Category Archives: Microsoft Store

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Publishing times for Microsoft Store just got faster! – Windows Developer Blog

Updating your Microsoft Store listing is the best way to let customers know more about your app or game. You might want to update the description to call out key features, or add new screenshots and video trailers to help your customers see what your product does best. At times, you may also want to update your app’s or game’s price, either on an indefinite basis or as a limited-time sale to entice new customers to make a purchase.We’ve heard your feedback that you’d like to be able to see these types of changes in the Microsoft Store sooner. We’ve been working hard to improve our publishing times, and we’re pleased to announce that starting today, submissions that make these types of changes without updating packages will be published faster than ever before. After these submissions go through the certification process (which is often completed in a few hours but may take up to three business days), these updates will be reflected in Microsoft Store in less than one hour!
It’s important to note that updated app packages that you submit to Microsoft Store aren’t affected by these improved processing times, so it could still take up to three business days before submissions with updated packages are published in Microsoft Store. (If no packages are updated, the changes should be published within the hour after the certification process is complete.) If you ever experience a delay of longer than three business days for a submission to be published, we encourage you to contact support so that we can investigate.
Note that when publishing a product for the first time, we recommend submitting at least three days before you want your app or game to appear in the Store. For more precise release scheduling, you can use the Schedule section of the Pricing and availability page when you create your submission to specify a precise release date and time (in UTC or in each local market’s time zone, with the ability to use different dates for different markets if desired).
We hope you’ll find the publishing time improvement makes it easier for you to adjust your pricing quickly or get updated listing details in front of your customer base more quickly.

Xbox Adaptive Controller arriving September, now available for pre-order – Windows Experience Blog

Today, over at Xbox Wire, we shared that, starting today, pre-orders for the Xbox Adaptive Controller are now available in the following markets:
Australia, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK and the United States.

A few weeks ago, we unveiled the Xbox Adaptive Controller, a first-of-its-kind controller designed for gamers with limited mobility. To say we’ve been overwhelmed by the response is an understatement.  The thoughts and sentiments that our fans shared have been thoughtful, heart-felt and emotionally moving. Introducing the Xbox Adaptive Controller to the world has helped reinforce the notion of exactly how powerful inclusion can be—for organizations, for groups and for individuals.
Pre-order an Xbox Adaptive Controller
Fans can visit Xbox.com, Microsoft Store online or a local Microsoft Store retail location to pre-order the Xbox Adaptive Controller, which will begin shipping in September 2018. Pre-orders in Canada will be available soon. We know there are more gamers who can benefit from the Xbox Adaptive Controller in even more countries, and we’re working towards expanding the list of market availability in the future.
We’ll have more to share about the Xbox Adaptive Controller in the coming months as we approach the September 2018 release, and look forward to hearing even more fan feedback from gamers everywhere.
If you’ve been looking forward to getting your hands on an Xbox Adaptive Controller, pre-order today by visiting Microsoft Store!

Xbox Adaptive Controller arriving September, now available for pre-order
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Updated June 11, 2018 11:15 am

Native Ads on the Microsoft Ad Monetization Platform – Windows Developer Blog

We at Microsoft are committed to helping developers maximize their monetization through ads. The Microsoft ad mediation service along with the Microsoft Advertising SDK are the two key components of  Microsoft’s new ad monetization platform that dynamically optimizes ad partner configurations to drive the highest yield for the developers and deliver innovative Ad experiences for consumers.Native Ads is a component-based Ad format that gives publishers the flexibility of placing the individual components of an Ad – title, image, logo, description, call to action text – to provide the best possible fit to the look and feel of the rest of the app. This enables the developers to use fonts, colors and animations of their own to stitch unobtrusive user experiences in their app while earning high yield from advertising. For advertisers as well, this provides high performing placements since the ads experience is tightly built into the app and users tend to interact a lot more with such sponsored content. The click through rates (CTR) tend to be thus higher with Native Ads which results in better monetization compared to traditional Ad experiences such as Banner Ads.
Last year, we announced an invitation only pilot for Native Ads support. At Microsoft Build 2018, we happily announced that we have made this capability generally available to all developers.
What’s new in Native Ads?
We have worked on enhancing the stability and completeness of the Native Ads experience since we announced the pilot. We have added several Native Ad partners such as AppNexus, Microsoft app install ads and Revcontent to serve on the Native Ad inventory. We are working actively to bring additional demand partners such as MSN Content Recommendations and Taboola in the coming weeks.
How do I get started?
You need the latest version of the Microsoft Advertising SDK to get started with including Native Ads in your UWP applications. If you haven’t played around with the Microsoft Advertising SDK before this, please take a look at the Get Started guide. Also, please check out our guide and sample code on MSDN to quickly incorporate Native Ads into your application.
Examples of Native Ad integration:
PicsArt, a participant in our Native Ads preview program, was able to integrate Native Ads into their ‘Photo Studio’ application easily and provide a compelling and immersive Ad experience to their users.
 “Implementation of Native ads was a smooth and seamless experience. The creation of an ad unit to its implementation was simple thanks to Microsoft’s comprehensive documentation.” – PicsArt 

Figure 1 Example of a Native Ad in the PicsArt application ‘PicsArt Photo Studio’ 
Good2Create, another participant in the pilot, was able to stitch Native Ads that blend beautifully into their application ‘Wallpaper Studio.’

