Microsoft to launch Silverlight for Symbian beta within a week

Back near the start of 2008, it was announced by the Redmond software-giant Microsoft and Finnish communications company Nokia that the Silverlight platform would be coming to Symbian OS phones. Fast forward to 2010, and there's still no sign of that happening – until now. Two days ago, Microsoft posted the Silverlight for Symbian beta, including the developer tools, which were both taken down soon after. 

Mary-Jo Foley of ZDNet noted down the description from the beta, listed here: "The installable executable enables users to run Silverlight applications on the Nokia S60 5th Edition platform." The developer tools read, "The installable executable file enables users to run Silverlight on the Nokia S60 5th Edition platform. The executable file includes the Silverlight runtime for the Nokia S60 5th Edition devices, the Silverlight runtime for the Nokia S60 5th Edition emulator, sample applications, and developer documentation." Microsoft is hosting its annual Mix Web conference beginning in a few days, so it's very likely that the beta will be made available then, as the SDK seems to be ready for a beta release (judging by the brief leak two days ago).

If you're a Windows developer, be sure to keep an eye out on the announcements as they come next week, especially if you deal with Silverlight and/or Symbian. Additionally, Microsoft may also issue an update on its plans for Silverlight on Google's Android platform, though there's a good chance they may remain silent on the issue. Neowin will be covering any major announcements, as per usual.

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30 Comments

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GP007 said,
If this goes down wonder how long before they do (if) a version for Android as well.

I dunno. But I wonder about the breadth of this framework on other devices... I mean Silverlight is the development framework for apps on WP7 now, so I am kind of curious if Silverlight apps would run on Symbian as well. This could have some substantial ramifications...

M_Lyons10 said,
I dunno. But I wonder about the breadth of this framework on other devices... I mean Silverlight is the development framework for apps on WP7 now, so I am kind of curious if Silverlight apps would run on Symbian as well. This could have some substantial ramifications...

Visual Studio Licences > Windows Phone only Silverlight. Microsoft aren't stupid, they know where the big money lies ;-)

Edited by Majesticmerc, Mar 14 2010, 12:08am :

Majesticmerc said,

Visual Studio Licences > Windows Phone only Silverlight. Microsoft aren't stupid, they know where the big money lies ;-)

There is that, but Symbian, lets face it, is also on the way down at this point. Doing silverlight for it will help sell more VS licenses I'm sure, but it's also a good way to snag developers over to WP7s instead of having them jump ship over fully to iPhone or Android only. More people using Silverlight even if it's on a non-MS device doesn't hurt MS in the long run.

GP007 said,

There is that, but Symbian, lets face it, is also on the way down at this point. Doing silverlight for it will help sell more VS licenses I'm sure, but it's also a good way to snag developers over to WP7s instead of having them jump ship over fully to iPhone or Android only. More people using Silverlight even if it's on a non-MS device doesn't hurt MS in the long run.

Not at all. It helps them a lot, considering how they're trying to get that technology out in front of as many people as possible... I think this is really smart. That's why I am curious about cross platform at this point...

M_Lyons10 said,

Not at all. It helps them a lot, considering how they're trying to get that technology out in front of as many people as possible... I think this is really smart. That's why I am curious about cross platform at this point...


This may be a very smart move if the apps developed for symbian platform on silverlight can be ported to windows mobile 7 easily.

zagor said,

This may be a very smart move if the apps developed for symbian platform on silverlight can be ported to windows mobile 7 easily.

That's what I'm thinking. I mean I'm just theorizing... But it would be really great, and given that it's a framework I would think it would be possible... And they did mention that this works in part (At least) through emulation on the Symbian handset... So that sounds promising as well...

They are but I wouldn't write them off; Symbian has reacted too slowly to competition in the smart phone market from the likes of Apple et all have have stretched S60 (which is still an outstanding mobile OS and in many respects is still ahead of its competitors) a little far beyond its original brief.

They're finally rolling out Symbian ^3 sometime before Q3 2010 so we'll have to see what happens. It's pretty key that they get developers on board the platform and products such as Silverlight will no doubt help especially if such apps are easy to port between WM7 and Symbian.

ale07 said,
What about all of your existing windows mobile users?

Microsoft just left you all in the cold, like it did with WP7.

ale07 said,
What about all of your existing windows mobile users?

Actually, they could do silverlight for WM6.x, we'll know in 2 days at MiX if they are though.

ilev said,

Microsoft just left you all in the cold, like it did with WP7.

I am an existing WinMo user, and I support Microsoft's decision to start from scratch and not try to support older applications... It is why they are able to do all the things they're trying to do with WP7... Windows Mobile needed a fresh start.

ilev said,

Microsoft just left you all in the cold, like it did with WP7.


don't worry, they are in no worse condition than iphone users.

ale07 said,
What about all of your existing windows mobile users?
Sorry, they were all using closed source software, and support is lost when MS decides so.

Northgrove said,
Sorry, they were all using closed source software, and support is lost when MS decides so.

how is that different than iphone, mac os, or even linux (you don't even have an official support). you seriously can not expect indefinite support. And when it comes to smartphones, remember that most of us change phones every two year.