Microsoft announced this morning that Silverlight 2 will be available for download tomorrow. So after a long beta period that included big events using Silverlight including the Olympics and the DNC, the bits are going to be out there. The press release includes some impressive numbers:
Silverlight adoption continues to grow rapidly, with penetration in some countries approaching 50 percent and a growing ecosystem that includes more than 150 partners and tens of thousands of applications. During the 17 days of the 2008 Olympics Games in Beijing, NBCOlympics.com, powered by Silverlight, had more than 50 million unique visitors, resulting in 1.3 billion page views, 70 million video streams and 600 million minutes of video watched, increasing the average time on the site (from 3 minutes to 27 minutes) and Silverlight market penetration in the U.S. by more than 30 percent. Broadcasters in France (France Televisions SA), the Netherlands (NOS), Russia (Sportbox.ru) and Italy (RAI) also chose Silverlight to deliver Olympics coverage online.
The 50 percent penetration in some countries is what jumps out at me right away. I'm not sure if that's for Silverlight 1 or the Silverlight 2 beta. I'd assume the latter. But there are a few other very interesting announcements in the press release.
One is that Microsoft is going to be working with Soyatec to bring Silverlight development capabilities to Eclipse, which in theory means that we could finally have Mac and possibly even Linux development tools for Silverlight. According to the press release this will also be free. A technology preview of the tool is available now (I'm downloading as we speak - but the current tool is only available for Windows).
There was supposed to be an event with Scott Guthrie this morning but the dial in doesn't work for me. I'll be watching the recording later and should have more info later today.