Above expectation, Microsoft released the WP7.8 SDK update for the Windows Phone 7 developers who wants to upgrade their apps to target the new WP7.8 OS rolling out after 31st January 2013. This update brings some prominent features like the new start screen.
In this post, I am going to share the downloadable links of the new SDK and the instructions to install this SDK update.
The important feature that the Windows Phone 7 developers were looking for in this SDK update is the new start screen experience which is already available in Windows Phone 8 SDK. By using this update, the developers will be able to provide the new Start Screen experience of Windows Phone 8 in their Windows Phone 7 (more precisely, 7.5) applications.
Microsoft confirmed that, this update supports both the WP7.1 SDK and the WP8.0 SDK. This will not change the existing installation. Hence you will still be able to develop apps for the other OS image you already installed.
This update will bring two new emulator images to your existing Windows Phone SDK installation (whether that is WP7.1 or WP8.0) to provide you a better start screen experience only. No new APIs are available in this update for Windows Phone 7.8.
From some sources we came to know that, the Windows Phone 7.8 OS update is going to roll out from 31st January 2013 and will be pushed through Zune all over the world during February. As the actual OS update is going to roll out soon, hence the developers can update their existing WP7 apps to take proper advantage of the new tile experience.
If you are willing to update your existing Windows Phone SDK with the 7.8 update, you can do so by clicking the below link but before that, please ensure that you have either Windows Phone SDK 7.1 or Windows Phone SDK 8.0 installed in that PC.
The Windows Phone SDK update adds the following capabilities to your machine:
- It brings the Windows Phone 7.8 emulator image. This OS image emulates your app running on a 512-MB device running Windows Phone 7.8 (build 8858)
- It brings the Windows Phone 7.8 emulator image for 256 MB device. This OS image emulates Windows Phone 7.8 (build 8858) running on a 256-MB device
- If you’re running a Windows Phone SDK 7.1 installation, the update will also download and install the Windows Phone SDK 7.1.1 update onto your machine as part of the update (only applicable to Windows Phone SDK 7.1 installations, who don’t have the 7.1.1 update)