With WP 7.5 Mango devices already rolling out around the world, like in Japan, Russia and France, it was only a matter of time before developers would be able to submit an update to their apps to work with the latest version of Windows Phone. As announced by Todd Brix on the official Windows Phone Developer Blog, you may now submit your applications to the Windows Phone Mango marketplace. For developers that are submitting updates to their existing apps that run on WP 7.0 the normal caveats apply; existing users with 7.0 devices will not receive the new functionality that comes with Mango-compatible version of your app, but they will be able to continue using the app as it is.
Unfortunately, as we've already known, this is going to be an annoyance for many of our hard-working developers who will want to update their existing apps to WP 7.5, and still update their apps for WP 7.0 users as well. Thankfully, by the end of October, that problem should be all but vanquished. The app submission process will be getting a nice change to provide developers with a dual-update path on their existing apps, meaning that they'll not be limited to adding features only for Mango device owners, but will now have a way to keep supporting their existing 7.0 users.
To help distinguish app feature-sets from 7.0 and 7.5 versions within the marketplace, a small text overlay has been created to be added to screenshots for all apps with a 7.5 upgrade path (shown above). Hopefully, this will help clear some of the confusion that users will have as they browse through app screenshots to see features that they can't access on their 7.0-based devices.
While it's nice that they'll be making this dual-update process available for developers, it's a shame that it will be so long before it arrives in October. We can't expect them to make everything so easy on us, can we?
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