Microsoft will help you build, certify your app
As we continue to learn more about the upcoming Windows Mobile app store called Skymarket, it now appears that Microsoft will help developers certify their programs.
Over at InnovateOn.com, Microsoft is offering help through four stages of app development: Learn, build, test and market.
Developers will get tools and resources for building their applications, 5 hours of free e-mail tech support, up to $400 worth of testing and complimentary code signing, said to be worth another $400.
For us non-binary folks, this should help separate the wheat from the chaff and mean better applications overall.
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What Microsoft should do to help Windows Mobile development really take off is add WinMo development support to the Express editions of Visual Studio, or at the very least, to the Standard edition as was the case with VS 2005. If they want to keep certain quality standards, then MS can get picky with the quality of applications they certify, but requiring the purchase of Visual Studio 2008 Professional just discourages many developers, especially beginners from diving into Windows Mobile development.
You can develop for Windows Mobile without purchasing any software. I wrote up the instructions on how to do this: http://www.codeproject.com/KB/mobile/WiMoSansVS.aspx The drawback with this solution is you don't have an integrated debugger and must installed fallback on a free tracer.