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Kik App to be Released in ‘Next Few Weeks’

April 13, 2011 No Comments

I’ve complained many, many times about the lack of a usable messenger client on Windows Phone 7. It’s nice to finally announce that the official Kik app is set to be released in the next couple of weeks. It’s good to know that I will finally be able to have a real time conversation through IM. It has been frustrating not to have something so basic but hopefully Kik will knock our socks off with an outstanding app.

Kik portion of the Mix11 Press Release:

Kik Interactive and Windows Phone 7

One recent convert to the Windows Phone platform is Kik Interactive — the Ontario-based startup responsible for Kik Messenger.

Kik began by developing for Android, iPhone and Blackberry only. However, when the company stopped developing for Blackberry earlier this year, it decided to take a good, hard look at the Windows Phone 7 platform. It didn’t take long for Kik to see the light.

“Our developers fell in love with it almost immediately,” said Ted Livingston, CEO of Kik Interactive. “We had been doing Android and iPhone for over a year. Within one month, we’d developed our first app for Windows Phone 7.”

Livingston said that Kik’s decision to build for Windows Phone did not come easily. For Kik, and developers in general, building apps and games for a new platform is a major commitment of time and resources.

This, coupled with the fact that Windows Phone had a customer base of zero just months ago, means developers could be less likely to invest the time and energy required to build on a new platform.

Microsoft’s Watson acknowledges the current environment from a developer’s perspective.

“We’re not the first choice for many developers right now — we know that,” Watson said. “But developers have nothing but opportunity in front of them in the mobile space. So we’re doing everything we can to give them the best tools.”

Livingston said that he and his developers at Kik are reluctant to build on any new platform. However, after trying the Windows Phone Developer Tools, and seeing how easy they are to use, it was clear the real risk for his young company would be not to build an app for Windows Phone.

“After using the tool set, and knowing about the partnership between Microsoft and Nokia, it would be crazy for us not to develop for Windows Phone,” Livingston said. “We want to be ready to ride the wave before the wave happens.”

Kik’s new app is just one of the next-generation Windows Phone apps announced today at MIX11. Other new apps and games include Skype, Australia-based airline Qantas, the game “Plants vs. Zombies,” and the augmented reality app Layar. Microsoft also announced that the wildly popular game “Angry Birds” will be available at the Windows Phone Marketplace beginning on May 25, 2011.


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