Phone Map Toys


Fig 1 – Windows Phone 7 Series Emulator

New toys last night! Microsoft released the Windows Phone 7 Series Development CTP at MIX2010 yesterday. Tim Heuer has a helpful Getting Started page.

I’m curious to see the resulting acronymization for this, perhaps ‘WiPho7′, hopefully not ‘Wiph7′.

The great news is Silverlight support with XNA thrown in as well, with Silverlight life is easy, with XNA life is 3D.

Getting started was straightforward. I just followed Tim Heuer’s instructions and then went to Petzold’s blog.

and … “Houston, we have emulation.”


Fig 2 – Windows Phone 7 Series Emulator

After a couple of minutes I have the emulator running a simple Bing Maps image. It’s nothing more than an <image> with the new RESTful Beta as a source, but you get the idea.

Some of the nice hardware specifications:

  • 800×480
  • Wi-Fi (InternetExplorer)
  • Camera 5 megapixel
  • Accelerometer
  • Compass
  • Location (longitude, latitude, altitude, course, speed, reverse geocoded address)
  • Speech
  • Vibration
  • Push Notification

MIX2010 showed some devices, but real hardware should be available by this fall.

As far as maps, Charles Petzold has this to say:
“Programs are location-aware, have access to maps and
other data through Bing and Windows Live, and can interface with social networking sites.”

Summary:

Overall, this fills a big hole in the Silverlight framework. We will at least have a Silverlight target across the full range of platforms by 2011. Android has a big headstart, but I believe the base Silverlight/XNA CLR technology will provide a stronger development platform in the long run. Sorry Apple fans. With some real competitor technologies, iPhone will eventually recede due to Apple’s artsy, control freaky orientation.