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WP7 Tools Receive Finishing Touch

· Mobile Zone
Today the final 'release to manufacturing' version of the Windows Phone 7 developer tools arrived with about 1-2 months before the first Windows Phones ship.  Microsoft says the marketplace will open in less than a month.  According to rumors, the first WP7 handset release dates are in October for Europe and in November for the US.  We can surely expect handsets to be available just in time for the holiday season.  A 'soft-launch' of the OS is scheduled for October 11.

The beta tools, which have been out for many months, have served early access developers well in building up the app reservoir for this newcomer mobile OS.  Twitter, OpenTable, Flixter, Netflix, and Travelocity already have working apps for the new platform.  

The WP7 tool pack includes an express version of Visual Studio 2010, an emulator, Expression Blend 4 for Windows Phone, Xbox's XNA Game Studio 4.0 development platform, and a Bing maps SDK.  Microsoft has also released a separate Silverlight toolkit for WP7.  It's great news for Silverlight developers who want to move into other areas with those skills.

Here is an unconfirmed demo on HTC's first WP7:


As if that wasn't enough, Microsoft also released their mobile advertising SDK for WP7 and the Microsoft Advertising Exchange for Mobile.  The Exchange is a "real-time bidded ad exchange" for building ad-supported applications.

Download the final version of the developer tools here.  Here are the release notes
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