Figure 2 Example of a Native Ad in the Good2Create application ‘Wallpaper Studio 10’    
What’s next in Native ads?
We will continue to build on the Native ads story by adding more Native Ad partners and offer enhanced creative experiences to help developers monetize better using Native Ads. Please reach us at aiacare@microsoft.com with your questions and comments.
Updated May 29, 2018 9:01 am

Updated Microsoft Store App Developer Agreement and GDPR

As of May 23rd, the Microsoft Store team has updated the Microsoft Store App Developer Agreement (ADA). The next time you log in to the Dev Center dashboard, you will be prompted to reaccept the ADA before you can update or manage your apps.
In the new version, we are making a few changes to clarify the restrictions around using and storing personal information in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). For more information, you can view the full ADA and change history.
Note: This ADA update DOES NOT include the new Microsoft Store revenue model announced at Microsoft Build 2018.
What is GDPR?
On May 25, 2018, a European privacy law, the General Data Protection Regulation is set to take effect.
The GDPR imposes new rules on companies, government agencies, non-profits, and other organizations that offer goods and services to people in the European Union (EU), or that collect and analyze data tied to EU residents. The GDPR applies no matter where you are located.
Under GDPR, what constitutes personal information?
You can refer to European Commission’s official website on data protection for more information, but we suggest you confer with your own legal or regulatory compliance team to address specific questions you have.
Learn more about GDPR
To learn more about GDPR, please visit the European Commission’s official website on data protection.
We also encourage you to visit Microsoft.com/GDPR for resources and best practices for GDPR compliance.  You can even assess your GDPR compliance with a quick, interactive 10-question evaluation.

A new product badge for Microsoft Store applications

As many of you know, building quality apps is quite a commitment and investment in time. Once your app is in the Store, the next challenge is getting the word out about your new title and driving traffic to your product. Today, we’d like to announce a new tool for marketing your apps in your own blogs and websites. We’d like to introduce our new web badge for Microsoft Store products.

The new badge will render in your own website pulling localized logo, pricing (including sale pricing!), ratings and artwork directly from the store catalog. To render this badge for 8 Zip simply embed this script using its Store Id (9wzdncrfhwb8). Please note you must add the Id in two places in the badge script, the “class=” and inside the “mspb-“.

<div id="mspb-nc9jl2ngc1i" class="9wzdncrfhwb8"></div>
<script src="https://storebadge.azureedge.net/src/badge-1.6.1.js"></script>
<script>
mspb(‘9wzdncrfhwb8’, function(badge) {
document.getElementById(‘mspb-nc9jl2ngc1i’).innerHTML = badge;
});
</script>

The button click on the badge will direct your customers to the proper Product Description Page where they make the actual purchase. You can add multiple badges to any single page, just make sure they all use a unique div Id, as shown above.
To see the badge in action, check out XBOX’s @majornelson (www.majornelson.com) who is using the badge to promote Xbox content on his blog.
Example post here: https://majornelson.com/2018/05/03/xbox-live-gold-members-play-for-honor-xcom-2-and-just-cause-3-for-free-this-weekend/.
That’s it! Feel free to promote your apps and games on your own sites.

Microsoft Store announces PC digital game gifting

Last Fall, the Microsoft Store enabled gifting of select Xbox One digital games, Xbox One downloadable game content (durables only), and Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass subscriptions. This feature has been a huge hit with our fans and has made buying presents for friends and family even easier, especially around the holidays.
Today, the Microsoft Store team announced over at Xbox Wire that they’ve expanded digital gifting to include PC games and PC downloadable game content (e.g. map packs, skins). Further, all Xbox One games are now eligible for digital gifting. Head over here to learn how to get started!

