Microsoft: NES emulator in WP7 Marketplace breaks IP law

Well, that answers that.

In the meeting with Microsoft, the ChevronWP7 team evidently brought up the issue of emulators, specifically the NES one floating around, which we took for a spin a few weeks ago.

The answer from Brandon Watson, Director of Developer Experience for WP7, should have been expected: unless there is a legal way to host and distribute those ROMs, it's a violation of IP law. The answer should be a no-brainer really and Microsoft would be putting themselves in an odd position with Nintendo if they were to allow such an app to be distributed. Heck, Microsoft is hesitant about adding a screen shot tool because of these issues, that should tell you something.

Still, here's to homebrew and sideloading!

Source: @BrandonWatson

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007 when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and for some reason, watches. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.

  • When I get the time, I'll definitely unlock my Focus and try this out before the update. Playing a Woodman and Bubbleman's stages on a smartphone is something of a tradition, along with the near-instant realization that touch screen controls make the reality of playing Megaman 2 on the go far less fun than the dream.
  • You could probably still beat metal man
  • I don't even know how this is still a question, MS won't say, ya no problem, and then get sued like crazy over IP violations etc. Homebrew is ok as long as it's about free apps that don't break some legal copyright/trademark and so on. The emulator itself probably doesn't but the ROMs sure as hell do.
  • 90% of the people that use homebrew app is for illegal activity. its funny to read some of the reason why its ok (i.e. i'm a developer and don't want to pay 99$ or sell my app even though MS allows up to 10 side loads without having to submit). Just reading the first reply show's what people intend to do, play/use free illegal apps, roms, and emulators. Most people think just because they spent XX dollars on a phone that they can do whatever they want with it. Yet, they have zero clue and didn't bother to read the usage guide book. Microsoft own's the WP7 OS and is just licensing it for use. They can revoke that license at any give time according to the EULA.
  • Why don't Nintendo just release an official emulator of their own & sell the ROMS in the Market Place and make a bit of money on them?
  • But would Microsoft allow it? They do own a gaming company (xbox live) and the wp7 is centered around xbox live. would they willing allow Nintendo to make a profit on there gaming phone?
  • They probably would if they were given a cut of ROM sales, just like they are with app sales - then Nintendo would be exactly like any other WP7 developer selling paid apps, and Microsoft would profit from their app sales. In addition, being the only mobile phone platform which would allow you to legally play old Nintendo games would give phone sales a huge boost, increasing other app sales, etc - the benefits would be huge outside of Nintendo app sales.Obviously Nintendo would never do this. Then they'd essentially make WP7 compete directly with a DS. Why buy little Timmy a cellphone and a DS for his birthday when he can play his pokemanz on the cellphone?