This isn’t really a blog post about helping people to get started with development for Windows Phone, but more of an insight into the experiences that I have had as a student developer with the platform. If you’re looking to get started with Windows Phone 7 development, you can find a great book on it here for free written by Rob Miles, a lecturer and Microsoft MVP at our university in Hull, UK.

My first base application to get me fully registered as a Windows Phone developer was published onto the marketplace back in March 2011. It was just a basic app that turned your phones screen yellow. There was no skill involved, it was just an XNA application with the background colour set to yellow, but I did it so that I could set up my account. Since then, I have published a few other applications which have gained a little interest on the marketplace and have raised me a little bit of money.

I finally received my first cheque from Microsoft the other week, and it feels good to know that after just over a year, I have been paid for programs that I have developed, even if the front end graphical interfaces are very poor.

As said in yesterdays post, I would love to work with a graphic designer, but for now it seems that I will have to design my own interfaces as well as the back end programming. Obviously, I understand that if I had started my mobile app development off using Android and iOS, I would have earned the money a lot quicker as the two have a lot larger user base. It’s not just about the money though as a developer. It’s the experience of making an application which you are either selling to the world or letting people have it for free, and knowing that someone somewhere is using your software.

I’ve come to grips with Windows Phone 7 itself dying, but I’m really looking forward to developing for Windows Phone 8 when the devices are available as it is definitely the future for Microsoft. Whether the OS keeps Nokia on hand is another question. With the poor sales of their Lumia devices, I’m pretty sure that Windows Phone 8 won’t be able to boost sales until a few years after release, and by that time I can see Nokia moving to Android. Which is a shame as I think the Nokia Lumia range of phones are pretty cool in design and work with the Microsoft User Interface style.

Hopefully the self teaching for development for Android and iOS will add to the skills that I have already learned at university to further help my career in the future.

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