General information when developing for Windows Phone 8

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In this tutorial a general development information for the Windows Phone 8 environment will be presented, covering topics such as project structure, accessing native capabilities using Apache Cordova, environment-specific & design resources.

Project structure

A Windows Phone 8 app that is developed by using IBM MobileFirst Platform comprises the following components:

  • A CS main class that hosts an instance of a WebView component
  • A set of CS and JavaScript libraries that provide access to various device features and capabilities
  • Web application code that is provided by the developer, that is written in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, and that runs in one or more instances of the browser, hosted within the Main class
  • All application components, including the web code that the developer provides, packaged into a single Windows Phone 8 project

If using a source control management system (such as Rational Team Concert™, Git, Subversion and so on), see the user documentation topic: "Integrating with source control system".

Designing for Windows Phone 8

It is useful to always consult with the Microsoft Design and Develop websites when you develop applications.

  • Design:
  • Develop:

Environment-specific images

If implementing the Application Bar feature in an app, you must put the various icons in the appropriate folder, in your-project-name\apps\your-app-name\windowsphone8\nativeResources\applicationBar.

MobileFirst builder then copies these images to the native folder of the generated project.

The icons of the Application Bar must be 100x100 pixels and have a white foreground on a transparent background by using an alpha channel.
The Application Bar colorizes the icon according to the current style settings. Using colored icons can result in an unpredictable display.
Images that are not in the acceptable dimensions are scaled to fit, which can potentially lower the overall image quality of the Application Bar icon.
The circle that is displayed on each icon button is drawn by the Application Bar. Do not include it in the source image.

Apache Cordova

The Apache Cordova framework can be used in Windows Phone 8 applications to access the native elements of a device, such as contacts, geo-location services, media services, or the accelerometer.

For more information about Apache Cordova development, see the Apache Cordova overview tutorial.


To publish a Windows Phone 8 application, a developer must be a registered Windows Phone Developer to submit your applications to the Windows Phone Store.
Registration can be done at

After registering, prerequisites for your application certification by Microsoft must first be met, and only afterwards submission of the application for review can be made.
For more information about the Windows Phone Store application deployment, see the Microsoft MSDN Library website (search for "Windows Phone Store development").

Last modified on January 31, 2017