Microsoft paying developers to build mobile apps

In an effort to compete against Apple and Google in the mobile app market, Microsoft is paying developers to build mobile apps for Windows Phone 7, according to Businessweek. "The company [Microsoft] is providing financial incentives ranging from free tools and test handsets to funds for software development and marketing," said Todd Brix, a senior director at Microsoft who works with app developers. In some cases, Microsoft is providing revenue guarantees, and will make up the difference if apps don’t sell as well as expected, he said." 

Microsoft says that to win customers over they need to have a large number of apps when the Windows Phone 7 handsets are released later this year. Kevin Burden, an analyst at ABI Research, thinks most developers are reluctant to spend the time building apps for Windows Phone 7 because they are not sure it will lure in enough customers to recoup their development costs.

Though Brix declined to comment on the amount of money Microsoft is spending on the program he said, "We are investing a lot to attract developers big and small to Windows Phone 7 to let them understand what the opportunity is and provide as many resources as we can to help them be successful on our platform."

The incentive terms are confidential but according to five individuals, Microsoft approached them and offered financial incentives in exchanged for having apps ready at or near the launch of Windows Phone 7. Since Windows Phone 7 is vastly different from its previous mobile operating, systems none of the old apps will work. Currently there are only 246 apps ready for Windows Phone 7 according to ABI Research compared to Apple's 225,000 and Google's 65,000 available apps.

At Microsoft's WPC Steve Ballmer said, "On the phone side we missed a generation with Windows Mobile. We really did miss almost a release cycle, but Windows Phone 7 which we had a chance to debut at the Mobile World Congress earlier this year has received really quite remarkable reviews." Microsoft needs Windows Phone 7 to be a success to remain competitive in the mobile market especially after the failure of the Kin.

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"Desparate" "Never Catch Up" Blah Blah Blah...

I find the lack of knowledge of both the history and the development platform extremely silly/insane.

Apple had a LOT more apps for Macs than Windows 3.0 as well in 1990, and Windows 3.0 also was a change from previous versions of Windows that ran in Real Mode.

If anyone thinks MS can't catch up, they don't know their history very well. They also don't understand what made Windows 3.x skyrocket, which was the development tools and platform.

Developing for Win 3.x was extremely easy, and far more complete than Mac, UNIX, etc because of the unified platform with a truly centralized driver model. No longer did people have to write a printer driver for XYZ brand printer when designing an application (or stick to Postscript only) and they didn't have to worry if the users had a Monochrome display, VGA, or EGA even. They had cheap and free tools like Visual Basic and the MS SDKs, where on platforms like OS/2 2.x it cost $1500 for an SDK kit just to write a freaking application for IBM's precious OS.

Win7Phone has an amazing development platform, that makes Objective-C/Cocoa and Google Java both look old, cumbersome and slow.

The Silverlight portion of the development platform for Win7Phone is not only, Visual Basic-Like simple, but also significantly more advanced in terms of a modern development framework. For example, unlike Objective-C/Cocoa which is Object Based, Silverlight and .NET on Win7Phone is truly Object Oriented.

With Silverlight and a tool like Expression Blend, even a graphic designer can write applications for the phone by doing even less than is require to create a Flash animation.

Then you add in XNA, which there are already 1200 games available for XBox Live, and most will require only a change in a few lines of code or a recompile to run on the Win7Phone.

The final 'jewel' in MS's favor is the hardware requirments, and a lot of people seem to forget this part. Win7Phones require a DX9.0c capable GPU. This means that 3D gaming is rather easy for the device with XNA and DX9 support, in addition to future support for OpenGL 2.x , etc.

Win7Phone could be crap, and people could hate it, but people under estimating Microsoft on this is crazy stupid, as I have seen things like this happen time after time again.

(People said Windows would never catch up to Mac, Gem/Atari, Amiga - they also said MS would never be competitive in the Wordpressing or Spreadsheet markets - they also said MS would never be competitive to Novell in the personal networking markets - they also said MS would never catch up to Novell in the server market - and the list goes on and on and on...)

Count them out after the product fails, until then, this really is something for MS to lose, not something for Google or Apple to win. Microsoft has the advantage in terms of hardware, platform, and development tools, which is saying something considering iOS and Android have both existed far longer than Silverlight and even XNA.

You know, I wish there were more sensible comments like this rather than fanboys jumping in without even knowing what they are talking about

LoveThePenguin said,
Sad, very sad. I would pity them if they weren't the most evil corporation in the world.

They aren't, Apple are, I guess you have been ignoring the news lately?

lordcanti86 said,
246 apps seems shoddy until you realize that the tools for building these apps just went beta this week

Until you realize that it's just an estimate made by a company that has no idea what it's talking about. You can't submit apps to the Marketplace until August, so where did they get that number from?

This article is misleading as Apple and Google also give away incentives to developers such as free development kits. Google recently gave away free Sprint HTC EVO's at a recent developers conference. So I don't want to hear any BS targeting Microsoft for using the same tactics that have become common place in the industry.

WJrandon said,
This article is misleading as Apple and Google also give away incentives to developers such as free development kits

That's not an incentive for Google. Everything they do is free. That's what differentiates them from the crowd. Additionally, they aren't likely to charge for SDK's when the OS itself is free as in beer.

WJrandon said,
So I don't want to hear any BS targeting Microsoft for using the same tactics that have become common place in the industry.

Name one other os developer giving monetary incentives to app developers... Ye I thought not. Stop bashing an article simply because it doesn't praise microsoft, Take a reality check dude.
By the way, do you think MS would give away free dev kits if they had the iOS's market share? Not likely. It's all about lockin with MS.

Remind me again how much the microsoft tax adds to the tco of MS's phones? Not to mention you probably wont get new versions for free (not patches, new versions!).

As a developer myself, microsoft's phone platform has zero attraction - As of yet unknown user base size. Will they stop developing it if it fails like the kin because that would be a lot of development resources which could have been better spent on iOS or android wasted. If they're giving developers monetary incentives, then they must be desperate, and that is certainly a put off.

Edited by LoveThePenguin, Jul 14 2010, 7:52pm :

LoveThePenguin said,

That's not an incentive for Google. Everything they do is free. That's what differentiates them from the crowd. Additionally, they aren't likely to charge for SDK's when the OS itself is free as in beer.


