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What can't be fixed with money, can be fixed with more money - Microsoft goes all out with app development

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The old saying in the title applies perfectly to Microsoft, which is firmly decided to catch up for a “missed generation” (Ballmer quote) with Windows Phone 7. The Redmond software giant has a few months to ensure a steady stream of mobile applications which will enhance its WP7 devices.

Given the short timeframe, Microsoft has chosen the most direct approach to developers' hearts – cash. By providing them with free test devices and tools, covering development and marketing costs, or straight out guaranteeing app revenues, Microsoft outlays more financial incentives than it ever did with Windows Mobile. At least four of the big names in applications development have been approached and given the terms of the incentives, despite that they have their hands full with iOS and Android.

Windows Mobile had the best selection of third party apps before the iPhone altered the playing field, but they are mostly outdated, and not compatible with WP7. We can be fairly sure that right out of the box, Windows Phone 7 devices will join the immensely popular Microsoft ecosystem (Microsoft Office, Windows Live, Exchange, Hotmail, Bing Maps, Zune, Xbox Live), and play nice with your Windows rig. To reach the state of “there's an app for that”, however, Windows Phone 7 will have to attract developers, and Microsoft seems to be fully aware of the stakes.

source: Bloomberg

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