Lumia 620 Giveaway

UPDATE: We have a winner! Congratulations Imran Shaquif, of Dangling Neuron, who has won the March Lumia 620 giveaway.

March Lumia 620 Giveaway

I am giving away a Lumia 620 to a lucky WPDev.

The rules are simple:

  • You have published a new Windows Phone app (starting Feb 1st 2013)
  • You live in the US and are not in California, Texas or New York
  • You’re a member of Nokia’s http://Dvlup.com (Go to Dvlup.com and register, you don’t need a code anymore)

If you meet these conditions, send the following information to ext-lance.mccarthy (at) Nokia.com:

  • The URL to your app and the date it was published
  • Your Windows Phone publisher name
  • Your Dvlup username
  • Your location (City, State)

Once I verify your info, I will add you to the list and randomly draw a winner on Sunday, March 31st. If you do not win here, then don’t worry, I have a whole bunch of tricks up my sleeve for the next couple months. Get your app in the store and get the url to me!

If you do not have a DevCenter account, send me the finished app and I will give you a DevCenter account.

Ready, Set, CODE!

Lance

Fine Print: This contest is held by me and I reserve the right to change the rules if it is found to be unfair. You are not eligible if you are represented by another Nokia Developer Ambassador, this is because they each have the same resources as me and I will be cross-referencing with them to make sure you are not “double-dipping”. This device is not available for retail sale in the US and is not covered by US warranty.

Rewarding Quality

Offer ends Feb 11th, 2013 5:00 PM PST

So you’ve published an app and you’ve worked hard to keep its rating at 4+ stars. You’ve had at least 50 ratings, proving that it’s not a fluke. Now what? Let me bring you into the fold of the elite.

You and your app will get:

  • Windows Phone Store Placement
  • App Highlights Placement (Nokia’s app that is preinstalled on all new Nokia Lumias)
  • NAX Credits for you to advertise your app in other apps

So if you meet the conditions (has minimum 50 ratings, is currently 4 stars or higher, and you’re DVLUP member or eligible to be) send me an email ext-lance.mccarthy@nokia.com

How Rad is your app?

I have another giveaway and challenge for my developers today. In addition to being a Nokia Developer Ambassador, I work full time as a XAML Support Specialist at Telerik, yep the awesome RadControls people. So, I’d like to ask you, “How Rad is your app?”

I don’t want this post to sound like an ad, but rather a testimonial. That’s why I make it a point to say that I used the RadControls long before I became an employee, their components are a powerful, indispensable part of my development toolbox. The RadControls make your app look like you had a whole team of designers.  I just released an app powered by the RadControls, “Conferenced In”.  Get it here so you can follow along with this post as I make a simple comparison.

In the app I use the DataBoundListBox instead of the default listbox, this easy change dramatically increased the polish and functionality of my app. With features like “PullToRefresh” and built-in animations, I got a great UX with minimal effort. Another great feature of the DataBoundListBox is the “OnDemand” feature. You have the ability to fetch new list items when the user gets to the bottom of the contents via an Automatic or Manual OnDemand method built into the control. To see this in action:

  1. Open Conferenced In and sign in to Twitter (if you don’t have a Twitter account, the app has a guest mode)
  2. Choose an upcoming conference (this combo box and popup display is the RadListPicker)
  3. Select “Load Speakers”. Notice how the speakers fill the viewport? Awesome sauce, right! That’s the RadDataBoundListBox built-in animation with a little customization.
  4. If you signed into twitter, slide over to your timeline or mentions and scroll all the way to the bottom. You’ll see a button to load older tweets, that is the OnDemandManual mode.
  5. Now go back to the speakers list and select a speaker, this will bring you to their profile page.
  6. With the speaker’s tweets in front of you, pull the tweets down. You’ll see the PullToRefresh icon and animation do it’s magic.  This is a built-in property that you only need to toggle and populate the event handler. Easy button.
  7. Now scroll to the bottom of the speaker’s tweets as fast as possible, when you reach the end of the list notice the “loading” busy indicator. This is the control in OnDemandAutomatic mode! You will see the older tweets animate in from the right.

