That’s right: the last touches have been put on the Windows Phone 7 OS and it’s now in “RTM”, Release to Manufacturing. Here’s what Terry Myerson wrote on the Windows Phone Blog:
Windows Phone 7 is the most thoroughly tested mobile platform Microsoft has ever released. We had nearly ten thousand devices running automated tests daily, over a half million hours of active self-hosting use, over three and a half million hours of stress test passes, and eight and a half million hours of fully automated test passes. We’ve had thousands of independent software vendors and early adopters testing our software and giving us great feedback. We are ready.
Next Up: Developer Tools
We’ve had over 300,000 downloads of the Windows Phone Developer Tools in their CTP (Community Technology Preview) and Beta states, and we’re racing towards RTM. The final version of the tools will be available on Thursday, September 16th, and yes, they’ll be available free of charge.
In the meantime, download the tools and start working on those apps!
And Then: Marketplace (and App Certification)
Windows Phone Marketplace is where users will buy your apps, which means that once you’ve written and tested your apps, it’s time to submit it for certification. The requirements for getting an app certified for Marketplace, including what’s allowed and not allowed in an app, are clearly specified in the Windows Phone 7 Application Certification Requirements [PDF, 513K]. Download it and get familiar with the Marketplace policies.
Your Turn: What Should You Do?
I’ll close with the words of Brandon Watson, Director, Developer Experience and one of the guys on the WP7 team:
Register at the marketplace today
Finish your application or game using the Beta tools
Download the final Windows Phone Developer Tools when they are released on September 16th
Recompile your app or game using the final tools
Have your XAP ready for ingestion into the marketplace in early October when it opens
The final tools will likely have some minor breaking changes from the Beta tools, so developers may have to fix some bugs that arise. The final tools will also include several highly requested Silverlight controls which will make it even easier for developers to deliver high quality Windows Phone 7 experiences. Also in the September 16th final release, the panorama, pivot and Bing maps controls will all be available to drop into applications.
This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.