New revenue opportunities for Windows developers?

So I was in two minds as to what the make the title for this blog post but having received the email below from microsoft this morning my immediate take away wasn’t about the ‘new opportunities’ but about the decreased cut of app proceeds imposed on developers.  here is the email:

Adding new revenue opportunities for you is a key priority for Windows Store. To attract more store customers, we recently launched new Windows Store and Xbox gift cards. Gift cards are now available at thousands of new retail locations and online stores in 41 markets. Windows and Xbox gift cards work interchangeably and can be used on both Windows and Xbox stores. Sales associates will promote gift cards to customers who want to give gifts, buy apps without a credit card, or fund a child’s account without the worry of overspending.

With the recent expansion and because gift cards have higher costs due to packaging costs and revenue sharing with channel partners, a Commerce Expansion Adjustment will be added to app and in-app product purchases made with gift cards. The Commerce Expansion Adjustment is an additional percentage on top of the normal Store Fee (percentage of Net Receipts) that is deducted in calculating the App Proceeds payable for apps or in-app product transactions using gift cards.
The Commerce Expansion Adjustment for gift cards will take effect in
specified markets in March 2016 at a rate of 2.24%. Details about how the Commerce Expansion Adjustment is calculated and deducted from App Proceeds can be found in the App Developer Agreement.
Windows Dev Center allows you to choose which markets you publish your apps and how you price them in each market. In doing so, you may want to consider if the Commerce Expansion Adjustment applies in a specific market and factor that into your market pricing strategy going forward.
For further details about the Commerce Expansion Adjustment and the list of markets where it applies see your
App Developer Agreement and Windows Dev Center.
Thank you,
The Windows Dev Center Team

I am sad to see that there is a need to cut developer proceeds in this way.  I have found it difficult to justify the development of apps for Windows and Windows Mobile (in spite of the fact that I have found the process enjoyable and the tooling excellent) and have felt forced into looking at reducing (if not completely eliminating) the time I am able to devote to developing apps for the Microsoft store.

Sad times.

 

Update

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It is with some sadness that I have decided to withdraw all my apps from the Windows Store.  I felt this was necessary in order  to clear the decks and prepare for future projects.

NB My understanding is that this process will take some time before it is reflected in the non availability of some 300 or so of my apps in the Windows and Mobile Store.

(Easy) Custom Web Tiles for Microsoft Band

My wife leaves for work quite early in the morning and a few times every year has to turn back and take a different route as a result of flooding.  Now that she has joined me in the ranks of ‘Band Wearer’ I thought I would look to see if I could set up any kind of flood notification for her so that she wouldn’t get so delayed.

Here are the steps I took:

 

Having previously come accross this site:

http://www.gaugemap.co.uk/

which covers flooding points accross the whole of the UK.

I picked out the particular point of interest (Haw bridge), which has it’s own twitter site here:

 

https://twitter.com/riverlevel_0030

 

Now, in the good old days getting an RSS eed from Twitter was a straightforward affair but now you have to go around the houses as the API requires a unique identifier for the feed.

I did some searching on the web and came accross this which looked to fit the bill:

 

http://www.labnol.org/internet/twitter-rss-feed/28149/

 

Following these instructions and substituting the above twitter feed I was able to end up with my own RSS feed of Haw Bridge Tweets:

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Perfect!  Now it was just a question of running through all the steps of the web tile maker here:

https://developer.microsoftband.com/WebTile/ChooseLayout

(Reproduced below)

image

image

badgeIcon(Icon)

… and i was good to go!

 

NB I have submitted the tile to Microsoft, if it passes muster (not sure if the google bit will) then you should be able to load it direct from the gallery using the “Microsoft Health” App on your device.

(See previous web band article here for another ‘getting started’)