Name one other os developer giving monetary incentives to app developers... Ye I thought not. Stop bashing an article simply because it doesn't praise microsoft, Take a reality check dude.
By the way, do you think MS would give away free dev kits if they had the iOS's market share? Not likely. It's all about lockin with MS.

Remind me again how much the microsoft tax adds to the tco of MS's phones? Not to mention you probably wont get new versions for free (not patches, new versions!).

As a developer myself, microsoft's phone platform has zero attraction - As of yet unknown user base size. Will they stop developing it if it fails like the kin because that would be a lot of development resources which could have been better spent on iOS or android wasted. If they're giving developers monetary incentives, then they must be desperate, and that is certainly a put off.


The problem with Android is that it isn't free as in beer, it's free as in puppies. Sure, the OS itself is free. However, the premium Google apps that come on 95% of Android phones (YouTube, Maps, GMail, etc.) aren't included with Android and must be licensed separately from Google for a fee (in order to reimburse Google for lost ad revenue). Also, OEMs pretty much have to handle software R&D and support on their own rather than farming that out to someone else, which also ads to the cost. When you boil it all down, the total cost to produce a WP7 or an Android device aren't that different.

And wasn't Google the company offering revenue sharing options if OEMs put Android on their devices? Isn't that basically the same thing?

Edited by lordcanti86, Jul 14 2010, 7:37pm :

lordcanti86 said,

The problem with Android is that it isn't free as in beer, it's free as in puppies. Sure, the OS itself is free. However, the premium Google apps that come on 95% of Android phones (YouTube, Maps, GMail, etc.) aren't included with Android and must be licensed separately from Google for a fee (in order to reimburse Google for lost ad revenue).

Huh? All those apps come as standard with any android phone lol. There is zero cost to the user.

lordcanti86 said,

Also, OEMs pretty much have to handle software R&D and support on their own rather than farming that out to someone else,

Some OEM's opt to develop their own user interface layer on top of android, but that is completely optional. It can be compiled as a single image and used across multiple phones. No R&D costs apply. Chip/hardware (ARM etc) manufacturers contribute drivers/code to the mainline kernel as per usual, so there are no more costs associated with android than there are to deploy windows mobile.

lordcanti86 said,

which also ads to the cost. When you boil it all down, the total cost to produce a WP7 or an Android device aren't that different.

They are quite different in terms of tco, and completely different in terms of freedom to customise the experience (HTC Sense UI) for their customers, something that is all but impossible on MS OS's.

lordcanti86 said,

And wasn't Google the company offering revenue sharing options if OEMs put Android on their devices? Isn't that basically the same thing?

Not at all. Revenue sharing with OEM's is not the same thing as bribing app developers. MS offers the same deals effectively with their OEM discounts.

What's wrong with a company paying developers to port their apps over? Developers don't have deep pockets so they won't put their work into a platform that they don't know will sell or not. It hasn't been released yet. They'll work on what platforms are currently selling. So, in order to be sure that your app store is stocked at a release of a new platform you are going to have to convince the developers somehow.

They are quite different in terms of tco, and completely different in terms of freedom to customise the experience (HTC Sense UI) for their customers, something that is all but impossible on MS OS's.

Did you forget where Sense came from?

LoveThePenguin said,

Huh? All those apps come as standard with any android phone lol. There is zero cost to the user.

Uhh...I wasn't talking about cost to the user, I was taliking about cost to the OEMs. The user pays nothing anyway (users get Bing, Zune, Office, XBL integration, and Facebook integration at no charge on WP7).

LoveThePenguin said,

Chip/hardware (ARM etc) manufacturers contribute drivers/code to the mainline kernel as per usual, so there are no more costs associated with android than there are to deploy windows mobile.

That's my point. The costs to deploy Android on handsets or WP7 on handsets are about the same.

Being that you need to pay to list on the marketplace (app store), it's a good way for developers to secure that investment. Besides, it's not ALL developers that get the free devices, only the existing high profile app makers from other platforms that can bring an innovative and compelling twist to their apps on this new platform.

dotf said,
Being that you need to pay to list on the marketplace (app store), it's a good way for developers to secure that investment. Besides, it's not ALL developers that get the free devices, only the existing high profile app makers from other platforms that can bring an innovative and compelling twist to their apps on this new platform.

Existing high profile developers will get theirs first, and rightly deserve precidence, but I've heard that there are going to be thousands of devices being sent out. So, some smaller firms and individuals will get some but there won't be enough for everyone.

I like the fee to be listed. It provides a very insignificant barrier to entry so you'll be much more likely to see apps made by people who are commited to putting out a good app and not those who were bored one weekend and threw one together.

Bengal34 said,

I like the fee to be listed. It provides a very insignificant barrier to entry so you'll be much more likely to see apps made by people who are commited to putting out a good app and not those who were bored one weekend and threw one together.

Haha, I really think MS are doing a great job at destroying their new phone before it's even launched. I heartily commend the fee too, more developers for android

LoveThePenguin said,

Haha, I really think MS are doing a great job at destroying their new phone before it's even launched. I heartily commend the fee too, more developers for android

The only developers that the fee would chase away would be the ones that make those ****ty little apps that no one downloads that only serve to clutter the app store.

The fee really is insignificant. It's not even per app. You can release as many paid apps as you want.

dotf said,
Besides, it's not ALL developers that get the free devices, only the existing high profile app makers from other platforms that can bring an innovative and compelling twist to their apps on this new platform.

Everyone who registered on the Windows Marketplace for Mobile and published an app for Windows Mobile before June 1, 2010 will get a phone.

Second, high profile app developers for other platforms will get a phone.

Third, developers who can convince the WP7 team that they are developing something worthwhile will get a phone.

Phones will be sent out starting on Monday, July 19th.

It's going to be more on mocrosofts shoulders as to if the platform takes off and attracts app writers. They need to include really good stock apps to attract customers, and would it kill then to try and compete pricewise? If I see $299 subsidized windows 7 phones I'm going to have to /sigh at Microsoft.

Shadrack said,
It's going to be more on mocrosofts shoulders as to if the platform takes off and attracts app writers. They need to include really good stock apps to attract customers, and would it kill then to try and compete pricewise? If I see $299 subsidized windows 7 phones I'm going to have to /sigh at Microsoft.

