Race to Market Challenge

Remember: The Race to Market Challenge is On!

by Joey deVilla on August 24, 2009

Last month, I posted a video announcing the launch of the Race to Market Challenge, a competition that challenges you to add some Windows Phone applications to our up-and-coming Marketplace and compete for one of four grand prizes: developer editions of a Surface table.

There’s a new video out, and I’m posting it as a little reminder for you would-be mobile developers, Windows Phone is a great way to get in on the ground floor of the world of mobile application development and win prizes at the same time:

I’ll be posting articles about how to access useful data and features on Windows Phone, including the Pocket Outlook Object Model (POOM, which gives you access to things like contact information) and using the GPS to get the user’s location.

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

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Windows Mobile Case Study: Porting Amplitude to WinMo

by Joey deVilla on August 2, 2009

HTC phone with Amplitude on screen (simulated)

The Windows Mobile Blog points to an MSDN article covering how Amplitude, an application for the iPhone, was ported to Windows Mobile.

Here’s a quick description of Amplitude, which is developed by Gripwire, a mobile and social app company based in Seattle, courtesy of the Windows Mobile Blog:

Amplitude picks up any sound in a user’s surroundings through the microphone and then amplifies the sound, rendering it into a rich graphical representation on the device. Amplitude can be used to amplify any sounds, such as human or animal heartbeats, that usually wouldn’t be picked up by the human ear. Amplitude provides a cool user interface featuring an oscilloscope that allows users to view and visually quantify, signal voltages, as you can see the volume of the sound that you are listening to.

The MSDN article on the Amplitude porting project covers a lot of ground, including:

Whether you’re thinking of expanding your iPhone application to other platforms or starting a new Windows Mobile app project, you’ll find this case study packed with useful information and links. I’m going to expand on some of the topics covered in the article in future posts on this blog.

And don’t forget – there’s the Race to Market Challenge, in which you’re automatically entered whenever you submit a mobile app to Windows Marketplace for Mobile. Here’s a quick reminder of what Race to Market is all about:

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This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.

The Race to Market Challenge

Here’s a quick little video that explains what the just-announced Race to Market challenge is all about:

If you’ve been thinking about developing for Windows Mobile, now’s the time! We’re now accepting submissions of applications for Windows Marketplace for Mobile, the on-phone store where people with Windows Mobile phones can buy and install mobile applications easily. Better still, we’re making it a contest – submit your Windows Mobile app between now and 11:59 p.m. on December 31st and you’ll automatically be entered in the Race to Market Challenge where you’ll have a chance to win one of 4 Surface tables (developer edition, of course) like the one pictured below with the dashing Developer Evangelist…

surface_pdc

…along with a lot of online marketing and promotion for your application and a really cool trophy.

Winning applications will fall into one of these categories:

  • Most downloaded
  • Most valuable (where “value” is the number of downloads multiplied by the price)
  • Most useful, as judged by a Microsoft panel
  • Most playful, as judged by a Microsoft panel

The Race to Market Challenge runs from now until December 31st, and the sooner you get started, the more likely you shot at one of the grand prized. For full details about the contest, visit mobilethisdeveloper.com.

Getting Started with Windows Mobile Development

Between now and the end of the contest, I’ll be posting articles on Windows Mobile development and the Race to Market Challenge. In the meantime, here are some tips that should help you get started.

What You Need

Here’s a snippet from an earlier article of mine that shows you what you need in order to get started with Windows Mobile development. In order to build an application for Windows Mobile 6, you’ll need the following things:

Visual Studio 2008, Professional Edition or higher
visual_studio_2008_pro
This is the development environment. It’s not the only one that you can use to develop Windows Mobile apps, but it’s the one we’re using.

You can also use Visual Studio 2005 – if you do so, Standard Edition or higher will do. If you don’t have Visual Studio, you can download a trial version of Visual Studio 2008.
 

The Windows Mobile 6 SDKs
gear_icon
 
The Windows Mobile 6 SDKs contain the templates for building Windows Mobile 6 projects and emulators for various Windows mobile phones.

There are two such SDKs to choose from:

  • The Standard SDK. The general rule is that if the device doesn’t have a touch screen, its OS is Windows Mobile 6 Standard, and this is the SDK for developing for it.
  • The Professional SDK. The general rule is that if the device has a touch screen, its OS is Windows Mobile 6 Professional, and this is the SDK for developing for it.

    I recommend downloading both SDKs. You never know where you’ll deploy! 

  • .NET Compact Framework 3.5 Redistributable
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    The .NET Compact Framework 3.5 Redistributable is the version of the .NET framework for mobile devices. It only needs to be sent to the device once.
    A Windows Mobile 6 Device
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    You can get by in the beginning with just the emulators, but you’ll eventually want to try out your app on a real phone. I’m using my phone, a Palm Treo Pro.

    As the saying goes, “In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; in practice, there is.”

    The mobile device syncing utility that works with your operating system
    windows_mobile_device_center_icon
    If you’ve got a Windows Mobile 6 device, you’ll need the application that connects your mobile phone to your OS:
  • For Windows 7 and Vista, use Windows Mobile Device Center.
  • For Windows XP and Server 2003, use ActiveSync.
  • Previous Articles on Windows Mobile Development

    Here are links to my earlier articles on Windows Mobile development:

    I’ll be posting more soon, but these should help you get up and running in the meantime.

    If you’ve got any questions or comments about Windows Mobile development or the Race to Market Challenge, feel free to drop me a line or leave a note in the comments!

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