Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) is making it easier for people to create applications for Windows Phone with the release of an online tool that would enable even non-developers to create programs for the mobile operating system.
Windows Phone App Studio beta version is now available for free.
In taking this path, it is clear that Microsoft aims to entice more developers to create apps for its mobile OS in other to attract more customer interest towards its Windows Phone devices.
The Windows Phone App Store hosts some 145,000 apps. That’s still way behind Android’s 819,000 apps and the 900,000 for Apples iOS for the iPhone and iPad.
In the second quarter of 2013, about 8.9 million Windows Phones were sold, up from 5.6 million units for the same period last year.
No less than 182.6 million Android phones and 31.2 million iPhones were sold, for the second quarter of 2013.
Brix said the new Web-based app tool is made up of a set of customizable templates. The tool allows users to run the apps they’ve created directly on a phone, share it to others or provide the source code for further development in Visual Studio or another development environment.
“Getting started is easy – just create a Microsoft account, chose your template, and begin adding your content,” Brix said. “Windows Phone Studio does the rest. When you’re app is ready to go, you can download the app to your own phone, or share it with others by publishing to the Windows Phone store.”
Microsoft also simplified its developer phone registration process. Now, developers can unlock and register one phone to load up to two applications. Registered developers with Dev Centre accounts continue to have the option to unlock up to three phones and upload up to 10 apps on each.
The software company is also offer a $19 Summer Break Dev Centre registration fee until August 26.
This week, Microsoft also opened six new markets at the Dev. Centre, bringing the total markets supporting payouts to 128. The new markets are in Costa Rica, Cyprus, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Malta and Trinidad and Tobago. Developers in these markets will be able to submit both free and paid apps to the Windows Phone Store.