That's all up to the OEMs. However, due to how high the minimum requirements are they won't be cheap but I don't see why you wouldn't be able to find one at the same price point or a little lower than the iPhone. You'll be able to find cheaper Android devices though.

Bengal34 said,

That's all up to the OEMs. However, due to how high the minimum requirements are they won't be cheap but I don't see why you wouldn't be able to find one at the same price point or a little lower than the iPhone. You'll be able to find cheaper Android devices though.

Does that mean that Microsoft will be more directly competing with the iPhone than Android, with Android mopping up the lower end of the market while Microsoft and WP7 attempts to compete with Apple and the iPhone at the higher end?

Brendando said,

Does that mean that Microsoft will be more directly competing with the iPhone than Android, with Android mopping up the lower end of the market while Microsoft and WP7 attempts to compete with Apple and the iPhone at the higher end?

Potentially. But I remember hearing an interview with an HTC rep about their lower end phones. They said that they feel people just aren't interested in low end phones. After all, the cost of the phone is going to be insignificant to the monthly fees incurred.

So why would people not want to spend the extra $50 for a phone that ran smoothly? The minimum specs are 256 mb ram, 1ghz cpu, 400x800 resolution, etc.

There are high end android phones too.

These developing tools allows you to use Visual Studio with is the most popular, easy to use and greatest supported platform for developers, and use basically the same code to compile apps that will run in Windows, Windows Phone, Xbox and even web (silverlight). This is very tempting for a developer, is like being able to make 4 apps with the work required for just one. With Apple banning flash, they are shooting themselves in the foot. Android doesn't have great developing tools and they will only do Android apps. The only quasi equivalent of MS tools is Flash, because is portable across platforms, but flash is not the easiest way to do serious applications and it has performance issues. So, I wouldn't underestimate Microsoft, since they are the only ones positioned for a full integration of mobile devices with the most popular desktop platform, with the most popular server platform, with one of the best game platforms, with the best performing web applications applet.

Charles Keledjian said,
These developing tools allows you to use Visual Studio with is the most popular, easy to use and greatest supported platform for developers, and use basically the same code to compile apps that will run in Windows, Windows Phone, Xbox and even web (silverlight). This is very tempting for a developer, is like being able to make 4 apps with the work required for just one. With Apple banning flash, they are shooting themselves in the foot. Android doesn't have great developing tools and they will only do Android apps. The only quasi equivalent of MS tools is Flash, because is portable across platforms, but flash is not the easiest way to do serious applications and it has performance issues. So, I wouldn't underestimate Microsoft, since they are the only ones positioned for a full integration of mobile devices with the most popular desktop platform, with the most popular server platform, with one of the best game platforms, with the best performing web applications applet.

As a developer working on Windows Phone 7 it seems like a lot isn't being given to the developers in regards to hardware access. You don't have access to the LED flash on phones so say goodbye to using it as a flashlight. You don't have access to the raw video feed on the phone so say goodbye to augmented reality apps as well. I know Microsoft is starting over and they have a ton of work to do but to me, not having access to the raw video feed is as big as not having any multi-tasking or any copy and paste. I used Microsoft Tag a lot during my last robotics season and what will be funny this year is that the MS tag app will be better on the iPhone since it can simply scan a tag whereas the WP7 app will have to take a still picture and then analyze the tag. Don't get me wrong, I love WP7 and the interface behind it, but the apis for developers are very limited and because of that I am limited to what I can do which should not happen as a developer.

Omen1393 said,

As a developer working on Windows Phone 7 it seems like a lot isn't being given to the developers in regards to hardware access. You don't have access to the LED flash on phones so say goodbye to using it as a flashlight. You don't have access to the raw video feed on the phone so say goodbye to augmented reality apps as well. I know Microsoft is starting over and they have a ton of work to do but to me, not having access to the raw video feed is as big as not having any multi-tasking or any copy and paste. I used Microsoft Tag a lot during my last robotics season and what will be funny this year is that the MS tag app will be better on the iPhone since it can simply scan a tag whereas the WP7 app will have to take a still picture and then analyze the tag. Don't get me wrong, I love WP7 and the interface behind it, but the apis for developers are very limited and because of that I am limited to what I can do which should not happen as a developer.


Don't you have an ongoing dialogue with MS when your working as a developer for them?
Isn't it as easy as saying: Give us access to those features cause they allow us to code better app's to the WP7, and by that the WP7 will be competitive on the market?
I mean, if blocked features hinder developers in coding something that can beat the competitor, there isn't really any point in coding on it at all.

Omen1393 said,

As a developer working on Windows Phone 7 it seems like a lot isn't being given to the developers in regards to hardware access. You don't have access to the LED flash on phones so say goodbye to using it as a flashlight. You don't have access to the raw video feed on the phone so say goodbye to augmented reality apps as well. I know Microsoft is starting over and they have a ton of work to do but to me, not having access to the raw video feed is as big as not having any multi-tasking or any copy and paste. I used Microsoft Tag a lot during my last robotics season and what will be funny this year is that the MS tag app will be better on the iPhone since it can simply scan a tag whereas the WP7 app will have to take a still picture and then analyze the tag. Don't get me wrong, I love WP7 and the interface behind it, but the apis for developers are very limited and because of that I am limited to what I can do which should not happen as a developer.

A lot of APIs just aren't done yet, like the compas. I think that once they finish the current lot, and there is desire to use other parts of the phone then they will open it up more.

Firethorne said,
Indeed. I might switch to Win Phone 7 from Android just so I can use Visual Studio instead of Eclipse for writing my own apps.

Eclipse pff! vim FTW

Charles Keledjian said,
These developing tools allows you to use Visual Studio with is the most popular, easy to use and greatest supported platform for developers

Does visual studio run on Mac OSX, GNU/Linux, PS3, Free BSD? No, therefore it isn't the "greatest supported platform for developers" [SIC]. However virtually every FOSS IDE does. Sorry to burst your bubble. I've used visual studio and it's terribly bloated yuk.

LoveThePenguin said,

Does visual studio run on Mac OSX, GNU/Linux, PS3, Free BSD? No, therefore it isn't the "greatest supported platform for developers" [SIC]. However virtually every FOSS IDE does. Sorry to burst your bubble. I've used visual studio and it's terribly bloated yuk.

