Remember, this is all free

That's right, to make millions from THE NEXT BIG THING (add the appropriate amount of reverb), it doesn't cost you a penny to get started.  The tools are all free.  And they're smart installers.  If you already have either VS2010 or Blend, the installers will update your toolbox.  If you're missing one of those, the installer will install the free version.  As it should be.

The RTM Release

Nothing exists unless ScottGU announces it, so here is THE ANNOUNCEMENT (again, reverb): http://weblogs.asp.net/scottgu/archive/2010/09/16/windows-phone-7-developer-tools-released.aspx

Getting Rid of the Beta

If you have the beta tools installed, you can't install the RTM version over them.  You need to uninstall the CTP or beta.  It's easy, see my other post at http://helpcentral.componentone.com/CS/evangelists/b/rich_dudley/archive/2010/09/11/uninstalling-windows-phone-developer-tools-beta.aspx.

Getting the tools

Download the tools: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=185584.

Additional tools, in open source Silverlight for Windows Phone Toolkit: http://silverlight.codeplex.com/releases/view/52297.

Jeff Blankenburg has some more resources listed at http://www.jeffblankenburg.com/page/Windows-Phone-7-Resources.aspx.  Includes a cool set of Application Bar icons.

Tim Heuer also has a list of tips and tricks: http://timheuer.com/blog/archive/2010/09/16/windows-phone-7-developer-tips-and-tricks.aspx.  You might need to build an app or two before some of these make sense, but this is a good bookmark.

[update 2010-09-23] In the September RTM, only C# is supported.  A CTP of VB.NET support has been announced at http://c1.ms/bqbCLn. [/update]

What's new?

In addition to the usual controls (textbox, grid, stackpanel, etc), there are a few new notable controls:

  • Panorama
  • Pivot
  • Bing Map Control

There are several new product types to support the Panorama and Pivot controls.  Also, the List Application is now renamed the Databound Application.

Are there more controls?

Silverlight toolkit includes some additional controls:

  • GestureService/GestureListener
  • ContextMenu
  • DatePicker
  • TimePicker
  • ToggleSwitch
  • WrapPanel

Where can I post an idea for additional controls?

There is a discussion thread at http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/windowsphone7series/thread/2d674bbe-ebc7-4a4f-bb47-f58876fbad96.

If it's a really good idea, send it to me!  ;)

Is multitasking supported?

Nay.  Here's the scoop: http://www.clr-namespace.com/post/Why-multitasking-is-missing-on-Windows-Phone-7.aspx.  This is important because you need to make sure your application saves its state when the user navigates to a different app, but then decides to come back.

My head is exploding with possibilities!  How do I regain my sanity?

You need to get to a Windows Phone 7 Firestarter ASAP!  There are still some on the calendar at http://www.msdnevents.com/firestarter/, and I'll bet more will be added.  If you're coming to the Pittsburgh one, drop me a line.

The Windows Phone 7 Training Kit is hosted on Channel 9 at http://channel9.msdn.com/learn/courses/WP7TrainingKit/.  Silverlight TV also has a new video on building a Bing web search app at http://channel9.msdn.com/shows/SilverlightTV/Silverlight-TV-45-Building-a-Bing-Web-and-Image-Search-App-for-Windows-Phone-7-Using-Blend-and-Silve/.  Windows Phone 7 Jumpstart Training, with  more videos and training materials, is at http://windowsteamblog.com/windows_phone/b/wpdev/archive/2010/08/17/windows-phone-7-jump-start-training.aspx.

Dani Diaz has a list of additional videos at http://smallandmighty.net/blog/windows-phone-7-developer-goodies-1/.  Michael Crump has a simple start-to-finish at http://michaelcrump.net/archive/2010/09/16/from-start-to-finish-with-the-final-version-of-visual.aspx.

I've been working with Phone 7 development for several weeks now, and I'll be starting a deeper dive series on this blog showing what I've learned, and as I continue to learn.  If I've missed anything here, add a comment or drop me a line.  Thanks!

[update 2010-09-27]

Training, Samples and Best Practices

Windows Phone Guidance Catalog - more documentation, samples, best practices, etc.: http://innovation.connect.microsoft.com/devguidancemaps/wikipage?title=Windows Phone Developer Guidance Map&referringTitle=Home

Design

Yes, fellow developers, we need to include design.  It's surprisingly easy on the phone.

Design Resources for Windows Phone: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff637515(VS.92).aspx

Design Templates for Windows Phone 7: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=196225 (Accompanying Channel 9 video: http://channel9.msdn.com/Shows/Inside Windows Phone/Inside-Windows-Phone08-Windows-Phone-Design-Templates, additional download in the changesets at http://wp7designtemplates.codeplex.com/SourceControl/list/changesets)

Windows Phone UI Design and Interaction Guide: Windows Phone UI Design and Interaction Guide (ironically, a PDF so horribly formatted it's impossible to read on a Kindle, and difficult on a large monitor)

Windows Phone Design System - Codename Metro: http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=189338 (the term "Metro" is inspired by mass transit stations, not a form of men's fashion)