The publishing of this post as postponed by three days because of problems with Jamie’s connection

Today was the second day of Microsoft’s UK Tech Days conference on the Windows 7 Phone format. It took place at the Fulham Broadway Vue and covered the topics involved in developing and deploying software ‘apps’ for the Windows 7 Phones.

The Start screen of Windows Phone 7

Image via Wikipedia


Today’s content was focused on data loading and types. Whereas most of yesterday was based on loading the data into memory and manipulating it, today’s focus was on getting the data to the device in the most efficient way.

A user wont use your app if they notice that their [phone bill’s] data rates go through the roof

That goes hand in hand with the key point of the Windows Phone 7 presentations:

Reducing app installation regret; we don’t want users to install an app, then have regret about using it for any reason. This can be accomplished by having great quality code on these devices alongside quality data loading

The keynote for today was going to be Brandon Watson going through some of the key information in Microsoft’s press release from last night, but his voice wasn’t up to scratch. Instead, he took us through some key ideas and features that Windows Phone 7 devices have in place of the iDevices and the Android phones.

It says a lot about a device when the best selling app is an app killer. Windows Phone 7 has the best garbage collection service out there…

I’ve been told that the Android devices are better because they have dual cores, but a dual core takes more power, and more power means less run time…

The amount of software libraries that we [Microsoft] provide to developers is ridiculous…

Hardware Limitations?

All phones have compasses built into them, but very few of them have pre-built API’s to access it – something that the Windows Phone 7 SDK has. One thing to remember, though, is that some Windows Phone 7 devices don’t have gyro’s in them.

If a gyro isn’t present, then motion detection and the augmented reality API will be buggy

Software for Developers

Along with Visual Studio – current version is 2010, but there is a new version out soon (2011) – there are a plethora of different tools available for Windows Phone 7 developers.

There are the Mango development tools; which will enable developers to get a handle on the new features coming to version 7.1 (or 7.5, or “Mango”) of the OS FOR FREE

There are design tools; for instance Expression Blend, which allows designers and developers alike to quickly program the UX (User eXperience) with the standard code by dragging and dropping items onto a design area.

There’s obviously Silverlight; which looks like it powers the entire device. Also, it’s NOT a replacement for flash (as most people seem to be saying).

The No 1 Thing to take From the Conference?

The importance of design, rule #1: DON’T GET A MULLET

Mullet’s look out of place more than most hair styles, and so do “dodgy” controls and UI items. If they’re not meant to be there, don’t use them.

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Jamie is a .NET developer specialising in ASP.NET MVC websites and services, with a background in WinForms and Games Development. When not programming using .NET, he is either learning about .NET Core (and usually building something cross platform with it), speaking Japanese to anyone who'll listen, learning about languages, writing for this blog, or writing for a blog about Retro Gaming (which he runs with his brother)