Why do I get the strange feeling that you hate VS because Microsoft makes it?

The Lurk Master said,
Atleast there should be some good apps at launch

You're assuming any developer worth their salt would take up this specious offer.

LoveThePenguin said,

You're assuming any developer worth their salt would take up this specious offer.

They would. At least any developers that are basing their decisions on a business sense instead of blind brand loyalty. Microsoft will give you a phone to test on, sample code, IDE, literature, and PAY for your time so you can MAKE money.

Microsoft's app store is going to start from 0. Why wouldn't you want in on this? There will be a need for every type of app under the sun and on launch day people will be signing on looking for an app to download. Why wouldn't you want to be there with the least amount of competition possible? You know that MS is going to be throwing everything they can to make this product a success, even if they have to run in the red for a couple years.

Bengal34 said,

They would. At least any developers that are basing their decisions on a business sense instead of blind brand loyalty. Microsoft will give you a phone to test on, sample code, IDE, literature, and PAY for your time so you can MAKE money.

Microsoft's app store is going to start from 0. Why wouldn't you want in on this? There will be a need for every type of app under the sun and on launch day people will be signing on looking for an app to download. Why wouldn't you want to be there with the least amount of competition possible? You know that MS is going to be throwing everything they can to make this product a success, even if they have to run in the red for a couple years.

Absolutely. This is gold for developers, big and small.

LoveThePenguin said,

MS employees will be the only developers writing for that platform I guarantee you.

You are already wrong.

Smart move by MS. Inject a ****-ton of money and hope for the best (like they did with the XBOX, Bing Cashback, etc)

Pharos said,
Smart move by MS. Inject a ****-ton of money and hope for the best (like they did with the XBOX, Bing Cashback, etc)

It worked for those. The xbox is a major player and Bing has really come into it's own. Sure, it doesn't have the kind of marketshare that Google does, but it sure as heck been improving. Think back to windows live search and then look and use bing. I would call that an incredible improvement.

Bengal34 said,

It worked for those. The xbox is a major player and Bing has really come into it's own. Sure, it doesn't have the kind of marketshare that Google does, but it sure as heck been improving. Think back to windows live search and then look and use bing. I would call that an incredible improvement.

Yeah but they couldn't really go backwards from Windows live search now could they?

offroadaaron said,

Yeah but they couldn't really go backwards from Windows live search now could they?

So if they release something and it doesn't go over well, they suck, and if they release something and it's good, they suck?

GreyWolf said,

So if they release something and it doesn't go over well, they suck, and if they release something and it's good, they suck?

Try rereading that again wolf. It's clear that he means bing couldn't possibly be any worse than live search, that is, when your at the bottom, the only way is up. Although in terms of market share capitalisation, bing is statistically indistinguishable from live search if you include the yahoo deal.

LoveThePenguin said,

Try rereading that again wolf. It's clear that he means bing couldn't possibly be any worse than live search, that is, when your at the bottom, the only way is up. Although in terms of market share capitalisation, bing is statistically indistinguishable from live search if you include the yahoo deal.

So, you're admiting that they threw a lot of money at the problem and produced a better product?

Magallanes said,
i am sold!

And frankly, i love c#, for me it is the best language ever (programmer viewpoint).

A heck of a lot better than objective-C

Magallanes said,
i am sold!

And frankly, i love c#, for me it is the best language ever (programmer viewpoint).

No thanks. I will use Java (which microsoft cloned to make C#) which runs on pretty much all platforms (no vendor lock-in), and I have tons of choices of implementations (again no vendor lock-in), and allows me to develop enterprise software with zero cost in tools, servers, and OSes.

Proprietary Microsoft technology just can not compare in terms of cost.

Bengal34 said,

A heck of a lot better than objective-C

And, in my opinion, none of the other mobile development environments even come close to Visual Studio. I know I'm biased toward .Net languages over Java. But, language aside and looking at the IDE's alone, it is almost painful using Eclipse to write Android apps after having a background in Visual Studio.

speckles said,

No thanks. I will use Java (which microsoft cloned to make C#) which runs on pretty much all platforms (no vendor lock-in), and I have tons of choices of implementations (again no vendor lock-in), and allows me to develop enterprise software with zero cost in tools, servers, and OSes.

Proprietary Microsoft technology just can not compare in terms of cost.

C# is an ECMA standard. It's not proprietary.

speckles said,

No thanks. I will use Java (which microsoft cloned to make C#) which runs on pretty much all platforms (no vendor lock-in), and I have tons of choices of implementations (again no vendor lock-in), and allows me to develop enterprise software with zero cost in tools, servers, and OSes.

Proprietary Microsoft technology just can not compare in terms of cost.

+1

speckles said,

No thanks. I will use Java (which microsoft cloned to make C#) which runs on pretty much all platforms (no vendor lock-in), and I have tons of choices of implementations (again no vendor lock-in), and allows me to develop enterprise software with zero cost in tools, servers, and OSes.

Proprietary Microsoft technology just can not compare in terms of cost.


+2
Well said sir.

GreyWolf said,
C# is an ECMA standard.

C# and .net are not open standards because MS has dictatorial control over them. Besides we all know ECMA is MS's rubber stamp for its pseudo standards. Look how they tried to fast track OOXML as ISO approved together with MS's corruption of the process,

Additionally, there is uncertainty surrounding competing implementations, and whether MS might sue at a future date, Richard stallman has publicly warned of this and has recommended the exclusion of Mono from GNU/Linux distros. Doing business with MS is a minefield. I recommend using a truly open standard like Java or c/c++ with the native android development kit (NDK).

GreyWolf said,
It's not proprietary.

It has many proprietary extensions. What do you think the System.Windows.Forms namespace is? But this is typical of MS, and its policy of embrace and extend. OOXML has same problems.

Firethorne said,

And, in my opinion, none of the other mobile development environments even come close to Visual Studio. I know I'm biased toward .Net languages over Java. But, language aside and looking at the IDE's alone, it is almost painful using Eclipse to write Android apps after having a background in Visual Studio.

