Windows Phone 7 Apps at Warp Speed


Baaahh... Performance and optimization is boring. What's fun about that?

Having an app that performs well is not fun, it's pure joy. Every app we write is a part of us. Our blood, sweat and tears go into even the simplest app. When those app's leave the nest and go into the real world we want them to be all they can all.

No lazing on the couch, drinking grape soda and moving like old pond water... We want them to be a fast, mean, lean machine! (Sorry, watched Stripes a little too much recently)

Especially if we can take some simple steps, make some simple changes to dramatically improve performance. Maybe use a component from a toolkit to improve our app's performance. Or maybe...

Two articles hosted on CodeProject ("Friend of Channel 9") Performance of Windows Phone 7 Applications and Windows Phone 7 Animations — Alternatives, Performance

"Silverlight and a mobile device — the combination that would be considered impossible not so long ago. The reason is simple — Silverlight with all its flexibility demands high computational power.

So how does the reality look like after the WP7 devices are in use for a couple of months?

We'll be talking about the performance. Ok, but what does it mean — performance?

Most users — when they see nothing changed for 2 seconds — assume something is broken and act correspondingly. You have two options how to handle this situation:

  • Making your app acting faster, i.e. improve the real performance.
  • Making your app appear faster, i.e. improve the perceived performance.

In fact, positive perceived performance is one of the central requirements when submitting apps to the WP7 market place. The app should never appear irresponsive, you need to entertain the user during lengthy computation, show some action, animations etc.

In the following we'll be talking about various ways how to improve the performance. Then we'll try to demonstrate these general points on concrete examples.


What caught my eye where the numbers of how different tweaks improved the performance.
First page snap

Second Page Snap

These articles, and others like them, "teach us to fish," they help us build applications that work, or appear to work, at warp speed...

The Discussion

  • User profile image

    You seem to be on a roll Greg writing all the interesting posts for Coding4Fun! Great job!

    What about making performant XNA games? Any architectural desitions, considerations , patterns we should use?

  • User profile image

    Thanks! Smiley

    I'll keep my eyes open for some good articles for XNA performance guides, suggestions, etc.

    One I hear allot is to carefully watch, think about and manage garbage collection. A GC at the wrong time, with too much being collected in the middle of a 30 FPS game can be a game killer...

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