Build 2013 Day Two recap: Windows Azure Mobile Service & Windows Azure Web Sites now available, new Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 apps and more

At Day Two of the Build 2013 conference in San Francisco, Microsoft showed the thousands of developers in attendance (and thousands more online) the opportunity for creating new apps and services on the Windows platform.

Server and Tools Business President Satya Nadella and Corporate Vice President of Developer Platform Evangelism Steve Guggenheimer both delivered keynotes focused on how commonality across the Windows platform enables developers of all types to build compelling apps and experiences spanning devices and services.

Here’s a recap of the major news announced today:

General Availability of Windows Azure Mobile Services and Windows Azure Web Sites. Mobile Services makes it fast and easy to create a mobile backend for every device. Mobile Services simplifies user authentication, push notification, server side data and business logic so you can get your mobile application in market fast. Mobile Services provides native SDKs for Windows Store, Windows Phone, Android, iOS and HTML5 as well as REST APIs. Starting today, Mobile Services is Generally Available (GA) in three tiers—Free, Standard and Premium. Windows Azure Web Sites is the fastest way to build, scale and manage business-grade Web applications. Windows Azure Web Sites is open and flexible with support for multiple languages and frameworks including ASP.NET, PHP, Node.JS and Python, multiple open-source applications including WordPress, Drupal and even multiple databases.  ASP.NET developers can easily create new or move existing websites to Windows Azure from directly inside Visual Studio. Read more about it over on the Windows Azure Blog.

More popular apps coming to the Windows Store. On June 19, Steve Guggenheimer announced several new apps would be coming to the Windows Store, including Vevo and Vyclone. Today, Guggenheimer announced another round of apps that will soon be available in the Windows Store, including Disney, Foursquare, OpenTable, Rockmelt and Rhapsody. You can read more about these cool new apps over on Blogging Windows. That’s a screenshot from Foursquare above.

Voxer, Walgreens, ABC News and more major apps for Windows Phone 8 are here. Also announced at Build today were a number of new apps for Windows Phone 8, including ABC News, Xfinity by Comcast, TV Remote, Dow Jones MarketWatch and Walgreens, as well as the live push-to-talk and multimedia messaging app, Voxer. Read more about these new apps over on the Windows Phone Blog. That’s a screenshot of the ABC News app below.

ABC News

Developing intelligent, connected industry device solutions with Windows Embedded. The Windows Embedded team reached the next milestone in its product roadmap by building on Windows Embedded 8 – the Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry Release Preview. This is a significant platform update to the Windows Embedded portfolio, furthering our engineering alignment and release schedule with Windows. We can’t wait for you to try it out. Head on over to the Windows Embedded Blog to get the full story.

New tools to help developers boost monetization in Windows 8. In preparation for the launch of Windows 8.1, Microsoft has made it easier than ever to use advertising to monetize your app. The new Windows 8.1 Ad SDK is built to enable targeting across our App Network as well as take advantage of the forthcoming benefits of Windows 8.1. In addition to the updated Windows 8 Ad SDK, today we are announcing an update to our advertisement sizes for Windows 8 (which will also apply to Windows 8.1). Both the Windows 8.1 Ad SDK and Windows 8.0 Ad SDK can be found here. For more detail, read today’s post over on the Microsoft Advertising Blog.

Finally, we also announced the availability of the PayPal SDK, which allows developers to integrate the payment experience for 128 million account holders into a Windows 8 or Windows Phone 8 app, and enhancements and updates to the .NET 4.5.1 runtime. Read more about those announcements and more over on the Microsoft News Center.

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Jeff Meisner
Microsoft News Center