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MS Dev Speaks More on WP7

On Friday Brandon Watson of MS gave held a one hour live chat. I know some other sites have written up on it but I think there are a few things missed. And I also want to thank MS for this event as I actually had three of my submitted questions answered so it was great to get some answers on question I was having. Anyway, let’s do this:

First off there will not be vpn access out of the box. This was one of my questions and the answer suggests that the business features like this will come later. There are third party VPN clients for WM now so I’d expect someone to port it to WP7 to fill this void. 

Silverlight will not work in browser on day one. We know that IE will be upgradable OTA so that’s likely on the short list when they can integrate them.

I had asked about the ability to multitask, specifically regarding Skype and Pandora and the like. The answer did not include either name but it was stated that for now there will not be access to multitasking even for those apps but that’s likely going to change.

Developers will be able to get their hands on devices soon. I presume we’re talking about the larger companies here and that’s probably why we’re seeing devices floating around.

The empty space on the right side of the home page is implicitly locked to devs but there is a possibility for a Zune quicklaunch or recent apps to go there. This was also a question I asked cause I hate that dead area and would love a way to skip a track from the home page and not take an extra step of going through the tile.

I was pleased to hear that the marketplace will not be like the other marketplaces out there. They will not merely rank by total sales. They’re going to get rankings that include things like what’s hot so if an app gets an update or a blog reviews it and suddenly it has a lot of sales then they’ll recognize that and promote the app. I like that because right now a market with 100,000 apps means thousands of buried apps.

Confirming what we knew, there will never (never) be the ability to install 6.5 apps (cab files) on WP7. I can live with that. It’s a clean break.

He’s using a WP7 device himself as his main device (HD2 as a backup) but he wouldn’t show it:) It does confirm how far the builds is though.

There will be a Facebook app (implicitly confirmed) but we’ve already shown you that;)

There’s no local storage that is shared at this time and you can’t email an attachment to open with a 3rd party program. Local storage is something they’ll likely be opening soon since devs are demanding it.

Unlike Apple that has said that they care about the how their apps are written and they must be natively written (and without an engine for example) MS is explicitly going to permit the opposite so it should be easier to write apps in the future.

Overall it was a pretty interesting interview and Brandon is a great spokesperson for MS. I like their continued openness and they really covered a lot of base with this event. It also makes the end user feel like they’re being listened to.

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