Microsoft appear set to cut the next release of their Software Development Kit (SDK) for Windows Phone very close to the bone. The SDK contains all the tools necessary to create the latest and greatest Apps for Windows Phone. Presently the kit is current to Windows 7.5 Mango – and only weeks ago via a Chinese website the incomplete next version, for Windows Phone 8 was leaked to the world. With Nokia and Microsoft holding a joint media event on September 5th (US time) in New York, it is expected that Windows Phone 8 and Nokia’s newest devices will be revealed to the world – and yet no SDK has been released to allow Dev’s to get started on WP8 Apps/Games. Here at WPDownUnder, the word on the street (location services disabled to protect sources) is that the beta SDK is set for official release shortly after.
The leaked SDK has already been discussed at length on any number of Blogs. Thanks to one of our readers, we have a number of screenshots demonstrating some of the new capabilities Developers can use to deliver feature-rich Apps for the next evolution of Windows Phone.
The new SDK brings a raft of new features, from screen resolutions, start screen changes (tile sizing), API’s and functionality for Windows Phone 8. However, with the first Windows Phone 8 devices likely set for a media launch and platform launch in the September 5 Microsoft and Nokia joint event, the question remains – when will the SDK be available to Developers to begin updating their Mango Apps or starting new projects to make the most of WP8?
The date WPDownUnder has been hearing this week for the SDK Beta release is…..September 7th. This would place it within a couple of days of the New York Sep 5th event, and assuming even a minimum of a month or 4 weeks, push general availability of Windows Phone 8 devices to a minimum of Week 1 October. Assuming an 8 week gap (a more reasonable time for Dev’s to get cracking with the new SDK) – and we move into November for general advice availability for WP8, following WIndows 8 and Microsoft Surface RT’s October 26th general release date.
Of course, Windows Phone 8 will be for new devices only – and Microsoft have pretty much confirmed their priority is understandably WP8 RTM – and that the cosmetic update 7.8 to existing Mango handsets (primarily Tile size changes for the home screen) will follow this some time. Working on typical staggered update launches and carrier delays…this would then be a November roadmap at best in our view.
So, a lot of “what if’s” there – however one thing we have heard more strongly remains the 7th SEP date for the WP8 SDK beta release to Developers….Time will tell.