Those folks who’ve managed to acquire Windows Phone 7 devices outside of the 17 or so launch countries are still able to enjoy the Marketplace experience, according a tutorial posted over at e’s Phone Blog. All you need are a Zune account registered to an address in the country whose Marketplace you’ll be shopping, and a phone with matching Location setting. Even though a credit card is required to register for the Zune account, apparently you can enter address info that doesn’t correspond to your billing information; what’s more, you’ll even reportedly be able to change your country affiliation when/if a Marketplace opens for your particular area.
Windows Mobile 6.5 users may remember a similar issue at the initial rollout of that Marketplace, when members of the XDA Developers community stepped in with apps such as MarketPlaceRegionSwitch to ensure that everyone had access to the virtual storefront. Luckily for end users it seems that enabling Marketplace functionality is even easier this time around, although it also seems like this is a loophole that Microsoft could shut pretty easily. In other words, get your shopping in while you still can, non-launch country residents.