Use Vim/Emacs then. Both are superior to all IDE's. Developers don't need cute icons or fancy menu's to write code, they only serve as a distraction. I'm much more productive without them, give them a try

Magallanes said,
i am sold!
And frankly, i love c#, for me it is the best language ever (programmer viewpoint).

I guess you must love java then considering imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

speckles said,

No thanks. I will use Java (which microsoft cloned to make C#) which runs on pretty much all platforms (no vendor lock-in), and I have tons of choices of implementations (again no vendor lock-in), and allows me to develop enterprise software with zero cost in tools, servers, and OSes.

Proprietary Microsoft technology just can not compare in terms of cost.

i don't think so.
C# indeed is a copy of Java but also it fixed several aspect of Java, or you can call it C# as JAVA Second Edition.
For example, it is trivial (and pretty clean to do) in c# :

switch (string_variable) {
case "open":
// do something.
break;
case "close":
// do something.
break;
default:
// do something.
break;
}

But Java is unable to do it, not at least using some nasty tricks.

or even some too trivial like (c#)

if (variable=="cat") {
return("meow");
}
in java is :
if (variable.equals("cat")) {
return("meow");
}

with is cleaner?

LoveThePenguin said,

Use Vim/Emacs then. Both are superior to all IDE's. Developers don't need cute icons or fancy menu's to write code, they only serve as a distraction. I'm much more productive without them, give them a try

I used Emacs through college. If you can master all of the key combinations and know enough lisp to set up your environment just the way you want it, yes it can be very powerful. I think the key there is the *if*. You set a new user down in front of a long list of things like C-x C-c, or M-C-s, you might get a few quizzical looks.

So, I have tried it. And, sorry, but I am far more productive with VS than emacs. I like integration with source safe. I prefer the debugger to GDB (by a huge margin), and intellisense is a big plus to productivity. And frankly, when I'm developing apps that have a GUI interface, I like to have something where I can see what I've designed without having to compile and start up. If you're doing all your programs for a command line environment, more power to you though. Pick what makes you happy. VS makes me happy.

LoveThePenguin said,

I guess you must love java then considering imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

Java... [shudders] I'm not entirely sure what it is about Java but I hated every second of it in college. I'm pretty positive eclipse and vim had something to do with it. Give me VS and a C language any day of the week.

LoveThePenguin said,

I guess you must love java then considering imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

I love both Java and C#, but I would choose C# over Java almost any day. The Java API and documentation is magnificent and in my opinion the gold standard of documentation. But Visual Studio and IntelliSense are amazing tools. And using Silverlight, XAML to design a UI is much better than the Java tools I have used. And developing for Windows Phone 7 is just a pleasant experience. Much better than developing for Windows Mobile - partially because it is easier to make a pretty application, but mostly because I like the new API's more - and the fact that most of the sensor APIs didn't exist before (like accelerometer, which was manufacturer dependent).

C# has some nice improvements over Java as well, as Magallanes pointed out above, including the ability to do a switch statement on a string (in Java, you can only do a switch on an integer), and the == operator for string comparison. Java defaults to pointer comparison on string == string, which most of the time isn't what you intended to do.

Magallanes said,

For example, it is trivial (and pretty clean to do) in c# :
switch (string_variable) {
case "open":
// do something.
break;
case "close":
// do something.
break;
default:
// do something.
break;
}
But Java is unable to do it, not at least using some nasty tricks.

My god that is poor code. For one thing you have two cases which negates the need for a switch conditional block - an if/else (0 == strcmp(s, s2)) block would suffice, and secondly, why not just use an integer flag/enumeration:


switch (action) {
case action_open:
fopen(...);
break;
case action_close:
fclose(...);
break;
case action_read:
fread(...);
break;
case action_write:
fwrite(...);
break;
default:
/* do some other stuff */
}

This way you wont waste processor cycles comparing strings, and your code is more readable/maintainable.

LoveThePenguin said,
My god that is poor code. For one thing you have two cases which negates the need for a switch conditional block - an if/else (0 == strcmp(s, s2)) block would suffice

It's an example of a language feature that isn't available in Java. It doesn't need to make sense in this context, as long as it does make sense in some supported senario. If he added 3 more cases to the example, would that make you feel better?

LoveThePenguin said,
and secondly, why not just use an integer flag/enumeration

Because it's nice to not be constrained by the language. There are legitimate reasons why you would want to do that, and you know it.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: Microsoft, stick to what you know! This pathetic attempt to cash in on the mobile market -- when you've failed numerous times before -- just proves how desperate and out-of-sync you are. With the iPhone, Android and countless other spin-offs, there's no need for a Windows phone at all. The Zune "zucked", the KIN was killed... get it? Just stick to making the best OS in the world and be satisfied. You don't need to divide and conquer every market that seems lucrative to you.

bjoswald said,
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Microsoft, stick to what you know! This pathetic attempt to cash in on the mobile market -- when you've failed numerous times before -- just proves how desperate and out-of-sync you are. With the iPhone, Android and countless other spin-offs, there's no need for a Windows phone at all. The Zune "zucked", the KIN was killed... get it? Just stick to making the best OS in the world and be satisfied. You don't need to divide and conquer every market that seems lucrative to you.

Who says the Zune sucks? Microsoft is a software company not a phone company. And besides, the Windows phone has been out longer then both Android and iPhone.

bjoswald said,
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Microsoft, stick to what you know! This pathetic attempt to cash in on the mobile market -- when you've failed numerous times before -- just proves how desperate and out-of-sync you are. With the iPhone, Android and countless other spin-offs, there's no need for a Windows phone at all. The Zune "zucked", the KIN was killed... get it? Just stick to making the best OS in the world and be satisfied. You don't need to divide and conquer every market that seems lucrative to you.

Competition is great for the consumer. It sounds like Microsoft is really getting their act together for their new platform. The zune software and the HD are actually really awesome. They just don't have the sales because of the absolute mindshare that Apple has with the iPod brand. It doesn't really matter how good of a product you churn out, people will think it's inferrior.

I'm kind of glad the KIN was killed. This will allow them to focus more on WP7.

This does not show desperation. This is a smart business move. They went out and found the top applications people like to use for their competitor's platforms and are paying the developers to port those over to their platform. This will improve the transition from their competitors platform since all those apps will be there from the begining. Developers tend to not have deep pockets so they will be hesitant to expand to a new platform until it proves itself. By doing this they are hoping to replicate what Google has accomplished but in a faster time frame.

