Get extra WP7 controls with the Silverlight Toolkit for Windows Phone 7

Today saw the RTW/RTM of the Windows Phone 7 developer tools – you can check out the highlights.

In addition, Microsoft Silverlight toolkit team has also added a Silverlight Toolkit for Windows Phone 7 on codeplex.

Check out the details at Tim Heuer’s blog.

You’ll get these controls along with their code and samples on how to use them…

ToggleSwitch

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Content Menu (which zooms the the rest of the screen back a little and support ICommand !!)

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Date/Time Picker

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Wrap Panel

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Gesture Helper (that you simply embed inside other XAML elements and write event handlers for)

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Highlights of What’s new in the Windows Phone 7 Developer Tools RTM/RTW

It’s a big day for Microsoft and I’ve had a great ride to this point.

The RTM of the Windows Phone 7 Developer Tools have now been released.

See the update MSDN documentation.

Get the toolsBe sure to correctly uninstall previously installed versions of the tools (see the release notes) before installing.

Read the release notes.

Let’s take a look at the highlights of what’s new in RTM of the WP7 Developer Tools, largely from a Silverlight application development point of view.

Panorama Control

There have been a few 3rd party open source goes at a Panorama Control (and no-one can blame them for getting a little impatient – it’s like the Office ribbon), but now there’s an official one (which was explain recently in a blog entry by Jeff Wilcox).  You can include one by starting with the new dedicate Visual Studio template (under File->New Project), use the one in the toolbox, or add it via XAML.  See the documentation.  Use it to get UI like this:

Ff941104.83abaa3d-63cc-4424-b8ff-3c5ceca759c4(en-us,VS.92).jpg

Pivot Control

The new official Pivot control is just as easy to use.  See the documentation to produce things like this:

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Bing Maps Silverlight Control for Windows Phone

While the previously available control worked on the phone, it was not optimized for the phone.  This new version rocks!  Check out the docs.  You’ll also want to get yourself a developer key.

Ff941093.10d7071a-c8bf-4a96-85d0-651438c449a6(en-us,VS.92).jpg

Other changes:

The tools and emulator have performance improvements.  Check out Microsoft’s paper on creating high performing Silverlight apps.

The documentation has been updated.

Be sure to read the release notes.

What’s missing to round out the platform? 

I’ll do another post on this topic soon.

My ride with Windows Phone 7

Today is the official day for the RTM of the Windows Phone 7 Developer Tools.

It’s a big day for Microsoft.

It’s been a big few weeks for me too recently.  I’ve just finished training dozens of developers in the first WP7 professional training event across North America.  I’ve recorded a few Dot Net Rocks TV episodes, presented and attended WP7 events with Microsoft (and more to come), and have been asked to author various articles. 

I’ve had the luxury (and support from Microsoft Canada) of having a developer device in my hands for a week or two and continue to have access to devices on occasion.  I’ve seen the device app-deployment unlock process and seen the RTM tools for a little while pre-release.  I did see quality, performance and personal preference differences between devices from a couple of phone manufacturers, but I can’t detail those as they were all prototype devices.  I’m looking forward to seeing the retail devices, and I think most of you will be quite satisfied.

I’m now quite familiar with the phone UI and interactions – it really doesn’t take long to get used to it.

I’m enjoying the ride.  I’ve been fortunate.

By the way, I’ve also had a go on a Kinect device and then pre-ordered mine right away – it’s worth it for the exercise alone!

I’d like to thank a few people at Microsoft Canada:

  • Joey deVilla – Microsoft blogger extraordinaire, go-to man for help getting your WP7 apps to marketplace, promoter of my boot camps and generous ring master of devices
  • Christian Beauclair – his mastery of the Microsoft way made it possible for he and I to have device access and enjoy a couple of trips to Montreal sharing the experience with developers there
  • Rick Claus – his generosity ensured I could keep my word with boot camp trainees
  • John Bristowe – pointing some great opportunities my way
  • John Oxley – for having my back and approving all the best parts

I’d also like to thank Carl Franklin at dnrTV and Nitin Bharti at DZone.

I’ll be giving back over the next few months by continuing to share what I’ve learnt at public events and on this blog.

A Big Day for Windows Phone 7

It’s a big day today for Microsoft with the RTM of the Windows Phone 7 developer tools – potentially the last kick at the can for raising a successful mobile platform, at least amongst the current market competitors.

