Windows Phone 7: New App Hub Tips



Todd Brix gives a summary here of the new features included in the App Hub Update that went live on July 18th. In this post I’ll review a couple of the new features and tips for using them.

App Name now determined by XAP, not entry in App Hub.

Previously you provided the application name in the description step (step 2) See screenshot below. You needed to specify this for each language your application supported. (See below.)

Pre-July 2011 App Hub Update - app name provided by developer for each language app supported.

Now with the App Hub update, the application name is derived from the Title attribute of the App element in WMAppManifest.xml:

<App xmlns="" ProductID="{xxx5d2d6-ebb1-4e5b-bd12-7e1371696e80}" Title="People and Places" 
       RuntimeType="Silverlight" Version="" Genre="apps.normal" 
       Author="Mike Francis" Description="" Publisher="Mike Francis">

This is great improvement since now the application title is maintained in one place: your application. See this blog post for information on localizing the application title.  App Hub will automatically retrieve the appropriate localized application title for each supported language. See here for a sample project with this implemented. Try creating a test submission (you can delete it later) and upload the resulting XAP file from the sample. Note how App Hub is creating a language version for each language supported. Also note how the localized application name is automatically populated.


Default Language now must be specified in Project Settings

As stated in this forum post, the App Hub now requires a default language specified in your application. This is the ‘Neutral Language’ assembly setting in Project settings.

  1. Right Click on your project in Solution Explorer
  2. Application | Assembly Information. . .
  3. Neutral Language
  4. Pick a specific default language. For example for English:


App artwork can now be specified in one click!

In the ‘Describe’ section (step 2) of your application submission, you provide the screenshots and icons that are used by the PC and Phone versions of Marketplace. Another nice AppHub feature is the ability to upload all of the artwork at once. You can do this as long as you have the art work in the same directory. For my application, I have created a directory <Project Name>\Images\Marketplace and placed my icons and screenshots there. Then when submitting my app, in the ‘Artwork’ section of step 2, I click ‘Browse”, and multi-select all of the artwork in this folder. App Hub intelligently associates the correct size icon with the corresponding App Hub icon slot. See video below.

App Hub: One click application art upload

Tip: This feature reads the screenshot images in alphabetical order, so if you care about the order of your screenshots, rename them so that the filenames are in alpha-order. This way when the tool reads in your screenshots, they will be in the order you expect. For example, (1ScreenShot.png, 1ScreenShot.png, etc.)

screenshots in alpha order



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