Bengal34 said,

They just don't have the sales because of the absolute mindshare that Apple has with the iPod brand. It doesn't really matter how good of a product you churn out, people will think it's inferrior.

I guess you were not around when Wordstar, WordPerfect and Quattro Pro dominated their respective market.......
Along came Word, Excel etc. and now MS Office is the standard.

bjoswald said,
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Microsoft, stick to what you know! This pathetic attempt to cash in on the mobile market -- when you've failed numerous times before -- just proves how desperate and out-of-sync you are. With the iPhone, Android and countless other spin-offs, there's no need for a Windows phone at all. The Zune "zucked", the KIN was killed... get it? Just stick to making the best OS in the world and be satisfied. You don't need to divide and conquer every market that seems lucrative to you.

The thing is the desktop OS is becoming more and more less important.In the past years the more and more innovation is going to the both the cloud (like Facebook, Youtube, twitter, etc) where the platform is just the Browser.User doesn't care what OS he will use as long as there is good browser on it.The other part where the innovation is going is the mobile market, with those devices becoming more power than the computers you would buy like 5 years ago, with zillions of apps people using them all the day.What Microsoft can do really anymore to make a "better" OS ? not much really.Sticking to what they know will be just the beginning for the end.People no longer actually care about the OS, that's why Microsoft been struggling on those 2 fronts to win as much as they can, even if they lost a lot during the battle, but at least they are trying to guarantee a position before its too late.

kInG aLeXo said,

The thing is the desktop OS is becoming more and more less important.In the past years the more and more innovation is going to the both the cloud (like Facebook, Youtube, twitter, etc) where the platform is just the Browser.User doesn't care what OS he will use as long as there is good browser on it.The other part where the innovation is going is the mobile market, with those devices becoming more power than the computers you would buy like 5 years ago, with zillions of apps people using them all the day.What Microsoft can do really anymore to make a "better" OS ? not much really.Sticking to what they know will be just the beginning for the end.People no longer actually care about the OS, that's why Microsoft been struggling on those 2 fronts to win as much as they can, even if they lost a lot during the battle, but at least they are trying to guarantee a position before its too late.

This is why MS is focusing so much on the cloud. They see it as a logical progression and they are trying to get into it as fast as they can.

kInG aLeXo said,

The thing is the desktop OS is becoming more and more less important.In the past years the more and more innovation is going to the both the cloud (like Facebook, Youtube, twitter, etc) where the platform is just the Browser.User doesn't care what OS he will use as long as there is good browser on it.The other part where the innovation is going is the mobile market, with those devices becoming more power than the computers you would buy like 5 years ago, with zillions of apps people using them all the day.What Microsoft can do really anymore to make a "better" OS ? not much really.Sticking to what they know will be just the beginning for the end.People no longer actually care about the OS, that's why Microsoft been struggling on those 2 fronts to win as much as they can, even if they lost a lot during the battle, but at least they are trying to guarantee a position before its too late.

Your theory fails to reality.
Money makes the wheels spin around, so if solutions have to high a variety in price and the lowest price still covers all your needs, what are you going to choose?
Ease of use, security, stability, speed and support are other things to include.
Another thing, what do you think runs on the cloud?
Without an OS, no cloud, end of story.

You should read a bit about Azure Cloud Computing, and all MS partners that are working coop on it, too.

Mineria said,

Your theory fails to reality.
Money makes the wheels spin around, so if solutions have to high a variety in price and the lowest price still covers all your needs, what are you going to choose?
Ease of use, security, stability, speed and support are other things to include.
Another thing, what do you think runs on the cloud?
Without an OS, no cloud, end of story.

You should read a bit about Azure Cloud Computing, and all MS partners that are working coop on it, too.


"Without an OS, no cloud, end of story." is true, but, what OS doesn't matter at all ! That was what I meant.The more we depend on cloud apps, the less we care about the OS we run, it all becomes about the browser only.Before you had to get Windows because all the apps you use run on Windows, and there are no Mac\Linux alternatives, but now this is no longer the case for most of the people who just use Facebook\Youtube\Twitter\Google\Wikipedia.

Good luck MS, somehow I don't think this is going to work! hahaha nice try though! Windows as a mobile OS has always been bad, I don't have high hopes for Windows Mobile 7.

offroadaaron said,
Good luck MS, somehow I don't think this is going to work! hahaha nice try though! Windows as a mobile OS has always been bad, I don't have high hopes for Windows Mobile 7.

Any reason why?

offroadaaron said,
Good luck MS, somehow I don't think this is going to work! hahaha nice try though! Windows as a mobile OS has always been bad, I don't have high hopes for Windows Mobile 7.

I guess you haven't been keeping up with WP7. The new OS is slick and fast. Due to their locked down minimum specs it's going to be easier to develop for than Android. Zune and xBox are going to be killer features for it.

Bengal34 said,

I guess you haven't been keeping up with WP7. The new OS is slick and fast. Due to their locked down minimum specs it's going to be easier to develop for than Android. Zune and xBox are going to be killer features for it.

Yeah your probably right I haven't kept up with it, but MS is awesome at integrating everything and turning it into something nice and easy for everyone. I bet the zune and xbox features will be awesome. LOL!

offroadaaron said,

Yeah your probably right I haven't kept up with it, but MS is awesome at integrating everything and turning it into something nice and easy for everyone. I bet the zune and xbox features will be awesome. LOL!

They will be. With zune comes the zunePass. Same concept as Rhapsody buy you get free downloads (to keep) every month. The zune software for both the desktop and on the zuneHD istself are actually really slick.

With xbox comes gaming. Not just regular stuff like flash style games but real 3d games. Microsoft has launched a mobile version of it's gaming studios. You're going to be seeing games on the phone made by the same companies that make games for the xbox. Plus, they have a good indie game development ecosystem right now. Those same developers will be able to use the same exact code to code for the xbox as they will for the phone.

I think there are a lot of reasons to be excited about the platform and I think Microsoft is stepping up to the plate to really contend again in this market.

offroadaaron said,

Any reason why what? Please explain your question?

