For Developers: Tutorial on customizing live tiles

Live Tiles on Windows Phone 7

On Windows Phone 7 developers only have 2 options for communicating with users when their application is not currently running (which is any time it does not actually have focus).  Live Tiles are the most interesting method, promising a low-resource method for engaging the user.

Unfortunately there are only 3 ways an applications Live Tile can be customized – the text, a count (the blue circle) and a background image. Like us, Chris Koenig, Senior Developer Evangelist with Microsoft, agrees that the background image, which can be fetched from a remote server, is the most promising as an information-rich channel for communicating with the user.

In his tutorial linked below provides a step by step run down of creating a live tile with a custom background, rendered dynamically on the server, that allows much more information to be pushed to the user more attractively than simply modifying the count and the text.

Read the full tutorial here.

The obvious tiles are weather, news, stocks and maybe twitter updates. What other kind of Live Tiles would our readers want to see.  Let us know below.

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