Microsoft has canceled the Developer Ambassadors team for Windows Phone (a part of the DVLUP program), consisting of a group of experts who have helped numerous app developers create amazing apps and games for Microsoft's mobile platform. Microsoft did not disclose a specific reason as to why the team was cut.
The Developer Ambassador program will no longer be active at the end of this month. According to Microsoft, this decision was not "made lightly." The members of this team will continue to be active in some way within the Windows Phone community.
DVLUP, for those that did not know, has one simple goal -- to make developers successful. DVLUP has various app challenges, hosts a plethora of events, and features a leaderboard to encourage development and foster a vibrant community.
"DVLUP uses a gamification model to create a fun, inventive and competitive environment for developers to build successful Windows Phone applications. Developers can earn badges and experience points (known as “XP”) by completing quizzes and challenges related to application development. By creating high-quality applications, developers can also earn additional points and unlock even greater opportunities. For instance, developers can promote their applications through the Windows Phone Store, App Social, in-app advertising, as well as by using print, digital, social and out-of-home media opportunities," the DVLUP description states.
Unfortunately, the Developer Ambassador program will no longer be a part of DVLUP. "To say I was humbled by the Ambassadors' passion for Windows Phone and their commitment to sharing their expertise with developers would be a huge understatement," said Brad Spikes, US head of breadth developer marketing at Microsoft. "The entire developer community has benefited from their knowledge, and I’ll always be thankful for their countless contributions."
You can read the full email below.
Over the past two years, the Developer Ambassadors have personally helped countless Windows Phone app developers create amazing new apps and games, and they have given their time and expertise to answer questions every day – both in-person at events and online.
They’ve hosted, sponsored and attended events throughout North America, giving developers – both newbies and experts alike – access to new ideas and information that help make all of us better app builders.
“To say I was humbled by the Ambassadors’ passion for Windows Phone and their commitment to sharing their expertise with developers would be a huge understatement,” said Brad Spikes, US head of breadth developer marketing at Microsoft. “The entire developer community has benefitted from their knowledge, and I’ll always be thankful for their countless contributions.”
As indie developer Robert Oschler told us: “The Developer Ambassador program is directly responsible for my becoming a Windows Phone developer. Their energy and passion drove me to learn more about Windows Phone than any other equivalent development environment I've ever tackled.”
So, it is with a heavy heart that we must inform you that the Developer Ambassador program will be coming to an end at the end of this month. This decision was not made lightly, and we know we will miss the support, guidance and camaraderie that they provided to Windows Phone app developers here in North America.
Happily, we can report to you that most – if not all – of these Ambassadors will continue to be active in the Windows Phone developer community.
“Being part of the Developer Ambassador team has been like joining an exclusive brotherhood,” said Nick Landry. “I know that we will stay involved with the Windows Phone developer community.”
All of these guys continue to be passionate about the Windows Phone platform, and the developers who support it with their hard work and innovation every day. We expect that they will continue to impress us with their own ideas and inspiration, and we plan to remain in touch with them for years to come.
We hope you will join us in wishing the Ambassadors a hearty “Thank You” for a job well done. They would love to hear from you about your experience with Windows Phone, and what they did to help you in your own work. Share your thoughts and well wishes with them on Twitter.