Microsoft is planning to extend its Windows Store service to accept app submissions from developers in 38 markets in an upcoming pre-release version of Windows 8. The expansion will add 33 countries to the existing five markets available to developers for the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, including: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Columbia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Korea, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, and United Kingdom.
In addition to the developer expansion, Microsoft says it will also increase the number of market-specific app catalogs from five to 26. In the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, users in France, Germany, India, Japan, and the United States see specific app catalogs, whereas other countries simply see a "Rest of World" catalog. The expansion, due in the upcoming Windows 8 Release Candidate, could also signal a general push by Microsoft to ensure other Windows 8 apps, like Xbox and Music / Video, are also available in more countries. These particular apps are only available in the United States, Japan, Germany, and France — leaving some Windows 8 testers frustrated by the lack of full app functionality. Microsoft is expected to deliver a Release Candidate version of Windows 8, rumored to be dubbed "Windows 8 Release Preview" in early June.