expected, Microsoft has launched the PC based shopping and account management
Marketplace for Mobile. Starting today, Windows Mobile 6.5 Windows phone
customers can browse, buy and download applications online at the Windows
Marketplace for Mobile site, straight from the PC. The selected applications are
delivered wirelessly to the customer's Windows phone and install the next time
the Windows Marketplace client runs on the smartphone. This creates another way
for customers to easily find and purchase applications and gives developers a
whole new level of exposure.
Todd Brix, Senior Director for
Mobile Platform Services Product Management at Microsoft writes at the
Windows Blog: "Marketplace has been extremely active and I couldn't
be happier with the reactions from both developers and customers. We've been
open for just over one month and already we can see that there's demand for
an application marketplace that doesn't compromise on quality or experience.
I look forward to providing a more detailed update on Windows Marketplace
for Mobile when we extend the service to Windows Mobile 6.0 and 6.1
customers later this month."
Today's update also provides more advanced anti-piracy protection. While the
underlying technical changes will be transparent for customers, developers will
now be able to take advantage of these new protections by following the steps
outlined in this
anti-piracy whitepaper (PDF). As always, updates to existing applications
can be submitted for free.
A PC interface for the Windows Marketplace for Mobile is definitely a worth
upgrade and makes the marketplace somewhat unique since neither Apple nor Google
or Palm offers such a web interface for their smartphones. Unfortunately,
Microsoft keeps the country restrictions even with the web-based Marketplace for
Mobile which means German customers can see German applications only, US
customers can see US applications only, and so on. Hopefully this will change
soon as well.
UPDATE: I've completely overseen that the web-based Marketplace for
Mobile indeed features the option to switch to another country's Marketplace. By
default, the appropriate Marketplace is shown, based on the user's country of
access but it's possible to change the Marketplace using the drop-down menu in
Cheers ~ Arne