Developers still won't be getting paid right away, but Microsoft's improved the Marketplace payout situation a little bit for developers who've been technically
earning money with paid Windows Phone 7
apps for several weeks now. Originally slated for February
, Redmond now expects to start cutting checks in the fourth week of January, which will include money earned between October and December; thereafter, payments will occur on a monthly basis, which is how these things should typically go. Microsoft's got a reputation for treating devs like royalty; holding their hard-earned cash for several months after the launch of Windows Phone 7 isn't a great way to demonstrate that, but if it's any consolation, these seems like a one-time delay while they get all the necessary systems in place.