Now imagine if I used a default listbox? How much coolness would I lose? Exactly…

So, I’ve added a new feature to this blog. If you look over to the right sidebar, you’ll now see a new widget titled, “Examples”. This is a live Box.net widget where I have placed example applications that you can download right now. Go ahead and get the Telerik Examples compressed folder from the widget. Inside there you will find the source code of several applications (in parenthesis is the link to the example if it is the Marketplace):

  1. Telerik Examples (live link only: You get this as part of your trial download. Find it at C:Program Files (x86)TelerikRadControls for Windows Phone 7 Q3 2012Demos)
  2. Picture Gallery (live link)
  3. Telerik Design Templates (live link)
  4. Telerik ToDo
  5. Telerik Exchange Client
  6. Telerik Agenda Viewer

The next step is go get yourself a trial of the RadControls for Windows Phone, go to this link and click the “Download Trial” button. Install the RadControls and then go explore the source code of the example apps. Take a look at how flexible and powerful they really are. I only gave you one small case, imagine what this can do for your apps! See how the Telerik Windows team leverages the different features in these examples. You can fully develop your app and also get unlimited support ticket during your trial!

Get free license to the RadControls for Windows Phone I will award one license to the first developer who sends me their app that uses at least 3 RadControls in their app and tells me how the RadControls made their app better. Apps published before Nov 7th are not eligible for this challenge, but if you are updating an existing app with the RadControls that was first published after Nov 7th, it is eligible. Contact me at Nokia-Dev(at)outlook(dot)com for more rules and details.

We’re back at the original question, “How Rad is your app?”

To 3 or not to 3, that is the question

Huh? Unless you were one of the developers I just gave codes to join the new Nokia program DVLUP, the title of this post makes no sense. So, what am I talking about?

If you build and publish 3 Windows Phone apps for me, I will give you a Nokia Lumia 800.

If you build and publish 5 windows Phone apps for me, I will give you a Nokia Lumia 900.

There is your dilemma, “To 3 or not to 3”. So get coding and help me to help you. If you are a developer in the US or Canada, I will provide you with an invitation code for DVLUP. You will find app ideas from the challenges (why not fulfill two challenge requirements in the same app!).

There are some conditions, as this list explains:

  1. “While Supplies Last & First Come First Serve” – There are 5 Lumia 800’s and 3 Lumia 900’s available for this challenge. The devs who fulfill the challenge first get the devices first.
  2. I am making this challenge available internationally with two conditions. The app needs to be published to and be available in the U.S. Windows Phone Store. If you fulfill the requirements and want the phone(s), you are responsible for the international shipping/import duties. If you’re in the US, I will ship it to you free.
  3. This challenge is being solely run by me. You agree that by submitting your app to me for consideration in the challenge you agree not to hold me or Nokia liable for any damages your app may cause in the future. I am helping developers get published, not trying to be involved in litigation. These conditions are also separable if one rule is found to be invalid.
  4. Apps published before November 7. 2012 are not eligible for this challenge.
  5. If you choose to redeem 3 apps for the Lumia 800, your “App Counter” is reset (you can’t get a Lumia 800 for three then publish 2 more for the Lumia 900). You will need to publish 5 more to get the Lumia 900.
  6. Only one of each prize is awarded to a single developer. You can get a Lumia 800 and a Lumia 900, but not two 800’s or two 900’s.
  7. All judging decisions are final in regards to this competition.
  8. The apps will be assessed by me for quality. What does quality mean?
  • Must be published (it passed certification)
  • No “Hello World” or simple Flashlight/Fart apps (Flashlight 7 is an example of a feature rich flashlight app)
  • No more than one can be an RSS reader/Aggregator
  • No duplicate apps (a localized app for each country counts as one, and a separate real estate app for every city counts as one)
  • The app needs to be useful for something (e.g. an entertainment app makes you laugh. Even though it doesn’t do you banking it is still useful)

If you still have questions or are an Android/iOS developer who wants to participate, send me an email.To submit your app to me send an email to Nokia-Dev@outlook.com, be sure to include the app’s url (or XAP if you are just introducing it to me) and a description. Good luck and happy coding!

Good luck!

You have apps and I have phones, let’s MeetUp!

If you’re going to be in the Boston area on Thursday December 6th, come on over to Microsoft Research & Development in Cambridge (NERD). I’m doing a 90 minute group explaining how Nokia’s new developer program (DVLUP) works and what it can do for you. I’ll also be introducing you to other the new stuff Nokia is providing for developers, most of it unprecedented and groundbreaking. Nokia fully believes in the fact that if you give developers the tools and resources, they will produce amazing apps.

