AppFactory is a powerful data-driven build system with a UI front-end. It helps developers build large suites of applications based on any Visual Studio project, including Windows Phone and Windows 8!
AppFactory was created with two main audiences in mind:
- Startups who want to create a new business on Windows Phone or Windows 8.
- Vendors who are successful on other platforms and want to bring their applications to Windows Phone or Windows 8.
AppFactory assists developers by allowing them to start with one or more template projects and transform those projects into suites of applications. These “template” projects could be starter kits, completely custom projects or even be applications ported from other platforms.
AppFactory can be used anytime there's a need to create multiple applications from a single codebase. It's always good to ask, though, if it makes sense to do so. For example, AppFactory could be used to create a unique weather application for each and every zip code in the United States. But those applications wouldn't provide any value over a single application that allows the user to add and remove zip codes they care about. There are times when separate applications are required due to copyright and branding restrictions (for example cable news networks, sports teams or music artists). And sometimes separate applications make sense because of geographic, localization or other scoping needs. These are the scenarios where AppFactory shines.
Anyone who’s solved this problem knows the challenge: Start with a template, add unique logic, unique data and unique artwork, reconfigure services, build the solution, rinse and repeat. The problem has been solved, but it’s usually solved for one project and never shared for others to use. AppFactory was created to do just that.
Getting Started (and Starter Kits)
Need help getting started? We've put a lot of effort into the Documentation
area so that's a good place to start. The Process
page, especially, gives a good overview of how AppFactory works.
If you're looking for templates to get your business started quickly, check out these Starter Kits
for a listing of free and (mostly) complete applications you can build on.
About the author
AppFactory was created by Jared Bienz, a Microsoft employee living in Houston Texas. Jared helps developers build applications for Windows Phone and Windows 8, so if you build something cool with AppFactory please tell us about it.
The AppFactory logo and icon were kindly donated by Jesus Hernandez. Jesus has a passion for software design, graphic design and web development. He can be reached here