With the Windows 8 Consumer Preview coming soon there have been lots of questions about how developers can get apps into the app store. In a post on MSDN Microsoft have detailed (with a video) the process for developing and submitting apps in to the store. Windows 8 is going to live or die on the quality of the apps in the store especially as it’s the only way to get apps onto the ARM version of Windows 8.
If your thinking of doing Windows 8 development then the post is well worth reading.
Design iteration and learning
In addition to defining the set of baseline scenarios that we knew we had to deliver, we took several early design prototypes into the usability lab to get direct feedback from a diverse cross-section of developers. We also took the time to listen to as many developers as we could, asking them to describe any difficulties they encountered when submitting apps to other platforms.
Developer expectations are as diverse as the apps they write. Some developers arrive hungry for information and want to fully explore every option, while others are looking for a streamlined experience that takes only a few minutes. We established that setting time and complexity expectations up front is important and that we needed to provide a straightforward path toward submission while still offering flexibility in how developers explore and consider their options. We also learned that the process of thinking through the options for publishing an app—basics like markets, price, trials, and in-app offers—frequently inspire developers to add new features and change some code.
We broke down the submission process into two phases. At first, the developer is in the driver’s seat, learning, submitting, and reviewing their own data, working at their own pace. However, once you submit the app for certification, you are in the passenger seat, tracking the progress of the app, but unable to affect that progress or outcome in the same way as before. We needed a plan to increase confidence in this second phase, while transparently tracking the status of the app during the certification process.
We wanted to be sure that you would be able to submit your apps incrementally, and complete the process over several sessions. We needed a system that would predictably and reliably save data even when that data isn’t perfect yet, as you sometimes need to move on to something else and pick up the process again later.