An Interview with WP7 Developer Christopher from Aevi Games

1)Have you developed Apps for any other platforms before? If Yes What are they?

   I have personally developed business applications for Microsoft Windows PCs and the Windows Mobile 6-series phones. I’ve even written software using the .NET Micro Framework, which was an interesting experience. The Micro Framework is really awesome for robotics and ultra-small devices. You can have a full blown web server running off a microchip smaller than your pinkie. In the business software world I wrote point of sale systems, intranet websites (asp.net), and miscellaneous utilities.

   The first game I coded, or rather, attempted to code, when I was sixteen and working with a friend of mine. It was an RPG using some basic sprites (animated images), but it never got anywhere near finished. It was very fun though, video games are enjoyed by almost everyone, people are always interested in them and many want to be part of the creative process, business application development didn’t have nearly the same following, if any at all.

2)Why did you choose WP7 as a platform of your choice?

    Windows Phone 7 offered the huge opportunity to get into mobile market with applications, and as I already knew how to develop applications for Microsoft Windows (using .NET), it was really the opportunity of a lifetime. Even more so because this wasn’t going to be the same Microsoft Mobile OS that had been on the market for a while, this was something brand new, a mobile OS that had the full power of Microsoft’s marketing and development team behind it. Microsoft said that they won’t let this phone fail, and from what I’ve seen, there’s no reason it should.

3)Which one do you think as the single most feature you liked in WP7?

    Honestly, the speed and smoothness (solid OS + good hardware specifications). Microsoft is working closely to make sure these phones are powerful, and run really well. A friend of mine got to utilize a prototype and said the interface was very smooth, no hiccups, and that was just a prototype – I imagine the final builds will be even more refined.

    I’m happy Microsoft went a step further and built it from the ground up to utilize Silverlight applications – most of which can easily implement cool transition effects paired with a simple interface that makes this phone a worthy, and fresh, competitor in the mobile marketplace.

4)Are you satisfied with WP7 Platform development tools?

    For the most part, yes. The emulator isn’t fully loaded with the apps a real phone will have, so I’ve had a couple minor issues, but nothing devastating. One problem I ran into is that applications, per Microsoft’s guidelines, have to ensure that they don’t interfere with music that is already being played by the user through the media player or Zune, but those music applications aren’t on the emulator, so there’s no ‘true’ way to test your music non-interference code.

5)What are the Apps you are developing now in WP7?Details on the Apps?

    We’ve got a couple games coming down the pipeline, in a couple days we expect to release our first video demo of a kid’s game called Bee’s ABCs that will run on the WP7. We figured there have to be a few parent’s out there who may need to briefly entertain their children, we might as well provide a game that can do that and is educational.

    After that we have a space-invaders-like game next, followed by a tower defence game. We’re still working out the details on those though.

6)In what way Microsoft can improve their WP7 or What does WP7 lacks from?

    They did a really good job with this phone and the OS, I don’t see anything lacking except for cross-app copy and paste which may or may not be there soon, it’s hard to tell with all the rumours flying around, this isn’t a huge deal since the phone is relatively smart and can ‘sense’ what you are trying to do, but it is something that needs to be put in place eventually. The early iPhones also were missing copy and paste as well, and people still loved them.

7)Future Plans of you?

      We plan on targeting the PC and Xbox game markets in the near future, but we wanted to be ready for the phone launch with some great games. At this point,  we are really hoping Microsoft delivers a large enough advertising campaign to revitalize their position against their popular competitors.

Wow. Lots of apps in your pipeline. Thanks Christopher for sharing with us.

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