Completed the code for my first Windows 8 Metro app

Yesterday, I finished up a simple Metro app. It’s my first one, and it’s really simple (I’ll let you know what it is when I actually have it in the store).

The main purpose of the app was for me to get everything in place and see what it takes to get an app in the Windows App Store. Then I’ll be better prepared for my more serious apps.

I’m still looking to get the graphics I need for the app (the logo and splash screen), so it will still be at least a few days until I can submit the app to the store.

Steps to submit an app to the Windows App Store

The first thing you need to do is sign up as a Windows Store developer. You can do that here https://appdev.microsoft.com/StorePortals/en-US/Account/signup/start.

I selected an individual account, since I don’t want to set up a company just yet. Let’s see if I can make some money at this before I start spending too much money.

The individual developer account did cost me US$ 49. That’s an annual fee.

Next, since I’m giving away the app for free, and hoping to generate ad revenue, I signed up for an account with the Microsoft pubCenter at http://adsinapps.microsoft.com/en-US.

You’ll need to download the advertising SDK, which gives you an ad control in Visual Studio, so you can place ads on your app’s screen.

Something to remember, if you want to publish an ad-supported app, is that you need to set the age rating to 12+ and you need to include the additional licensing terms listed here http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/advertising-windows-store-submission%28v=msads.10%29.aspx

You’ll also want to run the Windows App Certification Kit (get it at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/apps/hh694081.aspx). When I ran it on my simple app, everything passed, except for the fact that I still had the default logo and splash screen for the project.

My next Metro apps

While I wait for the graphics, and however long it takes for an app to go live after submitting it to the App Store, I have a couple other projects I’m thinking of doing next. They’re both a little more involved and will need to store data – probably roaming data.

The first is an app version of my Decision Assistant program – currently written as a web site at http://howcanidecide.com. I want to make a couple of changes to the workflow (there’s one place where I think users may be getting confused, since they always select a default value, even when they obviously don’t want to use the default). A nice thing with a Metro app is that much of the account security can be handled by Windows.

The second app is a goal tracking app. I’ve built a desktop version before, but want to make some big changes to it. It may be a little while before I start building this app.

MVC 4 to Metro App

So, to help other people out there who may have existing MVC 4 websites that they want to make Metro apps for, I’m going to make posts about converting my Decision Assistant website to an app. The posts should probably be weekly, unless some huge client project comes up.

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