MANILA, Philippines — Software giant Microsoft has finally brought its paid app store for Windows Phone (WP7) users in the Philippines, following the recent launch of Nokia’s fleet of WP7-powered smartphones in the country.
With the opening of the Windows Phone Marketplace to local users, smartphone owners will now be able to get access to some 34,000 apps made for Microsoft’s new mobile platform.
Previously, only free apps can be downloaded to WP7 phones in the Philippines due to restrictions set by Microsoft. With the launch of the Marketplace in 28 new markets this week, Filipinos can now avail of paid apps using their local credit cards.
To be able to do so, users need to log on to their phones using their Windows Live (or Hotmail.ph) ID to gain access to the growing number of apps in the Windows Phone Marketplace.
Some of the popular mobile apps for Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare are available free on the store, including the official Traffic Navigation app from the Metro Manila Development Authority.
“Microsoft constantly strives to bring the best experience to its customers, and by making the Windows Phone Marketplace available to Filipinos, we are enabling access to a wide range of apps for local consumers”, said Jerry Bongco, operator channels lead, Microsoft Philippines.
Bongco said that with the opening of the Windows Phone Marketplace in the country, developers willing to publish their apps on the platform are also given better support through the App Hub developer platform.
“Starting February, the App Hub opened submissions from developers in the new markets,” Bongco explained. “While we don’t yet offer full App Hub developer support in every new market, local developers are still able to build and publish their apps to Marketplace through our Global Publisher Program.”
Under the Global Publisher Program, a Global Publisher or a third-party company works with a developer as an intermediary in regions where the App Hub is not yet available.
Microsoft has been on a developer campaign lately to drum up interest among the local developer communities for creating apps on its mobile platform.
Just recently, the software company staged the latest iteration of its innovations showcase, where apps for Windows Phone 7, the Xbox Kinect, and its cloud platform Azure took center stage.
According to Tim Vergel de Dios, breadth developer evangelist at Microsoft, the company is seeing a lot of potential for Filipino developers, particularly in the mobile app development space.
“I think this is really the best time to be a developer,” the executive said, adding: “Mostly, developers have been there just for support. What’s nice today is developers have a lot of options now.”
Microsoft opens paid app store for Windows Phone users in PH
Source: InterAksyon.com – Infotech