Microsoft's Windows Phone Marketplace will launch in 23 new markets this month, including China and Saudi Arabia. The software giant is accepting app submissions for the new regions from its 100,000 registered developers in advance of the launch to consumers later this month. Developers can now target Marketplaces in Bahrain, Bulgaria, China, Costa Rica, Croatia, Estonia, Iceland, Iraq, Israel, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Qatar, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Thailand, Turkey, UAE, Ukraine, Venezuela, and Vietnam.
The new regions bring the total number of Windows Phone Marketplace countries up to 63, and expand the focus on emerging markets. Windows Phone developers are currently adding around 300 apps and games to the Marketplace each day, bringing the total to over 70,000. Despite the fairly consistent app certification process, Microsoft is warning that new markets like Bahrain, China, Indonesia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE are all subject to additional certification requirements due to local laws. Microsoft is also expected to launch a number of new handsets in China later this month as part of its Marketplace expansion, where the company will introduce its 256MB of memory Windows Phone "Tango" devices.