Microsoft showcases next-gen SDKs for WP7 and Kinect

Microsoft is showcasing the next version of its Windows Phone SDK at MIX11.

The latest iteration of the mobile platform is expected to offer devs access to additional hardware capabilities, optimized browsing and improved tooling, as well as expanded Windows Phone Marketplace options.

The upcoming Windows Phone toolkit (available in May) will also boast a performance profiler and sensor simulation, allowing devs to code more integrated and high-performing applications.

Other notable features are slated to include:

  • App multitasking for background processing, audio and file transfers.   
  • Deeper phone integration, facilitating app use with Live Tiles.
Access to the camera and motion sensor library, enabling the creation of advanced augmented reality experiences with apps and games.

In addition to detailing the next stage of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft also

revealed a number of features planned for the Kinect Windows Beta SDK due this spring, such as:

  • Robust Skeletal Tracking – For high-performance capabilities that track the skeleton image of one or two persons moving within the Kinect field of view.
Advanced Audio Capabilities – Includes a four-element microphone array with sophisticated acoustic noise and echo cancellation, along with “beam formation” to identify the current sound source and integration with the Windows speech recognition API.
  • XYZ depth camera – For standard color camera stream access and depth data; indicates the distance of objects from the Kinect camera.