Why there are no serious WP7 apps.

Created by Peter Kankowski
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Thoughts on Windows Phone 7

There were sophisticated third-party applications for Windows Mobile 6:

Python 2.5 on Windows Mobile Viewing and rotating photos in XnView Python reference in CHM format Plotting, integrating, and solving equations in SpaceTime

Why there are no such things for Windows Phone 7? Because Microsoft disallows native-code applications on this platform. Everything should be written in C# (or VB .NET).

Note that all applications listed above were ported from desktop Windows to WM 6. Most of them were written in C/C++ and implemented complex functionality (reading different image formats, interpreting Python, solving equations, etc.)

Microsoft talks about porting your applications to C#, while it's really not porting, but rewriting. You cannot easily “port” thousands lines of code from C/C++ to C#.

That's why there is no Skype on Windows Phone 7. That's also why SoftMaker is developing a new version of their office suite for Android, not for Windows Phone 7.

I first expressed these thoughts to a friend in June 2010. It was not evident then what will be the leading smartphone OS. Now Android is taking the market, and, IMHO, it's a good time to learn about writing apps for it.

Update June 2012: it was announced that Windows Phone 8 will support native code apps and will have the same kernel as the desktop Windows.

Peter Kankowski
Peter Kankowski

About the author

Peter is the developer of Aba Search and Replace, a tool for replacing text in multiple files. He likes to program in C with a bit of C++, also in x86 assembly language, Python, and PHP.

Created by Peter Kankowski
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