With Windows 7 mobile launching in October of this year, Microsoft has been busy putting on the final touches of their favored smart phone.
After giving all of their employees a free Windows 7 phone, Microsoft is now asking them to create apps for the Windows Market in their “spare time.”
Understand the unique value of Windows Phone 7 and evangelize to your customers, partners, friends and family! […]
Develop! With the help of the developer division, we just shipped the Final Beta of the Windows Phone Developer Tools. They absolutely rock, and you should download them nowÂ http://developer.windowsphone.com/. The package includes everything you need to start building apps. In addition, weâ€™ve introduced a new employee developer program which makes it much easier for you to develop apps for Marketplace in your spare time. (TechFlash)
Note: Emphasis mine.
Since both Apple and Android have attracted the “mind share” of most developers, Microsoft apparently is turning to its employees to create a robust ecosystem within the Windows Marketplace.
The company probably wants to avoid repeating Palm Pre’s failure by having a thriving market at launch instead of many months after.
Microsoft might be able to boost its app numbers by heavily courting developers from previous versions (windows 5.x and up) as well as the xBox gaming community (which is probably a wiser move than relying upon free labor from their employees).
But before Microsoft can do that, they need to give developers a reason to switch away (or at least focus) upon their mobile device, as right now developers have to choose between profits (iPhone) and freedom (Android).