(Photo : Creative Commons/Erik Derr)
Windows 8 needs apps, and Microsoft has the money --- at least for a time.
The Redmond, Wash. Software giant has announced it will pay developers $100 for each Windows 8 and/or Windows Phone 8 app they write, up to a total of 10 apps for each, the "Windows Store" and "Windows Phone Store" online purchasing sites.
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The limited-time promotion runs now until June 30, 2013 and is known as the "Keep the Cash" offer.
Participants must live within the 50 United States and be at least 18, according to fine print at a Microsoft blog site.
In the past, Microsoft paid for the development of Windows Phone apps, but not for Windows 8.
The open call for apps is getting mixed reviews in the tech community, though analysts believe Microsoft sorely needs more Windows Store and Metro-Style apps, since they are the only kinds of apps able to run on Windows RT and Surface RT devices.
Microsoft has lately been ramping up the pace of app-development promotion pace around Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8. Around a week ago, the company posted a free, two-part video aimed squarely at those interested in writing apps for both systems.
With the anticipated release of "Blue" --- the company's effort to promote a routine, yearly upgrade cycle - Microsoft is expected to bring its Windows and Windows Phone development platforms and app models closer together, making it easier for developers to write an app once and then have it run on any version of Windows.
According to ZDNet, "Blue" will include the next Internet Explorer browser, along with significant updates from the Bing team intended to make devices and their associated apps easier to use.
Some market watchers suggest the $100-per-app offer, which really isn't a big amount for a truly good-quality app, is designed more to bring in an overabundance of apps. The company, after all, has been panned repeatedly for the lack of apps it offers via the Windows Store and Windows Phone Store.