Right now DVLUP is in a private, invite only, beta. However, if you come to the meetup, I’ll give you a code on the spot. If you don’t have a developer account yet, I can help you there as well. If you show me a completed Windows Phone app, ready to publish, I will cover your first year’s Dev Center fee! That will let you developer unlock your phone and publish your app to the Microsoft App Store. That’s just one example of some of the amazing ways Nokia can get you started. Come to the Meetup to learn about the rest.

I will be providing food and refreshments. Oh, and one more little thing… I will be giving away a Nokia Lumia Windows Phone! Yep, I’ll be raffling off a Nokia Lumia 900 at the event and give you the chance to earn one. It’s super easy to get a free phone from me, come to the Meetup to learn how to do that.

Space is limited, so RSVP now. you’ll find all the information about the event at that link  If you have any questions in general, fell free to email me at Nokia-WpDev (at) Outllook (dot) com. I hope to see you there!

I want to give you a white Nokia Lumia 900!

Yep, you heard right. I really, really want to give away two Nokia Lumias (First place get a 900 and second place gets an 800). I need you to do something for me in return, build a winning app! So how do you win? There are two ways, one device for each of the following categories:

  1. Create an awesome app for Windows Phone from scratch
  2. Port your existing Android/iOS app to Windows Phone

Even if you don’t win a top prize this contest, you will be ready for my next giveaway. Bring the apps and I’ll bring the swag!

Let me provide a little guidance on the categories:

#1 Windows Phone app from scratch

Your app should take advantage of the great APIs Windows Phone exposes. I will provide you with the tools and resources to get the job done. See further down where I explain a bit deeper about what the app should provide.

#2 Porting your app from another OS

It doesn’t matter how you get the app to Windows Phone as long as you publish it. You can use a third party system like PhoneGap or build it from the ground up. This all depends on how you built the original app. I have spoken to countless developers who have ported their apps to and they all say the same thing, it took at least 20% less time to build their app for Windows Phone.

Okay, so what should your app do? The best and award winning apps take advantage of sensors and data.

  • Camera (image manipulation, video recording, etc)
  • Sensors (accelerometer, location, etc)
  • Fun and unique data manipulation (from sources like twitter, rss/atom feeds, etc)
  • Bluetooth data tranfser
  • Social Networking integration (give your users something to shout about)

Those are just some sample ideas, there is much to leverage with Windows Phone. I could sit here all day and tell you how great it is, but showing you is better. Get your hands dirty with the sample applications from the Windows Phone team.

Windows Phone 8  (27 examples)

Windows Phone 7.5  (27 examples)

Download the samples that interest you the most or will show you how to implement your idea. For example, if you have an idea for a camera app, be sure to see how its done in the example first.

To submit your application for consideration for judging, you must email me a description of what the app does, who it is intended for and the XAP file for me to run/test it. If I find that it works as expected and meets quality standards (“Hello World” apps need not apply), you can move on to the publishing phase.

This is the time for you to publish the app to the Windows Phone Store, it has to be published by Dec 14th to be eligible for this run of the contest. If you do not yet have a developer account, I will be able to provide you with a token for a year of membership for free. Once again, quality standards apply, but most likely the app would not have made it this far anyways. We will be looking for form and function. Does it feel like a Windows Phone app (some exceptions, like games)? Does it cleverly leverage sensor data?

I will pick two top apps from each category. The four finalists will then go into a public poll for the public to weigh-in their vote (American Idol Style)! The winner of the public poll for each category will get a Nokia Lumia! Of the two winners, the one with the most votes will get a Lumia 900. Second place will get a Lumia 800. To top it off, the winners will also get a license for Telerik’s RadControls for Windows Phone!

Good luck! Contact me if have any questions.

Twitter: @lancewmccarthy

Email: Nokia-Dev (at) outlook (dot) com

More contest details:  This is a contest I am running personally as a Developer Ambassador, if you choose to participate you are agreeing that I or Nokia has the right to promote your app as the winner. You also agree not to hold Nokia or I liable for any costs you may incur while developing your app. We provide you with free tools and resources and anything additional you choose to add is your responsibility. If you are not located in the US, you are responsible for taxes/duties and international shipping costs for the device. If you are in the US, I will ship you the device free of charge.  The source code you write and show me is kept completely confidential and will not be shared. If you win in this event you can participate in future event but not with the same app. Even if you don’t win one of the two phones here, you will have plenty of opportunities for success in other events. Participating here does not disqualify you in other events I hold, in fact it will give you a head start… so do not give up!  I reserve the right to change contest rules if a rule is found to be unfair or needs tweaking to make sure everyone has a fair chance to win.