Update: The tools are not available – get the highlights.  A CodePlex-hosted toolkit of additional controls is also available.

There has been a lot of buzz and packed-out WP7 events, but success will likely – rightly or wrongly -  be measured publically in terms of how many phones are sold, how many applications are published and how many applications are bought; and all against what iPhone has achieved.

Microsoft has a lot of money to spend on this launch, though my sense is that the spend will occur closer to device launch (late Oct/early Nov) and during H1 2011.  The compressed catch-up timescale has created the sense of a developer-device shortage. 

Microsoft’s OS development track has been very short, and there would not normally be an abundance of devices at this stage.  The problem is that the absolute timing is very close to the festive season and Microsoft has been rallying developers since February this year, creating an expectation of device access.  Also, one cannot discount the ‘have-to-hold-one’ feeling that people have, though my experience having one in hand to show people is that they are not that quick to have a go. 

The WP7 emulator (available for some time!) is an amazing thing (more adept than Virtual PC in some ways) and is likely sufficient for 90% of Silverlight applications and some XNA games (single-touch).  The emulator’s usefulness wanes when developing applications with multi-touch input unless the developer has a multi-touch display.  Also, anything with high performance animation or intense XNA games requires a real device to get a true sense of real-world performance. 

I’ll sum up device timing issues by saying, that if you are willing to invest in a application development track at the same speed that Microsoft is going (which is a new standard for Microsoft), then they’ll likely work with you to get you what you need to publish on time.

If you haven’t been involved with the WP7 euphoria yet, then you may easily fall into it.  The way I see it, most people out there are well on their way to being 100% WP7 developers and I now tend to break it down like this:

  • 25% if you are a .NET developer already
  • 25% if you are a Silverlight/WPF developer
  • 25% if you develop web services
  • 25% left over that is unique to the phone

There’s quite a lot in that last 25% and you’ll need to get up to speed on two major pieces to really work well on the platform:

  • Application Life Cycle – your application will fail miserably in the user’s eyes if you don’t support the necessary events
  • Push Notification Services – to keep data updated and get events from elsewhere you need to understand the mechanisms

Of course, having already training dozen of developers in the first professional WP7 boot camp across North America, I’m available for children’s birthday parties private training (which are the same thing once you’ve seen super hero training at a birthday party Smile) – see the about page – if your company needs to get up to speed quickly.

The developer tools are FREE – go and get them when they are released later today at http://developer.windowsphone.com.

3 Windows Phone 7 Developer events in Ottawa this coming week with a Developer Device!

3 Important Windows Phone 7 Events in Ottawa featuring a real developer device…

1 Microsoft Canada Windows Phone 7 Ottawa Deployment Clinic – Sep 1st 2010

So you have a WP7 application in development, but you need to see how it works on a real device ahead of the marketplace opening in October?

The emulator currently available as part of the Windows Phone Developer Tools Beta, provides a great testing environment for many, but not all, of the platform’s features.  The capabilities of your application may necessitate testing on a real device.  Devices are available to purchase at retail in the November so you may need access to a real device for testing in the meantime.

Over the next few months Microsoft Canada will be holding a series events in Ottawa where you can try out your WP7 apps on a real device.

The first one will be held at the Microsoft Ottawa office (5th floor at the World Exchange Plaza) on Wed Sep 1 2010.  To request a testing slot, please contact Christian Beauclair, let him know about your application and why you’d like to test on a real device.  You should bring along a developer machine if you’d like to make revisions while testing.

Not ready to test on a device yet?  Future events will be held at the office and at coffee and code events around town.  Watch http://colinizer.com and http://blogs.msdn.com/b/cdndevs/ for details.

2 DevTeach Windows Phone 7 Boot Camp Sep 2nd/3rd 2010

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The phone tools RTM on Sep 16th, the marketplace opens in October and devices expected in November.

Do you have?

· The developer knowledge to build apps for this platform

· Access to device to test your application

· Assistance with getting your application in the marketplace.

With this boot camp you get::

· 2 solid workshop days to rapidly build your WP7 Developer knowledge and beyond – covering major topics in depth, samples, exercises and expertise in Microsoft technologies

· Face-time with a developer device

· 50!! Demos/Examples

· Priority invite to Microsoft Canada’s deployment clinics to test your application(s) on a real device unless you have a relationship with Microsoft, these events may be your only opportunity before retail device availability!!!