Microsoft Store announces PC digital game gifting
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10 cool tech deals for moms and grads this month

May is a month of celebration. Whether it’s for students approaching graduation or the mothers who give us endless love, support and guidance in life, we honor loved ones with gifts that will bring a smile to their face. Whether you are shopping for the perfect gift for Mom or a new laptop for your college-bound freshman, be sure to check out the great deals at Microsoft Store and other partner retailers this month!
Save $300 on Surface Laptop devices starting on 5/12-5/14 in the US and PR.
Surface Laptop
Save up to $225 on select Windows Mixed Reality Headsets today through 5/16 in the US and PR.
HP Windows Mixed Reality headset
Save up to $50 on select Fitbit Wearables, like the Fitbit Ionic, today through 5/12 in the US and PR.
Fitbit Ionic
Save $40 on the Samsung Gear IconX Wireless Earbuds today through 5/12 in the US and PR.
Samsung Gear IconX Wireless Earbuds
Save $120 online or $140 in store at Staples on the Acer Aspire 3 (model A315-21-95KF) today through 5/12 in the US. A solid performer that provides you with a great bang for your buck by meeting everyday needs with fast processing power, a large 15.6-inch HD display and all the latest ports.
Acer Aspire 3
Save up to $100 on the ASUS VivoBook Pro 15 N580 at Best Buy today through 5/19 in the US. The ASUS VivoBook Pro 15 is a slim and lightweight high-performance laptop powered by a 7th Generation Intel Core i7 processor and features a 1080p FHD display, high-quality 1050 gaming-grade graphics, audio co-developed by Harman Kardon and secure login with Windows Hello.
ASUS VivoBook Pro 15
Save 20% on the HP ENVY Laptop x360 – 15t at HP.comwith promo code ‘MSENVY20’ starting today through 5/15 in the US. Optimized for Windows Ink, the ENVY x360 draws out a more productive, more creative you.
HP ENVY Laptop x360
Get up to 20% off on the Lenovo ThinkPad E580 at Lenovo.com today through 5/13 in the US. With this economical 15” laptop,Mom will be able to hear you clearly when you Skype her on her special day as this laptop comes with Skype-certified audio.
Lenovo ThinkPad E580
Save $200 through Mother’s Day on select LG Gram models today through 5/13 in the US. The LG Gram 13’’and 15’’ are reliable, portable and powerful, with up to 19 hours of battery life and Windows 10 features like Windows Hello and Cortana*.
LG Gram 15”
Save up to $150 on the Samsung Notebook 7 Spin on Samsung.com and at Best Buy today through 5/12 in the US.
Samsung Notebook 7 Spin 2018
Head over to the Microsoft Store, in person or online, to take advantage of all these great deals!
*US only. **Cortana available in select markets.

A new Microsoft Store revenue share is coming

Microsoft Store continues to evolve to be the best destination for Windows 10 users to discover and download Microsoft-verified applications that deliver predictable performance. Microsoft Store is also the best destination on Windows 10 for developers to reach new audiences and gain new customers. We’ll focus on the infrastructure, so you can focus on building the best app and growing your business as a developer. To that end, we are excited about the announcement Joe Belfiore will be making at Build 2018 regarding a new Microsoft Store fee structure coming later this year.
A better revenue share for developers
Starting later this year, consumer applications (not including games) sold in Microsoft Store will deliver to developers 95% of the revenue earned from the purchase of your application or any in-app products in your application, when a customer uses a deep link to get to and purchase your application. When Microsoft delivers you a customer through any other method, such as in a collection on Microsoft Store or any other owned Microsoft properties, and purchases your application, you will receive 85% of the revenue earned from the purchase of your application or any in-app products in your application
The new fee structure is applicable to purchases made on Windows 10 PCs, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone and Surface Hub devices and excludes purchases on Xbox consoles.
A new way for developers to monetize
These changes to our current Microsoft Store fee represent a new way for you to monetize on the Windows platform. With the new fee structure, Microsoft is only accessing an additional fee when we contribute to you acquiring a new user. These changes enable us to create a world where developers are rewarded for connecting customers with experiences they love in a secure, reliable way.
The fee structure will be defined in detail in an upcoming revision to the App Developer Agreement later this year. Visit this page for current details and to sign up for a notification when the new fee structure goes into effect. Also, please refer to the FAQ below.
What applications will the new fee structure apply to?
Any consumer non-gaming app published to the Microsoft Store for PC, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone or Surface Hub.
When does the new fee structure go into effect?
Later this year (2018). We’ll prompt you to accept a new version of the App Developer Agreement that outlines the Microsoft Store fee structure in detail. The new fee structure will apply to purchases made after the date listed in the App Developer Agreement.
Will the new fee structure apply to games or game subscriptions?
No. The new fee structure only applies to consumer apps on PC, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone or Surface Hub. Apps categorized as Games in the Store will not be eligible for the new fee structure, even if they are available on those device types.
How does the Microsoft Store fee apply to subscriptions and other add-ons (in-app purchases)?
The new fee structure will apply to non-game, consumer app subscriptions and add-ons (in-app purchases). The fee applied to these purchases will be determined by how the user originally acquired the application. The new default 5% Store fee will apply for all transactions using Microsoft’s commerce platform and, if your customer uses a deep link to acquire your application, that’s all you’ll owe. The extra 10% customer acquisition cost will apply when Microsoft delivers you the customer through any other method, such as via a Store collection or a Microsoft Store spotlight.
All future subscription purchases and add-on (in-app) purchases for a user will be assessed the same fee percentage that was assessed when the user first acquired the application.
Will the new fee structure apply to purchases made via Microsoft Store for Business? Microsoft Store for Education?
No. The new fee only applies to individual purchases of consumer apps on PC, Windows Mixed Reality, Windows Phone or Surface Hub. If you allow your app to be offered via organizational licensing in Microsoft Store for Business and/or Microsoft Store for Education, the current Store fee will continue to apply to those purchases.
What about applications that are not games, but are available to customers on Xbox?
Any purchases made by customers on Xbox consoles, whether the product is an app or a game, will use the current fee structure.
What about applications that are available on both Microsoft Store for Windows 10 PC and Microsoft Store for Xbox One?
The new fee structure will apply to non-game consumer app acquisitions by individuals on Microsoft Store for Windows 10 PC (and the other device families mentioned above). The current fee structure will apply to acquisitions on Microsoft Store for Xbox One devices.
What will the fee structure be for applications that are available to earlier OS versions (Windows 8.x and/or Windows Phone 8.x)?
The new fee structure will apply to apps available on Microsoft Store on earlier OS versions (Windows 8.x and/or Windows Phone 8.x).

