How To Create Native Windows Phone 8 App In Five Minutes, No Coding Skill Required

Microsoft has been trying very hard to get more apps on the Windows Phone 8 market place. One way is to get none developers onboard and join the development and creation of apps for Windows Phone 8. Last week, Microsoft announced a new program that allows you. as a normal user, to create native Windows Phone 8 app right inside your browser. Here is how you can leverage this new service to create a native Windows Phone 8 apps. It’s very cool, you should definitely check them out. There are plenty of templates to choose from that will fit most of your need.

Step 1: Get Invite Code

Go to http://apps.windowsstore.com/default.htm and login with your Windows Live ID. Then you will need to send an email to studio@microsoft.com. Doesn’t matter what’s in the body content. You then will get an invitation code to join the program. Your first screen will be something like this once you received the invitation code.

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Click “Create App”

Step 2: Pick a Template For Your Windows Phone 8 App

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There are a dozen templates you can choose from to create an app. In this case I picked the template “Our company”. You will get a preview of features what each templates contain.

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Give some descriptive information on the apps you’d like to create.

Step 3: Configure App Content

This is where magic happens, it’s the core of what your app contains, you get to pick and decided what to show inside your app. The application sections allows you to add multiple pivot point or views for your app. Each section is unique and well designed, all you need to do as a user is to supply the information where to pull the data from. You can either enter those data right here or you can provide the data source in various formats.

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Adding RSS to your app. I guess the most common apps out there are some type of RSS reader based on a particular site, convert it to the native Windows Phone 8. Microsoft has thought this through, and it has provided a well thought way to create those apps, all you need to do is supply the RSS feed URL, and this system will take care of the rest.

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Step 4: Customization

Now you can customize the look and feel of the app you’ve just created. There plenty colour to choose from, you can even add your own colour scheme or back ground images.

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Step 5: Get The Newly Created Windows Phone 8 Native App

Now it’s time to get the app you’ve just created. Click “Generate” on the bottom left corner to generate the app. This process might take some time, as the server will go ahead and generate the app along with the source code for you to edit.

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Step 6: Congratulations You’ve just crated a Windows Phone 8 app

Now you’re almost done, before you go ahead download and install the app. You will need to install the certificate Microsoft sends you in your Windows Live ID.

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Once you have installed the certificate on your Windows Phone 8, you can now go ahead run the app right inside your phone. You also get the option to download the source code behind the app you’ve just created. Or even better if you decided to publish this app, you can download the publish package and submit this package to the Windows Phone 8 market place.

Conclusion

This is a great service by Microsoft to help user / developer to quickly bootstrap a native Windows Phone 8 app from scratch. The only concern is the number of quality of apps in the market place as a result of such service. By number, Microsoft might claim they have reached a certain number of apps on the market place, but if 99% of the apps are build in such way then really it’s not doing any favour for the entire ecosystem of Windows Phone. But regardless, this is still a very cool way to get your hands dirty with Windows Phone 8, try it out !

Jonathan Hu

Programming by day, Web Development, Canucks & Movies for spare time!
Co-founder of Next of Windows and a cool geek 🙂

Last updated: 08/04/2014

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