Furthering Windows Azure commitment to open source development, Microsoft announced http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/home/scenarios/mobile-services/ that developers can begin using Windows Azure Mobile Services to develop native Android applications. Mobile Services makes it easy for developers to add a scalable backend powered by Windows Azure to light up their Android phone and tablet apps. The SDK for Android development, which is now available on GitHub, was developed by Microsoft Open Technologies with the Windows Azure team building the portal integration and push notification support.

These services streamline the development process by enabling developers to use the cloud for backend functions like structured data storage and user authentication via Microsoft account, Facebook, Twitter, and Google. Whether you are a developer building an app for the Windows Store, iPhone, iPad, or Android and want an easy backend connection for storage, identity and push notifications, Windows Azure Mobile Services provides the right capabilities developers need.

Developers will benefit from the Windows Azure Mobile Services update in the following ways:

  • Rapid Development: configure a straightforward and secure backend in less than five minutes.
  • Create modern apps with the following built-in support:
    • Email services through partnership with SendGrid
    • SMS & voice services through partnership with Twilio
    • Access to Structured Storage, Windows Azure Blob, Table, Queues, and ServiceBus
    • Integrated Authentication so developers can configure user authentication via Microsoft Account, Facebook, Twitter, and Google.
    • Push Notifications for Windows Store, Windows Phone, iOS, and Android apps

What are you waiting for?

Visit WindowsAzure.com, access the current libraries up on GitHub, access the Android Quick Start project in the Windows Azure portal, and find tutorials in the Mobile Services dev center.
Windows Azure Mobile Services are still free for your first ten applications running on shared instances.