Silverlight News from MIX10

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With the kickoff of the designer and developer conference MIX10 yesterday, the Silverlight team made several announcements, including the release of a Silverlight Pivot control and the announcement of the Silverlight 4 RC, which is now available for download.

So what’s new with the latest version of Silverlight? Quite a few things, actually – the full list is here if you’re interested (scroll down on that page). However, these are the top items that stood out for me:

  • Webcam and microphone support
  • Multicast streaming
  • Multi-touch support
  • Copy & Paste and Drag & Drop
  • Offline DRM powered by PlayReady technology
  • Control over aspects of the UI
  • Read and write files to your My Documents, My Music, My Pictures, and My Videos folders
  • Ability to run other desktop programs (e.g. Office)
  • Full Visual Studio integration
  • Performance optimizations – starts faster and runs 200% faster than Silverlight 3
  • Silverlight for Windows Phones

As that last item shows, Silverlight will be available on Windows Phones, which will bring the following:

  • High quality video and audio using a wide range of codecs, DRM and IIS Smooth Streaming
  • Deep Zoom for enhanced reading and photo browsing experiences
  • Vector and Bitmap Graphics and animation
  • Hardware acceleration for video and graphics
  • Accelerometer for motion sensing
  • Multi-touch
  • Camera and microphone
  • Location awareness
  • Push notifications
  • Native phone functionality
  • Silverlight can also utilize the XNA Framework to support games using 3D and 2D sprite graphics.

Also new is the Silverlight Pivot control. Pivot, a data visualization technology demonstrated first at PDC, will be available as a Silverlight control by this summer. Silverlight developers interested in using this technology can begin the prototyping process using the Live Labs Pivot app which is available now.

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