Windows 8 Development Tips #10: Take advantage of promotions

Brent Schooley / Monday, March 11, 2013

Let’s face it, many of you have app ideas but you’re not building the app.  Why?  I don’t know.  Maybe you need some motivation.  Maybe you’re worried you won’t get any return on your time investment.  Microsoft knows this, but they want your applications.  So they run promotions.  There have been a ton of them already.  Many people got Surfaces just for writing an app.  As long as there is still a relatively small number of applications compared to other platforms, you can expect the trend to continue.  Your best bet is to take advantage of them.  I’m going to introduce you to the big one that’s going on right now and when you’re done reading this I want you to go build an app.

Keep the Cash

This has to be the coolest and easiest promotion to take advantage of yet.  You’re going to want to do this.  It’s called Keep the Cash and it’s dead simple: you submit and get an app accepted to the store between now and June 30th and you get a $100 Virtual Visa Gift Card.  That’s $100 bucks to spend on pretty much whatever you want (like, this for instance).  That would be a sweet enough deal to motivate many of you I’m sure.  Allow me to sweet the pot for you.  You can do that for up to 10 apps.  That’s a sum total of $1000 for submitting and getting apps accepted to the store.  It gets even better if you’re a Windows Phone developer since you can do the same for 10 apps in that store as well.  That’s up to $2000 in Virtual Visa Gift Cards.  I don’t know about you, but I can think of quite a few things I could buy with that.

Ok, what’s the catch?

I knew you were going to ask that.  That’s the best part.  There is no catch.  There are a few guidelines but they are incredibly easy to conform to:

  • Offer good only to legal residents of the 50 United States & D.C. aged 18 or older who are a U.S. registered Windows Store and/or Windows Phone Store developer.
  • Must register for this offer at publish an app to the Windows Store and/or Windows Phone Store between March 8, 2013 and June 30, 2013.
  • All apps must comply with the (Windows Store App Developer Agreement) and the App Certification Requirements and must provide their Windows Store and/or Windows Phone Store Publisher name and ID (exact match to their Store developer dashboard) and the external URL to the corresponding app.
  • All non-game apps must conform to design guidelines for Windows Store and Windows Phone Store; work as described and have a distinct and substantial content and purpose, including functionality e.g., above and beyond launching a webpage.
  • The app may not be a modification, rework, redesign or other change to an existing and previously published app.
  • Apps submitted with the same code base or clones are not eligible.
  • Apps that have been previously published to the Windows Store and/or Windows Phone Store do not qualify as a new app for purposes of this published offer.
  • Offer good only to the first 10,000 qualified applications published in the Windows Store and/or Windows Phone Store, or until the end of the promotional period, whichever comes first.

That last one is probably the closest thing to a catch.  This is first come, first served so get cracking!  Note that basically those bullet points boil down to:

  • Write new apps.
  • If they aren’t games, conform to the design guidelines (consult this or this for help)
  • Do it 10 times per store and do it before the total reaches 10,000.

Like I said, it’s simple.  Now get to it!


If you have any questions or comments, please comment below or find me on Twitter @brentschooley.  You can also email me at