The 3 improvements to Dev Center you should know about

We’ve been working hard on Windows Dev Center and wanted to share some of the improvements we’ve made for you, our developers.
You can now submit PWAs to the Microsoft Store
First, we’re excited to announce that you can submit your Progressive Web App (PWA) to the Microsoft Store through Windows Dev Center. PWAs are web apps, progressively enhanced with modern web technologies to provide a more app-like experience. Publishing a PWA to the Microsoft Store give you full access to everything Windows Dev Center has to offer including control over how your app appears in the Microsoft Store, the ability to view and respond to feedback (reviews and comments), insights into telemetry (installs, crashes, shares, etc.), and the ability to monetize your app.
Submitting a PWA to the Microsoft Store requires generating an app package upload file containing your PWA first, which can be done via the free PWA Builder tool. To learn more about PWAs and some of the steps required to publish to Microsoft Store, check out this blog.
Health report enhancements
We’ve added new charts to the Health report. You can use this additional info to help you make informed decisions on improvements you can make to your application to keep your customers happy.
Crash-free sessions and devices (Health report):  Shows the percent of devices or user sessions that did not experience a crash.
This allows you to understand how the number of crashes you are seeing affect your users. For example, an app could have 10,000 crashes in one day. If 90% of your devices are affected, then you would probably classify that as critical and act to fix it right away. However, if that only represents 5% of devices using your app, the priority might be lower.
This chart has two tabs:
Crash free devices: the % of unique devices that did not experience a failure
Crash free sessions: the % of unique user sessions that did not experience a failure

Stack prevalence (Failure details page): Shows the top stacks that contributed to the failure, ordered by percentage.
The stack prevalence table displays the most common failure paths, ordered by percentage of all stacks. This lets you quickly see which are the most common call stacks/paths to a point of failure, so you can best apply your time to implement fixes with the greatest impact. In addition, the frame where the failure occurred is bolded in the call stack.

Also, we have made failure downloads [CABs] more discoverable on the failure details page by adding a filter so you can easily find all “Failures with downloads” – instead of having to search through the report.

Improvements to the Store listing page
We have made changes to the Store listing page, where you provide the text and images that your customers will see when viewing your app’s listing in the Microsoft Store. With these changes you will see additional text to the right of sections within the Store listing page that help provide clarity on what you should enter in each field.  Some sections even have direct links to documentation.

Two major sections we’ve redesigned based on your feedback are the “Store logos” and “Additional art assets” sections. We now provide additional guidance to help you understand how each of these assets are used.

You’ll find additional info throughout the Store listing page to help you use fields effectively.
As always, we encourage you to use the Feedback link in the upper right corner of the Windows Dev Center dashboard to share your thoughts and suggestions. Your feedback helps us build the best capabilities and experiences possible. You can also use the Windows Developer Feedback User Voice site to share platform capability requests and ideas around improving the Windows developer platform.

Play your favorite music, movies, and more with iTunes: now available in Microsoft Store

Now you can download iTunes from Microsoft Store and easily play your favorite music, movies, and more—right from your Windows 10 PC. iTunes is also home to Apple Music, where you can listen ad-free to over 45 million songs and download your favorites to enjoy without using WiFi.

iTunes is free to download, and you can try Apple Music free for three months. There’s no commitment, and you can cancel anytime.

Play your favorite music, movies, and more with iTunes: now available in Microsoft Store
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