What do you mean "why what?" I think his question is quite clear: why do you feel that this is not going to work? Why do you have low expectations for WP7?

offroadaaron said,

Yeah your probably right I haven't kept up with it, but MS is awesome at integrating everything and turning it into something nice and easy for everyone. I bet the zune and xbox features will be awesome. LOL!

yes, yes they will.

The_sidewinder said,

What do you mean "why what?" I think his question is quite clear: why do you feel that this is not going to work? Why do you have low expectations for WP7?

Oh so he asked 2 questions with his one question there? Wow how lazy.

To answer the question, they have been doing mobiles for ages, they don't seem to have a grasp on what people want in the mobile game judging from the previous versions and upgrades, why would I put high hopes on a mobile software company that hasn't delivered for years now.

Bengal34 said,

yes, yes they will.

That will be a first for them then.

Temperingpick said,

That's not desperate. It's a brilliant idea. It's like a safety net for developers.

Ask shareholders if they agreed with you.......

GreyWolf said,
No, they just want to make sure there are plenty of apps available at launch.

Sounds like people are really enthusiastic and confident about this platform if they have to be bribed into it.

Fritzly said,

Ask shareholders if they agreed with you.......

They've already lost a billion of Kin another few million isn't gonna make them any angrier. Microsoft always tries throwing money at a problem and most of the time it doesn't work.

thealexweb said,

They've already lost a billion of Kin another few million isn't gonna make them any angrier. Microsoft always tries throwing money at a problem and most of the time it doesn't work.

That should be lost a billion ON not of.

.Neo said,

Sounds like people are really enthusiastic and confident about this platform if they have to be bribed into it.

... and the point blew right past you. Many companies do this. Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo... Apple. Most of them don't keep it a secret, though. "Incubator" programs are quite common.

mocax said,
hope they release wm6.5 code for the geeky people.....

wp7 is too mainstream....

That would be a good idea, but Microsoft rarely does open-source.

mocax said,
hope they release wm6.5 code for the geeky people.....

wp7 is too mainstream....

I'm doubting it'll take all that long until someone 'jailbreaks' a WP7 handset to offer more complete customization.

bolix said,
Where do I sign up?
I think it's one of those things where they come to you and not the other way around

thealexweb said,
Android has a lot more 65,000 apps it's closer to a 100,000.

They do, but how many of them are complete garbage? Lets look at the gems new in the market. Farting simon, the memory game simon now with fart sounds.

Don't get me wrong, I love my droid. There are good apps made by reputible developers. The apps made by google are fantastic. I just think they do too much to tout quantity and keep you in the dark about quality. Unless you're a connoisseur of slider puzzlers and fart soundboards, you'll probably not want the vast majority of them.

Firethorne said,

I just think they do too much to tout quantity and keep you in the dark about quality. Unless you're a connoisseur of slider puzzlers and fart soundboards, you'll probably not want the vast majority of them.

Variety is the spice. I'm guessing MS would jump at the chance to have those same apps available that you label as garbage, but alas, no developers are interested in Kin service pack 2.

LoveThePenguin said,

but alas, no developers are interested in Kin service pack 2.

Not true. Add me to the list of developers interested in WP7. Interested, and actively developing for it.

rootedroid said,
They are too far out of the game. There is no chance they will complete with Apple and Google.

Apple and Google started with 0 apps also, at the time when Windows Mobile and other OSs had thousands of apps.

kInG aLeXo said,

Apple and Google started with 0 apps also, at the time when Windows Mobile and other OSs had thousands of apps.

Yeah but the thing is Windows mobile didn't have an App store at the time, so they made something so people could access apps easier which pretty much made the iphone and not android what it is today, Microsoft is just copying now and is behind the game majorly. It'll get the same apps iPhone and Android have but I just don't think the OS will be very good, just going by the previous versions.

offroadaaron said,

Yeah but the thing is Windows mobile didn't have an App store at the time, so they made something so people could access apps easier which pretty much made the iphone and not android what it is today, Microsoft is just copying now and is behind the game majorly. It'll get the same apps iPhone and Android have but I just don't think the OS will be very good, just going by the previous versions.


Well, copying is ok if they will copy it the right way, can't really judge on the thing before it gets released and people use it.Its not about the hardware of the external look, but the user experience it offers.

rootedroid said,
They are too far out of the game. There is no chance they will complete with Apple and Google.

Yeah, Microsoft is also crazy for getting into gaming. They actually think they'll compete with Sony and the PS2 with something called an XBox? Come on, who's going to get one of those?

offroadaaron said,

Yeah but the thing is Windows mobile didn't have an App store at the time, so they made something so people could access apps easier which pretty much made the iphone and not android what it is today, Microsoft is just copying now and is behind the game majorly. It'll get the same apps iPhone and Android have but I just don't think the OS will be very good, just going by the previous versions.

"but I just don't think the OS will be very good, just going by the previous versions."

Such a ignorant statement. If you read the blog post, one of the reasons MS is paying people is because "Since Windows Phone 7 is vastly different from its previous mobile operating, systems none of the old apps will work." So how can you say anything about it.

There are lots of videos, especially this week showing the new OS in use. It looks every bit as good as Android or iOS. It looks like a Zune HD phone to be honest. Every Zune HD review I have read, even those sites that are Anti-MS praise the Zune HD UI, and the new phones will have it.

Also if you did any research at all you will know that Microsoft has set some very good min hardware specs for these new phones, like 512megs of RAM for the OS, 1ghz CPU, touch interface, GPS etc. So the hardware has to be solid, thing EVO or Droid X hardware.

Lastely, just like Windows Mobile and Adroid, Windows Phone 7 will be on every cell provider and probably multiple phones to choose from. I dont think WP7 will blow away iPhone or Android, but it will take sales away from them. iPhone will be the loser because it will be getting attacked in so many ways, by so many different phones on all networks.

Firethorne said,

Yeah, Microsoft is also crazy for getting into gaming. They actually think they'll compete with Sony and the PS2 with something called an XBox? Come on, who's going to get one of those?

WIN!

kInG aLeXo said,

Apple and Google started with 0 apps also, at the time when Windows Mobile and other OSs had thousands of apps.

Android is an open platform and free as in beer. I don't think MS can boast the same. Additionally with the failure of the Kin, developers and users will be wary to invest in yet another MS phone.

