Jerry Nixon @Work: Get Into the Store Now: Windows 8 Metro Application Developer

Jerry Nixon on Windows

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Get Into the Store Now: Windows 8 Metro Application Developer

In a recent article on the Windows Store for Developers blog, Antoine Leblond write on Windows Store expanding to new markets. There he said:

Up to now, the Consumer Preview Store has supported app submissions from developers in five markets, each with a dedicated app catalog (France, Germany, India, Japan and the United States), plus China. Customers outside of those markets see our “Rest of World” catalog. This is a start, and we’re pleased to have served so many millions this early in the release.

In the next significant preview release of the Windows Store service, we will significantly expand our global coverage. We will add 33 additional app submission locales for developers, bringing our total to 38 supported markets for submitting Metro style apps for Windows 8. We will also expand the number of market-specific app catalogs, from 5 to 26.

In addition we will expand the localization coverage of the pre-release developer portal as well, adding 7 new languages. When we release the next update to the Store service, you’ll be able to submit Metro style pre-release apps in any of 109 languages, as long as the app also includes a version in one of 12 app certification languages (an increase of 7 languages from the Consumer Preview).

To submit you need a token

Jaime Rodriguez spells it out clearly on his blog. There are a few easy steps to follow:

Follow these steps to get invited to an App Excellence lab:

  1. Create a really great Windows 8 Metro app (or game). 
  2. Get it as ready as if you were submitting to the store.
  3. If you know your evangelists (maybe because you attended a Windows Camp training), get in touch with them and ask them to nominate your app for a lab.
  4. If you don’t know your evangelist, email the following to
    1. Your name
    2. City & country where you are located
    3. Brief description for your app (no binary,  screenshot is optional, but only send if the screenshot is public, non-confidential stuff )
    4. Your pledge that you’ve spent at least 8 hours devouring all the great UX guidelines we have at the design section in the Windows Dev Center
    5. Wait for our response letting you know where the closest app excellence lab will be and how to get in touch with the right evangelist to nominate you.

Hopefully, there will be a lab near you.  Right now, we have labs in 40+ countries and we may be adding more.

Of course, coming to the lab is not all you have to do.  I have to go back to step #1: You need to have a compelling, functional app that follows our UX guidelines, our performance best practices, and our store certification requirements.

The lab is a 4-hour engagement with a trained Microsoft Services Engineer.  This person will run your app through a series of tests based on a quality checklist to ensure your app is (or will be) in top-notch shape when you submit. You will also get a chance discuss ways to make your app even better and you will get answers to any questions you might have.

If your app meets the criteria, then booyah! You get a token to register your developer account and (once you have been verified and all that) you will be able to submit your app to the Windows store.

If your app does not meet the criteria, nothing is lost. You will still end up with a much better app and you will be able to submit it when registration opens for all developers.