"Earlier today, we were contacted by Brandon Watson, Director of Developer Experience for Windows Phone 7, to discuss the ChevronWP7 unlocking tool...we established a mutual understanding of our intent to enable homebrew opportunities and to open the Windows Phone 7 platform for broader access to developers and users...To pursue these goals with Microsoft's support, [he] has agreed to engage in futher discussions with us about officially facilitating homebrew development on WP7. To fast-track discussions, we are discontinuing the unlocking tool effective immediately."
Just days after being posted, the ChevronWP7 tool that allows sideloading of apps onto WP7 devices has been pulled - that's the bad news. The good news is that Microsoft, notwithstanding yesterday's statement, is willing to support homebrew efforts. Now the situation looks like the best of both worlds - the open free-for-all that characterised Windows Mobile development, and the locked down, officially supported marketplace approach of Apple. This is closer to what Google is doing with Android, with the crucial difference of having some official sanction; of course with the understanding that if you want to hack your device, anything bad that happens is on your head. I'm happy with this, especially since as of this moment there's no official marketplace access available in Malaysia, and sideloading is the only way to get anything on board.