Bengal34 said,
Not really.

Ye really. Look at the Kin, an epic failure if I ever saw one. MS is incapable of making good phones. Those are the facts I'm afraid

LoveThePenguin said,

Ye really. Look at the Kin, an epic failure if I ever saw one. MS is incapable of making good phones. Those are the facts I'm afraid

Not really. The KIN was the replacement for the sidekick, a data-heavy feature phone. However, with the growing adoption of smart phones for consumers this target market got squeezed down and was no longer large enough to field a product.

The KIN was a completely different phone than WP7. If you think otherwise then you have no idea what you're talking about.

The previous poster said that they were too far out of the game. The smartphone market only encompasses about a third of the total cell phone market and this is expected to double over the next few years. It is not too late to enter the smartphone space or in Microsoft's case to re-enter. Was Android too late to get into the market? No. Why would WP7 be?

Lamerz4391 said,

WIN!

NOT Win Mobile has been in the mobile game for ages this statement has nothing to do with how well the mobile OS is going to do, they have failed at the mobile OS for like AGES now! The Xbox was something new and was decent from the first instance, plus there weren't that many consoles brands to choose from anyway, the mobile market is much different.

rrode74 said,

"but I just don't think the OS will be very good, just going by the previous versions."

Such a ignorant statement.

Ignorant or good judgement.

You see someone in the street and they are doing drugs for the first time ever, you'd think they are a druggie straight away, the only difference is Windows equals a full time druggie because its never particularly been good, to say it is a good platform before launch is just stupid. It takes a lot to reform a druggie and I don't know if Microsoft will be able to kick the habbit.

Edited by offroadaaron, Jul 14 2010, 11:54pm :

They may need to, to offset the inevitable marketshare penalty they'll have at least in the start. Their devs won't exactly build apps for massive amounts of users from the beginning, and it might be tougher to build marketshare now than before there was Android. It remains to be seen if it'll work though. They've had similar financial incentives with Bing, but that didn't help much.

DonC said,
I think trying to stay in the market is the first step!

Yeah, theyu have to pay developers since there is no other initiative for them do develop apps for Win 7 mobile.

TrOjAn. said,
Hehe, trying to beat Apple

And it's a bad thing for them to try to have the app store stocked as much as possible for the initial release? They have been offering cash to developers to port their already successful apps from other platforms. This would ease adoption to their new platform since all the apps that people used would be on the new platform at launch.

Microsoft has been going full bore courting developers. Their tools are second to none and they are providing such a wealth of information and literature. You can get a free 200-page eBook to get you started and hours of video lectures. Add to this the thousands of free developer handsets being shipped.

It seems like they are really heading in the right direction towards making a solid and successful platform. Apple is already slowing down in the mobile space. Google's Android has been surpassing in sales and their app store has been improving exponentially in size and quality. They are going to be the consumer phones to beat shortly, not Apple.

How's that $99 yearly subscription to MobileMe working out for you?

Bengal34 said,

And it's a bad thing for them to try to have the app store stocked as much as possible for the initial release? They have been offering cash to developers to port their already successful apps from other platforms. This would ease adoption to their new platform since all the apps that people used would be on the new platform at launch.

Microsoft has been going full bore courting developers. Their tools are second to none and they are providing such a wealth of information and literature. You can get a free 200-page eBook to get you started and hours of video lectures. Add to this the thousands of free developer handsets being shipped.

It seems like they are really heading in the right direction towards making a solid and successful platform. Apple is already slowing down in the mobile space. Google's Android has been surpassing in sales and their app store has been improving exponentially in size and quality. They are going to be the consumer phones to beat shortly, not Apple.

How's that $99 yearly subscription to MobileMe working out for you?

Please stop with the Android (platform) to iPhone (device) comparisons. Regardless of Apple's reasons, the iPhone is a single device that is constantly being compared to all Android devices. It is a poor comparison. It's like comparing Macs (computers) with Windows (platform). Compare Macs with what Dell and HP offer. And what does MobileMe have to do with anything?

How's that $99 yearly subscription to MobileMe working out for you?

Google sync + dropbox working a-OK for me on my iPhone, boss! No need for MobileMe, but I do like the 20GB of online storage they offer. You can get it for as low as $50/year if you shop around.

Shadrack said,

Google sync + dropbox working a-OK for me on my iPhone, boss! No need for MobileMe, but I do like the 20GB of online storage they offer. You can get it for as low as $50/year if you shop around.

With WP7 you get it all, plus 25gb of storage, for free. Android has it's own version for free as well.

@asdavis10

I mentioned Android because they opened their store after Apple did and started from 0. They have done well for themselves despite starting from 0 and have become a major player in the market. I fully believe that their market share will continue to increase while Apple's will slow and possibly reverse. I believe that Microsoft will follow Android's lead into the space but with the OEM restrictions on the phones will make developer adoption easier.

Android and iOS are both platforms as are OSX and Windows. I mentioned MobileMe because you get the same and more with Android and WP7 for free.

Bengal34 said,


Android and iOS are both platforms as are OSX and Windows. I mentioned MobileMe because you get the same and more with Android and WP7 for free.

If you're happy with the cloud services on Android that Google provides, why wouldn't you be happy using those exact same services on an iPhone? My iPhone is currently using Gmail for email, syncing the calendar with Google Calendar and syncing the contacts with Google contacts. It even one ups Android by syncing Notes with a special IMAP folder it creates on my Gmail account. What free cloud service does Google provide that the iPhone can't take advantage of?

Bengal34 said,

With WP7 you get it all, plus 25gb of storage, for free. Android has it's own version for free as well.

@asdavis10

I mentioned Android because they opened their store after Apple did and started from 0. They have done well for themselves despite starting from 0 and have become a major player in the market. I fully believe that their market share will continue to increase while Apple's will slow and possibly reverse. I believe that Microsoft will follow Android's lead into the space but with the OEM restrictions on the phones will make developer adoption easier.

Android and iOS are both platforms as are OSX and Windows. I mentioned MobileMe because you get the same and more with Android and WP7 for free.

But you didn't compare iOS and Android. You compared Android sales to iPhone sales. Can you see the difference? And as @geoken said, an iPhone can take advantage of Google cloud services. So I don't really see why the MobileMe comment was needed.