zeebox: Windows 8 needs to pass "the sniff test" for more developer support

Microsoft has been promoting the fact that more and more people are using both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. Last week, the company announced it had sold 60 million Windows 8 licenses and that it had 100 million Windows 8 app downloads so far. It also announced last week that sales of Windows Phone devices were up five times what they were a year ago during Christmas week.

But are these bullet points going to be enough to bring more app developers to Microsoft's two newest operating systems? A few weeks ago, we contacted the company behind an Android/iOS an app that's been getting a lot of attention lately; zeebox. The app gives users a "second screen" experience when they watch a TV show live by collecting Twitter messages about the show they are watching.

It launched in the U.K. in 2011, and in September it launched in the U.S. with financial backing and promotional support from NBC and HBO, among others. The free app has since been downloaded more than one million times for iOS and Android in the U.S. There's even a BlackBerry version of the app for U.K. users.

So is zeebox planning a version for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8? Today, we received a response from Anthony Rose, the company's co-founder and chief technology officer. He provided Neowin with the following statement via email:

We’ve looked at doing a Windows 8 version of zeebox – and in fact we did some work to make our web version of zeebox work nicely in IE on Windows 8 smartphones – but, as with many other developers, we’re really waiting till there are more Windows 8 devices in the market before we can devote significant resources to a custom version of zeebox for that platform.

And what about Microsoft's statements about 60 million Windows 8 licenses and lots of new Windows Phone 8 smartphones being sold? Rose told us it will take more than just sheer numbers to get some developers to move to those platforms. He said:

I suspect that developers will wait until they see that some fraction of their friends are using that device, at which point it will make it onto the development radar. In other words, the sniff test :-)

If Rose's "sniff test" is the deciding factor, we may have to wait a while longer before a larger influx of app developers decided to move onto Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.

Image via zeebox

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Microsoft prepping Photosynth for Windows Phone 8 launch

Next Story

Microsoft: Yammer is the company's "golden egg"

16 Comments - Add comment