Microsoft rumoured to announce Silverlight support for Xbox 360 at MIX11
WP7 devs gain second route to market?
However, WinRumors reports that Microsoft's console may soon gain support for Silverlight, the other tool in WP7's app arsenal.
Mixing it up
According to "persons familiar with the company's plans", Microsoft's MIX11 conference in Las Vegas on April 12-14 will play host to the announcement, with Silverlight 5 support forming part of a fresh wave of developments for Xbox 360.
Silverlight, which is Microsoft's answer to Flash, has been utilised as one of the two main development tools for Windows Phone 7 since it launched in October.
Typically, Silverlight has been best suited to development of standard apps rather than games, but an unnamed source has told site that it may form part of a new app marketplace for Xbox 360.
Such a store would enable WP7 developers to port Silverlight apps to the console and target them at Xbox 360's userbase, which passed the 50 million mark in January.
More in (app) store
Indeed, the expansion of Silverlight could be just the start of a plan to hand WP7 developers greater access to Microsoft's entire consumer base.
Recent leaks have suggested that a brand of Windows 8 is specifically being pitched at tablets, merging Windows Phone 7's Metro UI with a more standard look. Naturally, the ability to sell apps from Windows Phone Marketplace's 11,500-strong library would be a major plus for any tablets running the OS.
WinRumors also claims a new app model codenamed "Jupiter" - designed to enable developers to create apps using Silverlight, deployed as AppX packages (.appx) - will help Microsoft deliver a new Windows app store, pre-installed on Windows 8.
Any app marketplace on Xbox 360 could be the first step in an effort by Microsoft to deliver apps across mobile, console and PC, putting the company in a similar position as Apple with its dual line-up of App Store and Mac App Store.
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