Up until now, to access the Marketplace on your computer, you’d have to install the Zune software first. Sort of irritating to know that to merely access the application store, you’d have to download ~100 MB software and install it. Personally, I find it very, very irritating.
But now, Microsoft seems to have realised that it’s not really fair to force the users into doing something. And so, they have given a sneak peek at the Web version. Note that they’re being secretive, and will release it only when the Mango update would arrive this fall along with dozens of new devices. We’re talking about a September-October date. Quite a long time really.
In a blog post, Todd Brix, Microsoft, said –
The Web version of Marketplace will launch with the new OS later this year and give customers another vehicle for discovering your great apps and games. And as a Windows Phone developer, you get all of the added visibility with no extra work. Just as on the phone, customers will be able to browse the full catalog, view screenshots, read application details and reviews and choose from all of the supported languages for that app. This offers customers another way to more thoroughly and confidently browse your apps from the comfort of their PC’s web browser. With the Web version of Marketplace, we will also have more placement areas in which to provide featured apps with extra visibility and merchandising possibilities.
You can buy and install apps from the Web version of the Marketplace. Hit the Download/Install button and the app gets installed on your phone OTA via SMS or Email.
Sounds cool eh?