A handful of weeks ago Unity opened up early beta access for apps on the Windows store, enabling developers to try out the tools available. We were all wondering just when the company would open up the beta program and cover Windows Phone 8 development. That time has arrived, folks. It has been announced on the Unity blog that version 4 of the engine now covers Windows Phone 8.
Developers are urged to crack on with testing the engine and preview Unity 4 for Windows Phone. Should developers jump aboard the Unity train completely, they'll be able to get prepared for game development across Microsoft's Windows ecosystem. So how does one participate in the beta program? You're required to register over on the Unity website. The program consists of two parts:
- Participants can discuss issues, ask questions, give feedback to Unity engineers and report bugs via the mailing list (note that this can result in significant email traffic)
- Windows Phone 8 beta builds, info on how to get started and all other relevant information is hosted on the beta site
It's also worth noting that Windows Phone 8 support isn't yet at a mature level, so bugs and performance issues are to be expected. Existing games can be ported to Windows Phone 8 using the alpha / beta builds of Unity and a two month trial license key will unlock platform support in the Unity toolset. Projects developed with the trial license are watermarked and are not for commercial release. Baby steps, folks.
When can we expect to see Unity 4 released for Windows Phone 8? It's stated that the company is working hard to get version 4.2 shipped, which will be followed closely by the support for Microsoft's mobile platform. We haven't gone over everything in the blog post, so be sure to head on over to Unity to read more on the beta access.
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Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.