Microsoft is encouraging application developers to get apps for its latest version of the Windows Phone operating system into its Marketplace ASAP.
Matt Bencke, general manager at Microsoft, reminded developers in the company's Windows Phone blog today that AT&T has already announced its lineup of new phones that will run the next version of Windows Phone, dubbed Mango. And he encouraged them to get their apps in Microsoft's online application store, hinting that the update will be available very soon.
"The time to get your Mango apps into Marketplace is now," he said. "Existing customers will begin getting their OS update this fall. At a minimum it's worth updating your existing app now so that when customers experience Mango they benefit from 'fast app switching' multitasking, which requires little more than a recompile of the app. If you want to stand out from the crowd, get your apps updated to take advantage of other Mango features like Live Tiles and App Connect."
The company has been vague about when Windows Phone 7.5 will actually be released. But judging from the number of executives pushing developers to get their apps in the store right away, a launch of the new software is likely coming sooner rather than later.
Microsoft's director of Windows Phone program management, Joe Belfiore, linked to Bencke's blog post in a tweet today.
"Hey devs- we'd love you to get your apps updated to V7.1 and in marketplace *quite soon*! Just rebuild to enable MT."
Brandon Watson, Microsoft's senior director of Windows Phone 7 development, also emphasized the importance of getting Mango apps into the Marketplace as soon as possible in his tweet, which also linked to Bencke's blog post.
"I keep getting asked about when to submit your Mango apps...*cough* now *cough*"
Microsoft announced Mango in June. The upgrade includes more than 500 new features and is the biggest update to the platform since it was announced last year. In August, the company began accepting Mango apps to the Marketplace application store. At the time, it launched the final release candidate for the Windows Phone Software Development Kit 7.1, which allows software developers to create and publish apps directly to the Windows Phone Marketplace.
With all the pieces for the Mango launch in place, it seems likely that Microsoft will be pushing out the new update soon. The company's Build developer conference is currently going on in Anaheim, so stay tuned.