Windows Store offers multi-XAP packages to developers

Published by at

One here that's primarily for developers, but should benefit everyone on the Windows Phone platform, both long time users and those new to the platform. The Windows Store will now allow multiple XAP installation files to be associated with a single 'application'. The upshot is that developers can now (if they wish) have a WP7 version and a WP8 version of an application under the same entry in the Windows Store.

Zamora makes it clear from the blog the benefits to this approach:

To better serve your needs, the Windows Phone Dev Center now offers the ability to associate multiple XAPs with the same app GUID. This means that you can create, submit, and maintain different versions of your app for Windows Phone 7 and Windows Phone 8.

Developers can still work on a Windows Phone 7 code base and ensure that it is compatible with Windows Phone 8, or simply upgrade the Windows Phone 7 code to run solely on WP8, or to have two XAP's for 7 and 8. The worry here is that new developers will focus solely on Windows Phone 8 and that older devices will not receive the latest applications. In the short and medium term, the installed base will be built on WP7 and you;d be a fool to ignore it (unless there is a specific code function only available in WP8).

Aspect ratio example

It's at this point old-time Psion and Symbian developers will point out the SIS installation files on the older platform always allowed code bundles for multiple machines to be in the one file, but let's not upset the apple cart too much.

More details and a walk-through of the process can be found online at the Windows Phone Developer Blog.

Source / Credit: Bernardo Zamora (Windows Phone Developer's Blog)