While we continue to impatiently approach Nokia's event this coming week where we'll hopefully see what the Finnish manufacturer has to offer in terms of Windows Phone Apollo hardware, news has unearthed today surrounding the AppCampus (, which was set up earlier in the year.

The joint venture between Microsoft, Aalto University (Finland) and Nokia was established at a cost of $23 million to promote quality app development on Windows Phone. AppCampus has revealed that it has distributed the first $1 million of its budget on 36 developers out of a total of 900 submissions.

At an average of $30,000 per-app, the joint venture will be looking at individual investments between $25,000 and $80,000 over the course of the programme. TechCrunch were informed by Pekka Sivonen, head of AppCampus, that apps developed through the programme are expected to start being released in October. Said apps will run exclusively on Windows Phone, as well as "other Nokia platforms", for the first six months.

Sivonen continues to explain the joint venture is currently searching for its next batch of startups to get ready in the new year. 

"We’re making close to 700 investments in the next three years so I would heavily encourage people to submit their best ideas. This is the time to jump in."

Due to competitive reasons, AppCampus hasn't disclosed a list of the startups that have already received investment from the programme, but Sivonen states that backed projects range from games to productivity apps, and cover a wide range of geographies.

Two apps that were unveiled are enterprise / productivity focused:

  • Sihti - a mobile job-hunting app, which enables users to search through position openings and subsequently send in their resumes using the Windows platform.
  • Modz - enables children to measure blood sugar levels and help manage them, which is a perfect solution due to majority of kids owning a smartphone.

It's positive to see Nokia and Microsoft back such useful ideas and turn them into real solutions for the Windows Phone community. It's also an exciting time for consumers to be heading for Nokia's unveil of Windows Phone hardware as well as seeing what kind of projects are currently in development by talented startups.

Source: TechCrunch; thanks, Laura, for the heads up!