PSA: Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace will shut down May 9

Microsoft has been sending out emails today informing customers that the Windows Mobile Marketplace will be completely shut down on May 9 this year. Of course, this only applies to the ill-fated marketplace for the old Windows Mobile 6.x operating system, which never really got much traction and peaked at around 7000 available apps, despite there being many more WM6 applications distributed through third-party sites and forums such as xda-developers.

The Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace launched in late 2009, only to be obsoleted by the introduction of Windows Phone 7 a few months later at 2010’s Mobile World Congress. App submissions were disabled last July, and considering the eroding marketshare of Windows Mobile, which is unfortunately losing users faster than Windows Phone gaining them right now, shutting down a non-essential service that few people are using should help keep resources focused.

Of course, you’ll still be able to use any apps you previously downloaded, but it won’t be possible to reinstall any applications after a hard-reset, nor will you be able to download any new ones. Full text of the email after the break.

Windows Marketplace for Mobile 6.x Discontinuation Notice

March 8, 2012

Dear Windows Mobile 6.x customer:

Microsoft is discontinuing the Windows Marketplace for Mobile service for Windows Mobile 6.x. Please review the details below to familiarize yourself with the changes:

Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace Service To Be Discontinued

Beginning May 9, 2012, the Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace service will no longer be available. Starting on this date, you will no longer be able to browse, buy or download applications directly on your Windows Mobile 6.x phone using the Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace application and service.

Applications and games acquired from the Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace service installed on your Windows Mobile 6.x phone will continue to work after the service is discontinued on May 9, 2012. However, additional downloads of these applications and games from the Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace service will no longer be available.

Take Action

Microsoft recommends you review the applications or games installed on your Windows Mobile 6.x phone and install any available updates in advance of the Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace service shut-down on May 9, 2012.

Please note: All phone data, including applications acquired through the Windows Mobile 6.x Marketplace service, data and user-specific settings, will be deleted from your Windows Mobile 6.x phone in the event that your phone is wiped or “hard reset.” Any data on a removable storage card, if present, will also be deleted if your phone is wiped or “hard reset”.

Windows Mobile applications and games that are compatible with Windows Mobile 6.x may still be available directly from their developers or via third-party marketplaces.

Thank you for your continued support of Windows Phone.

-The Windows Phone Team

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