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It has been less than four months since we introduced the first public preview for Windows Azure Mobile Services and in this short time we have seen continual improvements to the service offering including:

· SDKs for Windows Store, Windows Phone 8 and iOS app

· Auth using Microsoft Account, Facebook, Google and Twitter

· Push Notification support via WNS, MPNS and APNS

· Structured storage

· Deployments in East and West US and European data centres

Mobile Services December 2012 Update Features

New functionality has been released for Mobile Application developers on all platforms.

· Scheduler (a.k.a “CRON”): you can now run a server script on a pre-set schedule.

· Availability in the North Europe datacenter: you can now deploy your mobile services in Europe to enjoy reduced latency for your European customers.

· Command-line support: you can now use the Windows Azure command line tools to create and manage your mobile services.

Interested in getting started with Azure Mobile Services

Azure Academic Passes

Educators

Learn how Windows Azure can be used in curricula, support research endeavours, and enable student projects. Institution administrators can explore how to use Windows Azure for infrastructural and application needs

Would you like to start teaching the cloud? Apply for a grant - http://www.windowsazure.com/education

Grant applications are designated for faculty who are teaching Windows Azure in their curricula as well as faculty preparing to integrate Windows Azure into their curricula. Educator Grant awards are subject to demand and availability.  Educators will receive a special 12-month pass for their exclusive use, and may request 5-month non-renewable passes for distribution to their students.  Each pass is valid from the date of redemption. Educators may apply for passes for each of the courses they are teaching, and may only distribute these passes to students registered as part of their educational institution.

Students

Got a great idea for a Windows Azure project?  Compete in the Imagine Cup and you can get access to Windows Azure for 9 months and could win a trip to St. Petersburg, Russia, and up to $10,000 in the 2013 Windows Azure Challenge! Get all the details and get started at http://www.ImagineCup.com/.

Not ready to  take the Imagine Cup challenge?  As a student you can take advantage of the free Windows Azure trial offer and run a Small Windows Azure instance with a 1GB SQL Azure database for 90 days*.

Get Started with Code Samples

We have released 6 new sample applications that demonstrate step-by-step how users can use the key functionality available within Windows Azure Mobile Services from your Windows Store apps.  Each of these samples is released in both XAML/C# and HTML/JS in the Dev Center for Windows Store apps MSDN Code Gallery

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Event Buddy Sample - Storage, Auth and Push Notifications with Mobile Services (New)

In this sample you will start with a disconnected Windows Store app that manages events & sessions. You will connect it to Windows Azure Mobile Service to provide structured storage, auth using Twitter or Facebook and push notifications.

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Get Started with Data in Windows Azure Mobile Services Tutorial Sample

This sample supports the Get started with data in Mobile Services tutorial, which shows you how to use Windows Azure Mobile Services to leverage data in a Windows Store app. 

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Visual Studio Toolbox – Using Mobile Services in a Windows 8 App (New)

In episode 56 of Visual Studio Toolbox Robert Green demonstrates a sample Windows 8 app that uses Azure Mobile Services. This sample is the corresponding app which manages customers and their projects.  The code shows you how you connect to the mobile service and how to perform CRUD operations on data.

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Authenticate Microsoft Account, Facebook, Twitter and Google w/ Mobile Services (New)

This sample demonstrates how you can easily wire up your Windows Store application to require your users to Authenticate against well know social identity such as Microsoft Account, Facebook, Twitter and Google using Windows Azure Mobile Services.

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Tile, Toast and Badge Push Notifications using Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

This sample demonstrates how you can easily register a channel in Windows Azure Mobile Services and then send different types of push notifications such as tile, toast and badge notifications from a server side script to your client application.

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Raw Notifications using Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

This sample demonstrates how you can easily send Raw push notifications to your Windows Store apps using Windows Azure Mobile Services.

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Send Push Notifications at Periodic Interval with the Mobile Services Scheduler (New)

This sample demonstrates how you can offload work from your Windows Store app to be processed on a scheduled basis using Windows Azure Mobile Services. It shows how to create a Scheduled Script that polls a feed and send a Push Notification to update the tile with latest news.

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Geolocation sample end to end using Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

This sample provides an end to end location scenario with a Windows Store app using Bing Maps and a Windows Azure Mobile Services backend. It shows how to add places to the Map, store place coordinates in a Mobile Services table, and how to query for places near your location.

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Enqueue and Dequeue messages with Windows Azure Mobile Services and Services Bus (New)

My Store - This sample demonstrates how you can enqueue and dequeue messages from your Windows Store apps into a Windows Azure Service Bus Queue via Windows Azure Mobile Services. This code sample builds out an ordering scenario with both a Sales and Storeroom and app.

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Capture, Store and Email app Feedback using Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

This sample shows how you can implement a Feedback charm option in your Windows Store application and submit the feedback to be both stored Windows Azure Mobile Services and emailed directly to you.

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Upload File to Windows Azure Blob Storage using Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

This demonstrates how to store your files such as images, videos, docs or any binary data off device in the cloud using Windows Azure Blob Storage. In this example we focus on capturing and uploading images, with the same approach you can upload any binary data to Blob Storage.

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Create a Game Leaderboard using Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

The My Trivia sample demonstrates how you can easily add, update and view a leaderboard from your Windows Store applications using Windows Azure Mobile Services.

   

Videos

We just launched a new Windows Azure Mobile Services series to help people get started with each of the Mobile Services features.  In addition to the previous channel9 videos from Scott Guthrie and Josh. We have published 8 new getting started and how-to videos for Windows 8 & Mobile Services.  We will add more videos to this series for iOS and Windows Phone 8 soon.

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Introduction to Windows Azure Mobile Services

Creating your first app using the Windows Azure Mobile Services Quick Start (New)

Connecting your Windows Store app to Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

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Validate and Modify Data with Server Scripts in Windows Azure Mobile Services(New)

Getting Started with Authentication in Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

Authenticate and Authorize users with Server Scripts in Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)

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Add Push Notifications to your apps with Windows Azure Mobile Services (New)


Getting Started with the Windows Azure Mobile Services Scheduler (New)


iOS Support in Windows Azure Mobile Services

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Creating your first iOS app with the Windows Azure Mobile Services Quick Start (New)

 

If you have any Feedback re the use of Windows Azure Mobile Services below is a list of the currently available feedback channels available.

· Tech Q&A – Use this MSDN forum

· Feature voting – Use this UserVoice forum

· Customer Feedback – please email this DL