Today Microsoft announced that the Windows Store is now open for general app submissions, removing the barrier to entry that had previously been in place. Developers from 120 countries can now submit their work.

The move should provide sufficient time for developers of all stripes, should they so wish, to build their applications and push them live before Windows 8 reaches the market.

Windows 8 itself is set to become generally available on October 26th. For some time different classes of developers and enterprise customers have been seeded the RTM build of Windows 8. Today’s move is a step towards the full maturity of the next Windows platform.

Today Microsoft added a total of 82 new markets to the Widows Store. Microsoft, in its post announcing the news, highlighted what it called “fantastic interest from individual developers, large development houses and component and service providers,” in building for the Windows 8 platform.

Recently, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer made a promise that in a year’s time, roughly, there would be 400 million Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 devices in the market. That number, if reached, would result in the creation of a new device install base that would represent a fresh app marketplace of mammoth proportion. And give how quickly the number of Windows 8 devices will go from a handful in the hands of developers, to being the de facto new operating system for the average consumer, we may see a gold rush of sorts as the Windows Store grows up over night.

Want to know if your country is one of the 120 supported? Hit this link to take a scan.

Top Image Credit:  BUILDWindows