Windows Phone 7 Auto-App Update Feature: Welcome to the 21st Century!

Like some other long time Windows CE/Windows Mobile device users, I’m not exactly thrilled by the idea that Windows Phone 7 apps are only available through Microsoft’s Windows Phone Marketplace. That said, I’m happy to see that app update notifications are automatic and that updating apps is simple to do.

A number appears in the Marketplace icon on the Windows Phone 7 home screen (assuming you leave it there) when app updates are available. You can see that 4 app updates were available when I snapped a photo of the screen segment shown here.

Tapping the Marketplace icon takes you directly to the app updates page when updates are available. You can see the three that were available when I took the second photo. Three apps were updates during this particular update period. A single screen button tap begins the process all the available updates.

Despite my reservations of the closed Windows Phone Marketplace, I am happy to see modern processes like automatic app updates are part of the tradeoff between app installation freedom and ease of use.