updated 08:55 pm EDT, Wed July 20, 2011
Microsoft dev update helps Live in Android, iOS
Microsoft on Wednesday outlined an updated developer platform that should help bring its services into third-party apps on smartphones, including those using its competitors' platforms. Apps on Android, iOS, and Windows Phone 7 now just need a basic client link and to point the app to an OAuth 2 sign-in. The link gives them access to information from Windows Live's core services, including Hotmail, Windows Live Messenger, and SkyDrive cloud storage.
The full extent of access wasn't detailed for the public, but it should theoretically allow for more easily developing a third-party mail or instant messaging app as well as sharing files to or from SkyDrive.
Microsoft has often given its services privileged access on its own platforms and apps. In mobile, however, its combination of a young platform and lower market share has meant having to ease support on competing platforms to make sure the services get recognition sooner or for a wider audience. The company has been in the unusual position of publishing apps like Photosynth first for iOS, in part because of more robust development tools but also out of a need for a wider reach than just Windows Phone.