4,000 Apps in Windows Phone Marketplace

The Cloud hub for Windows Phone 7 applications is growing into a mature ecosystem, now featuring 4,000 items submitted by in excess of 18,000 developers.

Todd Brix, Senior Director for Windows Marketplace at Microsoft confirmed the numbers, indicating that there’s growing excitement from the developers, and that the Redmond company is working to improve their experience as much as possible.

One of the changes catalyzed by feedback involves the streamlining of the developer registration and app submission process.

Enhancements have been rolling out since the Windows Phone Marketplace went live a few months ago, and have been fueled by input from developers. The latest improvements went live on December 9th.

Brix enumerated “a few examples of some of the other fixes and enhancements that we have made recently thanks to specific developer feedback.

•Developers from certain countries were reporting issues with postal code rules that were not applicable to their locale. We re-structured these rules to accommodate developers from these regions and they are now able to register successfully.

•When re-submitting an application, the steps were unclear to many developers and resulted in the erroneous impression that the submission process was completed, when it was not. We changed the workflow and improved the App Hub UI with a concise 5 step process.

•We’ve also made several other smaller enhancements that improve the robustness, performance and usability as well.”

Fact is that just by looking at the statistics it’s clear that the Redmond company has put a lot of effort into simplifying the work that developers need to do in order to get apps on the marketplace.

It’s important to note that the software giant has accelerated the dev registration, but also the process required to have a new Windows Phone 7 application published and available to the public.

“Over the last month, 91% of applications have been certified and published within 2 days of submission, and 86% of the 1,000+ new developers that register in App Hub every week now have their account vetted and validated within 10 days,” Brix added.

Work done to support mobile developers also involves offering them the tools necessary to monetize their work beyond actually charging for the apps.

The most recent release of the Microsoft Advertising SDK for Windows Phone 7 enables devs to put advertisements into not only Silverlight apps, but also XNA Framework content, especially games.

In addition, Microsoft now serves App Performance Reporting Data to devs. The “Reports” link on the App Hub allows developers to get insight into Downloads Reports and Payout Reports.

Speaking of payouts, developers will see their first money from the Windows Phone Marketplace starting with the fourth week of January 2011, for the period October – December 2010. Moving onward into 2011, payouts will be offered on a monthly basis.

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