Smartphone technology is evolving at a rapid pace. Just two short years after the release of Windows Phone 7—which itself was a major departure from the previous version—Microsoft released Windows Phone 8. This is a huge release. Almost everything in the stack, from the hardware up to the application platform layer, has changed dramatically. The operating system moves towards convergence with the Windows 8 desktop operating system via a shared core, and the app platform includes support for native development. At the same time, the app platform maintains an extremely high degree of backward compatibility, ensuring that Windows Phone 7 apps continue to work on Windows Phone 8.

The platform has been designed from the ground up to support ...

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