Ethan Nagel, president of software development shop Nagel Technologies, says Silverlight could be used to quickly develop Web applications, such as a spreadsheet or an interface to a financial application, or perhaps an order entry system. "You use Silverlight instead of building standard Windows forms," he notes.
"For me as a business developer, you're always in a situation where you're trying to figure out what's the quickest way I can get this application out to my users, how can I make it easy to use," Nagel says. Silverlight can help developers avoid dealing with a Web framework that could be cumbersome, he adds: "I just think Silverlight is a way that you can develop these applications much more quickly and easily."
Early adopters are generally positive
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Nebraska, meanwhile, has not found any great use for Silverlight, notes Adam Brehm, a software developer at the company. But Brehm says he can see business application opportunities for the Pivot data visualization technology in Silverlight, and he's worked on a Silverlight-based, video-oriented coaching application geared to high school sports.
At BI Software, the company already is working on a business application for an insurer that will run on Windows Phone 7, says company president Darek Danielewski. He lauds Microsoft's new mobile phone software: "The fact that Microsoft decided to give a complete overhaul for the Windows phone, that gives me hope because the Windows Mobile platform was lagging for some time in terms of performance," Danielewski said. Developing for Windows Mobile was difficult, he added. "There were myriad platforms, myriad screen resolutions -- and it was always a challenge," Danielewski said.
Some Windows Mobile apps can be easily adjusted to run on Windows Phone 7, while others will need ground-up rewrites. But that's not necessarily a bad thing, as it doesn't tie developers down. "I just think it's a vast improvement," says Colin Sparrow, a Web developer at Camosun College, in Victoria, British Columbia.
This article, "Don't be fooled: Windows Phone 7, Silverlight are business-ready," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in software development at InfoWorld.com.