· FREE go-to-marketplace support from Microsoft to get your application into the marketplace and potential promotion – you’ll be connected with a Microsoft evangelist to help you with getting your application(s) into the marketplace with potential for application promotional

· Information, 40+ samples & exercises to walk away with

Register today!  Use the code WP7BOOTCAMP to save $100.

http://winphone7bootcamp.com

3 Microsoft Canada Windows Phone 7 Night in Ottawa (featuring a developer device!) – Sep 2nd 2010

Join Christian Beauclair & Rick Claus from Microsoft Canada, along with Colin Melia from DreamDigital, for an evening about Windows Phone 7 in the flesh.  That’s right, they’ll be there in person, oh and so will a real developer device!

In October, Microsoft will start accepting application submissions on the mobile marketplace for Windows Phone 7 applications, with devices being available at retail shortly thereafter.

Will you be one of the first developers selling a cool application? Are you an IT Pro that wants to figure out how these devices fit into your organization?  To get to grips with this new mobile platform and build on your existing .NET and infrastructure knowledge, you’ll need to know the features of the new phone platform.

Visual Studio 2010 together with the WP7 tools make building applications a delightful experience. During this evening event, you’ll have the opportunity to see the phone in action, learn about the tools and understand how the phone integrates into your enterprise.

You absolutely must be registered to attend.

Register here: https://www.clicktoattend.com/invitation.aspx?code=150519

In-Depth Developer Training, Samples, Marketplace Assistance, Promotion, Device Face-Time & Loaner Device Access for Windows Phone 7

Windows Phone 7 devices are coming to market this Oct/Nov in several markets.

Time is running out to get in on the launch and test device access is vital for some applications.

Get these benefits from the Windows Phone 7 Boot Camp that I’m running, sponsored by Microsoft at their Canadian offices:

  • 2 solid workshop days to rapidly build your WP7 Developer knowledge and beyond – covering major topics in depth, samples, exercises and expertise in Microsoft technologies
  • 50!! Demos/Examples
  • Priority invite to Microsoft Canada’s deployment clinics to test your application(s) on a real device unless you have a relationship with Microsoft, this may be your only opportunity before retail device availability!!!
  • FREE go-to-marketplace support from Microsoft to get your application into the marketplace and potential promotion – you’ll be connected with a Microsoft evangelist to help you with getting your application(s) into the marketplace with potential for application promotional
  • Information, 40+ samples & exercises to walk away with

Due to a shortage with devices, Microsoft Canada has withdrawn the loaner program (substituting the deployment clinics) and a device cannot be present in all bootcamp cities.

There are many free resources on the web, but none offer these benefits along with interactive learning.

Want More?  How about, all this for less?  Use the promo code WP7BOOTCAMP to get $100 off.

Register today.

Get Ahead With In-Depth Developer Training & Early Device Access for Windows Phone 7

The current Windows Phone 7 rumour-mill currently has:

  • Sept 2010Oct 2010 Confirmed by Microsoft – Mobile Marketplace opens for Windows Phone 7 application submissions
  • Sep 16th 2010 Confirmed by Microsoft – Tools RTM
  • Oct 2010 – Windows Phone 7 devices retail in Europe
  • Nov 2010 – Windows Phone 7 devices retail in North America

Are you ready to ride this huge opportunity?

To be at the front of the line you’ll need these key things:

  • WP7 Developer Knowledge and beyond

    The developer tools for basic WP7 application are free and easy to start with.  That’s a great story for your fart application, but not for building fully cloud-integrated applications where you have to build cloud services and/or understand the cloud space, especially if you want to use notification services.  You’ll need in-depth knowledge for this and expertise extending all the way to developing for 3-screen & the cloud in some cases.  Plus, do you really have weeks to spend researching all this stuff?

  • Access to Windows Phone 7 devices to test your application(s)

    The developer tools for WP7 include an emulator which provides a great experience, far more useful that its predecessor for Windows Mobile 6.x, and even more graphically powerful that Virtual PC since it integrates with the host’s graphical hardware acceleration and multi-touch (if available).

    However, the tools will not allow you to get a good sense of performance, test under real network conditions, or get real data from built-in devices like the accelerometer, GPS, compass, and multi-touch (this last one would require a multi-touch capable developer machine).  If you are building a game (with XNA) for WP7, you definitely want to get your hands on some real hardware.

