Microsoft launches tool for iOS developers to port apps to WP7 [Coming Soon for Android]

The battle for taking the lead in the increasingly competitive mobile app store arena is getting hotter and hotter. Microsoft launched its much awaited Windows Phone 7 ( WP7) platform late last year, many claimed too late. It’s agreement with Nokia that took place this year too drew a lot of attention and mixed views on what this would mean for Microsoft and Nokia. But not taking the criticism to heart and continuing with its ongoing expansion plans, Microsoft has announced a tool for iOS app developers to help them port their apps to WP7.

The API eases quick migration of iOS API calls to equivalent classes on WP7, thus enabling developers to get their code (and thus apps) to work with Microsoft’s standards.

According to Jean-Christophe Cimetiere, Microsoft’s senior technical evangelist: “With this tool, iPhone developers can grab their apps, pick out the iOS API calls, and quickly look up the equivalent classes, methods and notification events in WP7…The code samples allow developers to quickly migrate short blobs of iOS code to the equivalent C# code. All WP7 API documentations are pulled in from the Silverlight, C# and XNA sources on MSDN.”

A video of the announcement can be found here.

The package available at http://windowsphone.interoperabilitybridges.com/ provides

  • A NEW iPhone/iOS to Windows Phone 7 API mapping tool.
  • A 90+ pages “Windows Phone 7 Guide for iPhone Application Developers” white paper, organized in 8 chapters, and growing.
  • A series of “developer stories”, in which developers share on video their experience porting iPhone applications to Windows Phone and explain why and how they did it.
  • A compilation of the key resources you need to get started.

Looks like Microsoft is ready to pull all the stops in an effort to win app developers over. All in all it sounds like a good strategy too, but considering the momentum the other platforms have already gained, does a developer need another platform?? What is your take?