Before I actualy start let me tell you one thing: I can't realy write something new. Everything about windows phone development is already out there. But lets start the story three weeks ago.
Three weeks ago I wanted to do something new. At this time I read from @techpreacher on Twitter that Microsoft Switzerland started a contest where you can win a Nokia Lumia, the new Windows Phone from Nokia. Read more about it here.
That was good motivation for me and Windows Phone or short WP7 development was the thing to do. It was a good idea to get some more knowledge in this area specially because the Windows 8 Metro Style App developement is pretty close to WP7 development. This I learned at a MSUGS event where Maik Schärer talked about it. So this will also be a good investment for the future.
The idee for the first app was to build the cool Senso game from the 80ies which I already did ten years ago for the hp and compaq pda's everybody in my age will surely remeber. So let's start.
I already had a WindowsLive account, Visual Studio 2010 installed and some Silverlight knowlage. I asked Google what to do next. I need the Windows Phone SDK 7.1. Version 7.1 to build Windows Phone 7.5 (Mango) apps? Yes that's right :-) Get it from here. If you installed the SDK you got everything you need to develop a WP7 app and test it on the emulator. You don't evan need a windows phone.
Another must have tool ist the Silverlight for Windows Phone Toolkit which provides a lot of useful additional controls.
Now the technical part begins. Start Visual Studio, choose the right templete for your app, etc. It makes no sense if I write anything about the dev part in this blog. Everything on how to start you will find here, start under education. Another great resource is MSDN. And already in the first view hours I had a lot of specific questions, problems and no answers. All the answers I found on the great WindowsPhoneGeek site. Give it a try!
If you wanna make your App available to others, you need an account on AppHub. The registration is straight forward but will cost you a few bucks. The only strange thing was the exchange rate. $ 99.- in the US and CHF 129.- in Switzerland. C'mon Microsoft, what's wrong with you guys!? Anyway, pay and they do a real good job for you by selling your App to the whole world. I think it's a faire deal.
To get your App certified you have to fullfill a lot of requirements. It's a good idea to read this section on MSDN. It gives you a good understanding on what are the dos and don'ts so that your App will be available on the whole world soon.
Last thing I learned, give them a trial version of your App. The statistic sais, you will sell 70% more this way.
So now have fun developing wp7 apps and games!
Ohh, one last thing, buy my Apps on the Microsoft Marketplace and follow me on twitter for more great hints ;-)