The TouchDevelop Team is thrilled to announce a major update of the TouchDevelop app for Windows Phone 8 that brings you: unified experience with the TouchDevelop Web App, new language features, NFC, new speech APIs, new tile APIs. It also comes with a new set of script templates, and a whole new documentation system.

We’d like to thank all of our beta testers – we have heard and addressed many of the issues and requests we received from you!

If you have a Windows Phone 8 device then you can install the latest version from the Windows Phone Store.

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Is the update available on a Windows Phone 7 device?

No. This update is only available on Windows Phone 8 devices. Devices running a Windows Phone 7.x OS can continue to use the previous version of the TouchDevelop app.

Migrating from the old to the new app

If you have been using the previous TouchDevelop app v2.11, then you should first make sure that all you have published all of your scripts, or that they got successfully backed up to the cloud. You can view your latest backups online, or you can log in to the TouchDevelop Web App to see your scripts in the cloud.

After you update the app, when you log with the same credentials that you used before, then all of your scripts will get synchronized back to the updated app.

Unified experience, new language features

homeThe new TouchDevelop app for Windows Phone 8 is a complete re-implementation based on the same code base as the TouchDevelop Web App at touchdevelop.com. This means that you can use all of the new language features of the Web App, including pages and boxes, OAuth v2.0 support, new event handlers, uploading and searching for art, libraries using records, async web requests, JSON builder, and more.

The new TouchDevelop app for Windows Phone 8 is better than the Web App, as it gives you access to many more sensors and data providers: Calendar, Camera, Compass, Contacts, Gyroscope, Media, Microphone, Phone, Orientation, and now also NFC, Windows Phone speech APIs.

You can seamlessly switch between the new TouchDevelop app for Windows Phone 8 and the Web App that runs on iPad, iPhone, Android, PC, Mac (and also Windows Phone 8). When you log in with the same credentials, then all of your scripts will be synchronized between your devices.

New script templates and documentation system

When you tap on "create script", you will find a new set of new script templates that help you create different kinds of games and utility apps. The templates are integrated with the whole new documentation system that you can reach by tapping on the big "Docs" button in the "chat & learn" section.

Near Field Communication (NFC), Proximity

nfc Use Near Field Communication (NCF) to send and receive messages. NFC allows smart-phones and similar devices to establish radio communication with each other when they are in close proximity. Depending on your device capabilities, you can write tags, send messages and receive messages.

Learn more by trying out this ample script: nfc my music /kkuj - A little script that uses NFC to launch Nokia Music for the active song on another phone

New speech APIs

You have access to new speech APIs that use the speech engine built into the Windows Phone 8, not using any slow cloud service.
Sample script: voice to text to voice /uzmd A script that using speech recognition and text to speech together.

New tiles APIs

We simplified how to create your own tiles. You can use the new tiles APIs that make it easier to pin and use a default tile. The old tile APIs are obsolete and won’t work.

Wider live tiles

liveWhen you pin the new TouchDevelop app as a wide tile on your start screen, and enable push notifications in the settings in the app, then you will see your latest notifications on the tile.

You can turn off notifications if you no longer wish to receive them.

Other API changes

This app update no longer supports the radio APIs, as Windows Phone 8 does not currently support radio. This update also drops support for the home singleton and the motion APIs, as they were rarely used.

Will scripts written with the new app work on a Windows Phone 7 device?

As soon as you use new language features that were not available in the TouchDevelop v2.11 app for Windows Phone 7, then that script, and all scripts derived from it, will not be visible on a Windows Phone 7 device.

Can scripts exported as Windows Phone apps use all the new features?

Not yet. At this time, you can only export a script as a Windows Phone app for the Windows Phone Store if the script doesn’t use any of the new features (and is not derived from a script that uses a new feature). We will enable the export of Windows Phone 8 apps that use the new features in the near future.

Feedback

The new TouchDevelop app is a big change from the older app. We understand that you might be missing some particular functionality of the old app, or you might even find some bugs in the new app. Please don’t hesitate to send us feedback at touchdevelop@microsoft.com.

Stay in touch

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