    Do you have access to a device before retail availability?

  • Assistance with getting your application into the marketplace and potential promotion

You can get help with these things by attending the Windows Phone 7 Boot Camp that I’m running Smile

Boot Camp participants get:

2 solid in-depth workshop days covering major topics in depth, samples, exercises and expertise in Microsoft technologies at Microsoft offices – see agenda below

50+ Demos/examples

40+ Samples

Priority invite to Microsoft Canada’s deployment clinics, for invaluable application testing on a real device.  Unless you have a relationship with Microsoft, this may be your only opportunity before retail device availability!!!

FREE go-to-marketplace support from Microsoft – you’ll be connected with a Microsoft evangelist to help you with getting your application(s) into the marketplace with potential for promotional assistance

Due to a shortage with devices, Microsoft Canada has withdrawn the loaner program (substituting the deployment clinics) and a device cannot be present in all bootcamp cities.

Want More?  How about, all this for less?  Use the promo code WP7BOOTCAMP to get $100 off.

 

A whole new market is approaching…  Register today.

If the package, location, timing or content does not suit you and/or you want a tailored training experience, go ahead and contact me.

Current Agenda

Day 1 Day 2

Getting Started

Tools

Hardware

Emulator

Architecture

Application Types

Services

 

Visual Basics

XAML

Controls

Layout

Drawing, Brushes, Styles, Resources, Media

 

Applications

Stack

Model

Projects

Navigation

Threading

 

Builds & Deployment

Debug

XAP Files

Deployment

Localisation

Porting, Compatibility & Re-use

 

Application Layouts

Orientation

Transforms

Hubs, Panorama & Pivot

 

Data Binding

Essentials, Hierarchies, Lists

Converters

LINQ

 

Data Services

Service Proxy

WebClient

HttpWebRequest

OData

Design

Guide

Theming

Blend

MVVM

Control Templates

 

Platform Integration

Launchers

Choosers

Application Bar

Settings

 

Device I/O

SIP

Touch

Accelerometer

Location Services

Network

Maps

 

Storage

Isolated Storage

Perst

Cloud

Syncing

 

Application Lifecycle

In-depth

 

Notification Services

In-depth

 

Performance

 

Web Integration

Browser Control

Integration

 

XNA

Basics

 

Marketplace

Registration

Requirements

Process

Live Meeting Presentation Today on Windows Phone 7 + OData + Silverlight + Azure

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I’m doing a 1.5 hour Live Meeting presentation today at 16:00 ET on these hot topics for the Windows Azure User Group

The audience objectives include:

  • Learn key features of Silverlight, OData & the Windows Azure Platform
  • Learn about preparing an application for use with Windows Azure & SQL Azure
  • Learn stages and ways to deploy a full application to the Windows Azure Platform
  • Learn how Silverlight can interact with Windows Azure Platform technologies.

Register for this hot-topic event and participate remotely.

https://www.clicktoattend.com/invitation.aspx?code=147804

If you are looking for in-depth rapid training on developing for Windows Phone 7 development AND hands-on time with a device, then you should consider registering for the this major 2-day boot camp running across Canada.

Windows Phone 7 Boot Camp

Quick-Start Primer Video to Windows Phone 7 Tools, Data Access and Notification Services

I recently did a 1-hour screencast interview with Carl Franklin for Dot Net Rocks TV.

It’s a good primer for a few areas of Windows Phone 7 developer.

20100720 video

If you are looking for in-depth rapid training on developing for Windows Phone 7 then you should consider registering for this first major boot camp running across Canada.

Windows Phone 7 Boot Camp

The recording was done using the April refresh of the tools.  I’ll be following up with another one soon using the Beta tools to explain things like themes and application life cycle in more detail.

We covered the tools…

20100720 tools

The emulator…

20100720 emulator

Project types…

20100720 project types

 

Visual Studio Tools…

20100720 vstools

Mapping Applications…

20100720 mapapp

Data Binding/Access… to a service exposed through Windows Azure AppFabric Service Bus

20100720 dataaccess

Notification Services which is essential to building applications that receive information from the cloud.

 

20100720 notification

Hopefully the video gives you a good sense of what is possible, and if you want this speed of knowledge transfer or faster… go for the bootcamp.

Windows Phone 7 Boot Camp