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Sorry for the late notice on this one, it’s a bit busy here at BUILD. But Microsoft has finally released the Windows Phone 8 Developer Tools. While t’s unclear why they held back on this for so long, there’s some good news: a $99 Dev Center account is on sale for just $8 for a limited time.

You can find the tools, called the Windows Phone SDK 8.0, at the Windows Phone Dev Center. They include Visual Studio 2012 Express for Windows Phone (though professional developers can also use Visual Studio 2012 Professional, Premium or Ultimate), multiple phone emulators, and various profiling and testing tools. The SDK requires a 64-bit version of Windows 8 Pro or greater with Client Hyper-V.

The SDK release was announced this morning by Kevin Gallo during the BUILD 2012 keynote.

“Windows Phone 8 is the world’s most personal smartphone,” Mr. Gallo wrote in a post to the Windows Phone Developer Blog. “Early industry and customer response has been fantastic, and Windows Phone will be available through 50 of the top mobile operators worldwide starting next month. The expansion of phone hardware options and Windows Phone Store to 191 markets equates to a 90 percent increase in addressable market for your apps in 2012.”

But here’s the best bit: For the next 8 days, individual developers can register for a Dev Center account for just $8, a huge savings over the normal $99 fee. Head on over to the Dev Center and check it out.