Microsoft's Build 2012 developer conference sells out in an hour

Microsoft's Build 2012 developer conference sells out in an hour

Summary: Microsoft has not posted an agenda, yet version 2.0 of its cross-platform developer conference, with a heavy focus on Windows 8, has sold out.


At 8 am PT on 8/8, Microsoft opened registration for its second Build developer conference.


An hour later, those attempting to sign up were getting a "We're full. Keep calm and join the wait list" message.

There is no published agenda for Build 2012, just as there was not a public agenda provided in advance for the first Build conference, held in September 2011.

According to the Build 2012 site, in addition to discussing Windows 8, Microsoft engineers who will be on hand at the event also will be sharing information about Windows Phone 8, Windows Azure, Xbox (I'm assuming about the fall dashboard update and not about the next Xbox console), Office 365, Bing, Visual Studio 2012 and Internet Explorer.

But Windows 8 is expected to be the star of the Build 2012 show. The Build 2012 site mentions that a big focus of the show will be on "How to design and build beautiful Windows 8 apps. How to sell your apps in the Windows 8 Store and make money."

There are about 450 Windows 8 apps (meaning those apps formerly called Metro-Style apps, which write to the WinRT API) in the Windows Store at present.

Microsoft officials said earlier this year that Microsoft would be replacing its Mix show with a new developer conference to be held in 2012. A couple of weeks ago, officials said the second Build would be held on the Microsoft campus in Redmond, Wash., from October 30 to November 2.

I don't know what "capacity" is for this event (I've asked; no word back so far). I also do not know if Microsoft is planning to webcast keynotes and some sessions and record all others for public consumption as it did last year. (I've also asked and no word back.)

Update: It sounds like there is a plan to make Build 2012 content, though I'm not sure how much of it, available online. A spokesperson sent me the following statement from General Manager of Developer and Platform Evangelism, Tim O’Brien: "For those unable to attend, there will be a world class online experience and local developer events throughout the world. "

The timing of Build 2012 -- the week after Windows 8 is generally available and Surface RT devices are expected to be in Microsoft's stores -- makes me wonder what new Windows 8 tidbits we'll hear there. Windows Phone 8 is expected, according to my sources, to have RTM'd a month earlier (September 2012), if Microsoft stays its current course.


Topics: Windows, Microsoft, Software Development


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Also ask if they'll be giving attendees free WP8's and WindowsRT surfaces

    I expect they will. I hope it turns out that everything is webcast for all those who can't attend in person.
    Johnny Vegas
    • If they won't comment on the agenda

      I seriously doubt they'll comment on any swag :) Many are expecting Surface RT devices to be the giveaway... I have no idea what paying attendees will get (but I'd expect something, given how lavish Google was with its giveaways this year). MJ
      Mary Jo Foley
  • Well.

    So much for the disinterest in Windows 8.
    • Not an indicator.

      If there are as many attendees as in 2011 (about 5000, correct me if I'm wrong) that's, frankly, quite nothing compared to the number of (maybe disappointed) Windows developers & IT pros around the world.
    • Re: So Much For The Uninterest in Windows 8

      That lack of interest was among customers. Developers (especially established ones) are usually the last to notice a shift in the winds among their customers, until they suddenly discover that their latest and greatest product isn't selling.
      • Strike that... reverse it!

        That's about as backwards an analysis as I've heard in awhile. Developers are usually the first to catch the winds of change. It's the managers who more often want things to stay the same. Who ever heard of a company failing because the developers wouldn't change despite management ordering them to?
        • Developers?

          Which ones? The companies, the outsourced who care less, the desperate chained to a desk/keyboard slaves? Which?
        • Re: Developers are usually the first to catch the winds of change

          Just look around you to see how wrong you are. Apple's Iphone platform still has more apps, and more developers working on apps, than Google's Android. Yet the customers are flocking to Android 4:1 over Iphone. And this is forcing the developers, however reluctantly, to start developing for Android.

          Developers follow the money. And the money comes from the users. Users lead, developers follow.
  • If there's a conference...

    with free food, of course it'll be a sell out. So was the Vista developers conference. Bureaucrats love free conferences, it makes them look like they are working...
    Tony Burzio
    • Not free

      Build is not free. The early bird tickets are $1,595 a piece. The full price is $2095.
      • Nothing's For Free

        Given that pricing, I think it'd be cheaper to follow it online and purchase a Surface on your own than paying about $2000. ;)
  • This was by design

    Not to be cynical, but I think they kept it small on purpose to assure that it would sell out. They could have had it in LA and opened it up to 5000 people and maybe it wouldn't have sold out so fast. But I don't think they mind the buzz of the sellout.

    Here is the other question: The conference says it is going to help you "design and build beautiful Window 8 apps." Well, desktop apps are Windows 8 apps, too, aren't they? Or is Microsoft now using the term "Windows 8 app" to describe only Metro apps? Because I can assure you that there will be precious little discussion of desktop applications at this conference.
    • To assure that it would sell out?

      I doubt there was any concearn that it wouldn't sell out, even if it was larger.

      As for desktop apps, people have been buildning them for years, so I would have to believe that developers have a handle on those, so no need to focus on that too heavilly.
      William Farrel
      • Desktop dev platform needs work

        I'm one of those people who have been building them for years, and I'm here to tell you that the desktop app dev platform needs work. WPF has major holes that they don't seem to be fixing and may not be fixable (retained-mode only graphics, airspace issue that was supposed to be fixed in 4.5 but they canceled it). MFC is older than the Internet. Meanwhile, Metro app developers get a platform allowing the combination of Xaml with native code. We've been asking for that on the desktop for years. I'd like to know if we're going to get it or if we're stuck with the mishmash of unsatisfactory tools that we have today.
        • Well you can always pay 2 grand to find out

          • Fortunately, posting wise-ass remarks is still free!

          • Thank God!

          • No, Thank Microsoft

            They are the reason for your existence on this site. Only thing you do here is trash MS.
    • Not sure I agree...

      The Microsoft campus is quite large on its own, and there are several places they could hold such a venue with a sizable crowd. You're right that we don't know the actual size yet, and I'm certain that it was designed to sell out in order to generate buzz, HOWEVER, even a few thousand developers signing up so quickly is quite a bit of interest for a platform that tech journalists are picking on so harshly.
      • I don't mean to suggest . . .

        . . . that there is not interest in the platform. I'm *very* interested in the platform and would have liked to have gone to the conference, but, alas, I was too slow. Why not go to LA where lots more people could attend? Maybe it's a cost thing, and since content will be available on the web, it's less important to be there, but I really wanted to talk to people about the languishing desktop development situation.