Windows 8 preview to have handful of ported games
The Windows 8 public preview when it ships will have a handful of available games that mostly come from familiar sources in the Microsoft universe, according to new tips on Tuesday. Some of the games seen by The Verge will be direct ports of Xbox 360 downloadable titles, such as Ms. Splosion Man and Toy Soldiers. Others would be titles that are better known on mobile even with a big-screen version, such as the seminal Angry Birds and ilomilo.
Windows Phone Tango may catch up in speed, reach
Microsoft may have inadvertently spoiled many of its plans for Windows Phone's Tango update after an Indian developer presentation was recounted (since pulled at Microsoft's request) this weekend. During the event, WPSauce heard from attendee Karthik Ragubathy that "the next release," possibly Tango, would support truly native apps for the first time. The approach would let apps optimize for performance without having to be written using XNA code intended for games.
Utility works with Microsoft's XNA dev kit
Developers may soon be able to take advantage of a new tool designed to port Xbox and Windows games to a variety of other popular platforms, including iOS, Android and web browsers.The utility, labeled ExEn, works with Microsoft's XNA software development kit, which is utilized by developers to create games for Xbox Live and Windows.
MS hoping outright cash will get iPhone app ports
Microsoft is outright paying iPhone developers to port apps to Windows Phone 7, one account of the process claimed today. The unnamed programmer said he was offered immediate money to convert games. How much wasn't mentioned; it was "substantial" but not enough to lure over PocketGamer's source.
Leak has MS dropping dual-screen Courier
Microsoft has killed its Courier dual-screen tablet before it even became a real product, reports from within the company said. CEO Steve Ballmer told the Courier team on Wednesday that the project would "no longer be supported" even though it had never been made public. The reasons why hasn't been divulged to Gizmodo or any other source so far.
OpenZDK developer platform for Zune created
For the first time, Microsoft's Zune platform has been explored to allow developers to take full advantage of the hardware specs without having to be limited by the XNA game development platform. The new SDK, dubbed OpenZDK, was built thanks to the work of several ZuneBoards members who include Itsnotabigtruck, Netrix, Nurta and the rest of the ZuneBoards Development Front. The hack can be applied to all Zune models, including the Zune HD, and doesn't require running jailbroken or otherwise hacked firmware.
Microsoft shows WP7 dev features at MIX10
Microsoft at its MIX10 developer event detailed some of how app development and sales will work for Windows Phone 7. Confirming that it's based on Silverlight and XNA, the mobile OS will fence off third-party apps from true native code but will give them access to all the key features: it will recognize accelerometers, cameras and multi-touch gestures. WP7 will also mirror iPhone development by using background push notification for those not allowed to multitask and include a general location service that any app can use.
Zune HD sequel may use phone OS roots
Microsoft's decision to drop the Zune HD from its XNA development kit may actually be hints at plans for its sequel, leaks indicated on Tuesday. Multiple sources toldZDNet that the follow-up touchscreen player will be "similar to an iPod touch," indicating a more general-purpose role than the media-heavy Zune HD. With Windows Phone 7 as the only known mobile OS supported by XNA 4.0, the shift implies that Microsoft may use a variant of its phone OS to drive the next Zune.
Microsoft says WP7 to have broad app base
(Update: unified Windows/Xbox gaming added) Microsoft on Friday outlined some of its hopes for Windows Phone 7 in an interview (viewable below). The company's Charlie Kindel argues that third-party app development for the Silverlight-, Windows CE- and XNA-based is "very easy" and has already shown off some of the first non-default apps for the platform. Flashlight, level, and weather apps have been shown and, in the case of the level, have direct access to the phone's accelerometer in a way not possible with Windows Mobile 6.
Windows Phone 7 may be deliberate step backwards
Microsoft may consciously limit Windows Phone 7 in its attempt to compete against Apple, a leak sent out today claims. Echoing some previous reports, a source says WP7 will have a Zune-like interface at many levels but goes on to say this will extend to the underlying framework as well. It would drop multitasking and instead pause apps, using an iPhone-like push notification system to handle new updates.