Microsoft is reported to have offered the former developers for the WebOS platform free Windows Phone devices along with various developer tools after they were left stranded when HP announced the discontinuity of further WebOS based mobile devices. Windows Phone 7’s Senior Director of Development for Microsoft, Brandon Watson, was the one who made this offer to the aforementioned developers in a message posted on Twitter this Friday.
He said that Microsoft will provide any published developer of WebOS with free Windows Phone devices, developer tools and even training to make them successful on its own platform. This offer came right after HP announced a couple of days ago that it will discontinue manufacturing and supporting the TouchPad and the WebOS based phones, and no further devices based on the platform will be released.
Watson’s earlier attempts at gaining publicity for Windows Phone 7 have already been very expansively reported. For instance, he once promised a comic strip author that if he didn’t like the operating system, he would donate $1000 to a charity of his choice. He has also been known to offer devices based on the platform to the well-known iOS hacker Geohot and the original team which jailbroke Windows Phone 7. Watson is trying out several methods in order to attract more developers for the OS and also make the Windows Phone 7 more recognizable for the users.
He even went to the extent of posting his own personal cell phone number on Twitter, requesting the developers interested in Windows Phone OS to contact him for discussing questions related to app development. Microsoft is also known to be trying to get developers from the iOS camp on to their platform. The software giant very recently gave out a tool for API mapping which makes it easier to port their apps across platforms for iOS developers.
In addition to the developer tools, Microsoft also has a strong focus towards marketing their products. Windows Phone developers are being offered free merchandising slots. These slots will let the developers on the platform get their applications mentioned on the featured section of Microsoft’s application marketplace.
Microsoft is steadily approaching the 30,000 app mark on its marketplace. It is expected that many more developers will join the Microsoft bandwagon when Nokia starts unveiling its new line of Windows Phone based smartphone starting later this year.