Microsoft releases final Windows Phone 7 SDK to developers

Microsoft released the final edition of its Windows Phone 7 SDK to developers on Thursday morning.

Microsoft has been quietly working with some companies to ensure there are some great launch partner apps. Foursquare, Pandora, Twitter and Netflix are some of the big names that the software giant will introduce at launch.

Microsoft will open the Windows Phone marketplace in early October and begin accepting submissions. Apple's App Store currently features over 250,000 apps. Google's Android sits at over 50,000 apps and Microsoft's Windows Phone store will likely hold less than 5,000 at launch. Microsoft is aiming for quality and not quantity however. Seattle PI notes that at a media event in Redmond this week, Brandon Watson, a Windows Phone evangelist, asked the audience "Which is more important to you: quality of apps or quantity of apps?". The software giant hopes that its high profile status will attract a large amount of high quality apps.

"It's been a pretty long journey, where we came from, and I'm happy with where we're at," Scott Guthrie, corporate vice president of Microsoft's developer platform, said. Guthrie also demonstrated Microsoft's developer tools earlier this week. Applications can be coded quickly with preloaded templates and Microsoft hopes that the ease of use of the tools will attract developers.

In a blog post announcing the final SDK, Brandon Watson - a Windows Phone evangelist said:

The final release of the Windows Phone Developer Tools is the culmination of hard work on the part of many talented people. We couldn’t, however, have done it without the help of the community. The feedback we received since our initial release in March has enabled us to make some changes, resulting in a better finished product

Microsoft is expected to announce a range of Windows Phone 7 handsets at an open house event in New York on October 11. Devices are expected to hit the retail market at the end of October. Microsoft Windows Phone 7 developer tools can be found here.

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