Windows Phone 7.8 SDK Released Ahead of OS Update

Yesterday, I wrote about Microsoft’s announcement stating Windows Phone 7.8 is on its way. Now Microsoft has now released the Windows Phone 7.8 SDK, enabling developers to get to work creating apps for the new platform and tweaking old ones.

Apps developed using the new SDK will work only on Windows Phone 7.x smartphones as it is not compatible with Windows Phone 8. The new SDK will also require the Windows Phone 7.1 or 8.0 SDKs to be already installed.

While apps made for Windows Phone 7.5 will obviously still run on 7.8 the SDK means developers can now adapt their apps to take advantage of the new home screen with its resizable tiles. Thus, it brings the new, more flexible Windows Phone Live Tiles homescreen to the older handsets, and allow users to choose between combinations of three sizes of tiles.

It also means users can see how the apps run on 512MB and 256MB devices with the WP 7.8 emulators.

In the blog post, Microsoft describes the SDK as an “optional update” for developers, indicating it adds two new Windows Phone 7.8 emulator images to the developer’s existing SDK installation. The post went;

“These two emulator images should enable you to fully test how your Windows Phone 7.5 app’s Live Tiles will look and behave when they are run on a device running Windows Phone 7.8”.

The new SDK was announced on the Microsoft Windows PhoneDeveloper Blog.

The WP 7.8 update has been seen for AT&T’s Lumia 900 on Nokia’s servers meaning that deployment is imminent, as it is in other parts of the world, with announcements by Telstra in Australia and O2 in the UK and Germany.

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