
and take the chip set and make a HIGH END DUALCORE PHONE
and then tahy will win, the game that everyone is talking about has to come foward
my point of view
 

Regarding the top apps - it's not only about having them, but also getting them updated. Adobe Acrobat can be given as example. For what I know, there is still no alternative for this software and it hasn't been updated even once since released in October 2010. It's getting somewhat embarrassing...

How does someone suggest a game to Xbox Live?

There is a particular game that is very addictive and I believe would be a Winner as an XboxLive game.
ManboloGames developed MEON the game and I had it on my WM6.5 - I couldn't leave it alone!
I have contacted the developers a couple times in the past and they have not considered porting the game to WindowsPhone, but with this new push and ease of porting becoming available I hope someone with more knowledge than I contact @ManboloGames and make some headway to getting this fantastic, mind boggling game to WP7.