Windows 8 Tile Notification Service

So looking into the metro tile interface in the windows 8 developer preview a few things strike me as interesting design decisions.

So to actually use live tiles in metro you need to register with the tile notification service which is hosted at Microsoft which requires that you log in with your Windows Live ID.

So what wrong with this. Well for a start if you are writing an application that will sit inside a corporate network then you will have to assume that the firewall rules to allow http traffic to and from the specific Microsoft server have been allowed. We all know that Microsoft likes to use odd port numbers for this kind of comms as well, so if you are in a company where the desktops are locked down and ip traffic is a) monitored and b) restricted then you may not have the ability to run the live metro tiles.

The api also does not seem to hint at anyway that the notification service could be hosted inside a corporate network, so no “notification server” Microsoft seem to be saying that all traffic will be routed through there servers …. hence the quotes about the number of unique transactions through windows messenger per day etc …

I short it looks like Microsoft is targeting the home market more, some would say that’s a good thing but it also excluded a large market of people who would like to take advantage of the tile updates etc… but will be unable to because of imposed restrictions which is a little sad.

I can only hope that when the notification service is released that Microsoft realise this shortcoming and release a service to allow us developers to create our own notification server without requiring the windows live Id to authenticate and host the whole thing inside a corporate network.

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