Book review of Windows Phone 8 Application Development Essentials

Book cover - Windows Phone 8 Application Development Essentials

Hello Folks!

This is no technical post, as you can clearly tell from the title, this is a review of a book that I recently had the chance to go through.
PACKT Publishing  “one of the most prolific and fast-growing tech book publishers in the world” and of course the publisher of my book Developing Windows Store Apps with HTML5 and JavaScript, recently contacted me with the ask of reviewing one of their new publications titled Windows Phone 8 Application Development Essentials,
and I accepted the ask with utmost delight.

Just having a look at the Table of Contents, makes you certain that you are on a very good read. I have an experience with Windows 8 app development with strong emphasis on Javascript/HTML5 and always wanted to learn the essentials of Windows Phone development with XAML. So if you share the same story, someone who wants to learn about Windows Phone development from A to Z, then you will find this book very helpful.

Chapter 1 brings a great introduction to XAML in Windows Phone, covering the most important topics for someone who wants to develop for Windows phone: common controls, containers, navigational controls and working with data.  The controls are very well documented.

Moving forward, you will learn about the design principles and best practices from a fellow Windows Phone developer.

Chapter 3 covers MVVM (The Model View ViewModel architectural pattern), the backbone of developing Windows Phone apps, and interestingly the chapter covers the aspects of the MVVM that you will need in Windows Phone development and doesn’t elaborate more, which is more than you need if you are there to learn about Windows Phone 8 development only.  A great thing about this chapter is that it covers the MVVM light toolkit that developers find a very useful and allows speed of development with Windows Phone.
Then the author, briefly covers the integration with the Windows Phone as a device with topics of launchers (camera launcher for example), notifications, storage, files and background agents.

Last chapter, is like the dessert following a very healthy meal, sweet but not too heavy. Teaching you in details, how to integrate with Facebook and Twitter APIs which will help you implement great features in an app. The author goes in details, step by step with each.

In a nutshell, it was an excellent read. Furthermore, the book is great for the developers who want a jump start course on Windows Phone 8 app development while learning about very important topics in programming which are XAML and MVVM pattern. This book will also be your guide along the way after you finish it, it will serve as a resourceful reference.

Happy Reading

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App Academy Dubai on Windows 8.1, Azure and Visual Studio 2013

It’s in 4 days!!!!! Register, Share and Attend. Come see what’s new in Visual Studio 2013, Learn all about developing apps for Windows 8.1 and connecting your apps with Windows Azure Mobile Services.

Dubai, UAE
Microsoft Office
GEMS Room, Bldg
#8, DIC
November 8-9
Limited seating,
register today.To find out more
click here
The App Academy is a free event organized by developers for developers. This is your opportunity to improve your app development skills by learning about the new changes, features and APIs available in
Windows 8.1 that will leverage your coding skills and help you start developing for windows 8.1. you will also learn how to integrate cloud-based back-end solutions in your apps.Stay updated with what’s new in Visual Studio 2013 and the powerful tools and services it provides to help you create a new breed of applications or to modernize existing applications. You can also explore the innovative features it brings for better developer productivity, support for Windows 8.1 app development, web development advances and expanded ALM capabilities.Visit the Microsoft Virtual Academy for additional training information.Register now to attend the App Academy to become an expert app developer! Optional: Bring your own device with device with Windows 8.1 and Visual Studio 2013 installed.



Posted in Events, Windows 8.1

Developing Windows Azure and Web Services Jump Start

Great new Free (You heard right, FREE!! ) course covering Windows Azure is coming your way(November 13, 2013) on Microsoft Virtual Academy

Course title is: Developing Windows Azure and Web Services Jump Start

The course is Fast Paced Live Virtual Session, targeting Web developers who are looking for ways to increase their reach and reduce your work. Attend the course to find out how to build Web API or WCF services that can access data and are hosted in Windows Azure.

If you want to build services that can be accessed by apps across multiple devices, then this is the Jump Start for you. You’ll get the end-to-end scenario for building the entire application.


- WCF Web Services
- Windows Azure Services
- Azure Storage and SQL Database
- Data Access Technologies
- Data Access with Entity Framework
- Web API Services
- Advanced Topics

More details on the event on this link right here

Register Today

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Windows Azure Backup is now generally available

Great news today
Windows Azure Backup is now generally available!

Windows Azure Backup helps you protect important server data off-site with automated backup and restoration.
You can manage backups using familiar backup tools in the Windows Server operating system or the Data Protection Manager component of Microsoft System Center.
Backups are encrypted and stored off-site in Windows Azure, reducing the need to secure and protect on-site backup media. Authorized users can easily recover backups to any server.

If you are already using Windows Azure Backup in preview, you may wish to upgrade to the latest version of the Backup agent by following the steps in the agent upgrade notification, which is visible in the backup console of your servers.

For more information, visit the Windows Azure Backup webpage.

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Windows 8.1 Networking features

Meet the new networking features coming to a Windows 8.1 device near you. These features and network capabilities, taking advantage of NFC-tagged and Wi-Fi connected devices, are dedicated to leverage the mobile productivity. These features include the following:

  • Native Miracast wireless display: Project your screen wireless-ly without any special hardware involved; simply project your content to a Miracast-enabled device by pairing the device through Wi-Fi Direct using NFC. Miracast will then use the available Wi-Fi connection to allow you to project your device’s screen wire-free.
  • NFC tap-to-pair printing: Need to print a file from your Windows 8.1 device ? Simply tap your device to any NFC-enabled printer and there you have it. No need to search your network for the right printer or even buy a new “special” printer for that matter; just put an NFC tag on your existing printers to enable this functionality.
  • Wi-Fi Direct printing: Send a print command to Wi-Fi Direct printers without the need to install additional drivers or software on your device. This feature enables a peer-to-peer like network between the device and the printer.
  • Broadband tethering – Share your internet by turning your Windows 8.1 mobile broadband-enabled device into a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Read more here about the awesomeness of Windows 8.1:

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