This morning, Microsoft relaunched its online catalog for Windows Phone Marketplace, a move that gives Microsoft's nearly year-old OS a little more life, even as it turns our attention to the spotty state of Windows Phone apps.
Like it or not, the number and quality of apps in a platform's on-device marketplace can just as easily defend an operating system's existence or strike a lasting blow. (Just ask HP, and Palm before it, how the well-received WebOS withered, in part because of its anemic app catalog.)
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Today, the Windows Phone Marketplace has around 30,000 titles, compared with more than 250,000 Android apps and iOS' more than 500,000 speculated programs. It's a paltry comparison, until you consider that in four months, Windows Phone Marketplace ballooned 12,000 apps, up from 18,000 apps last May. Even then, its app count was arguably ahead of RIM's BlackBerry App World.
Already behind In truth, Windows Phone's growth is commendable, at least by the numbers. The platform's debut immediately put Microsoft at a disadvantage. Based on an all-new software backbone, Redmond's new mobile OS wiped the app catalog clean. Programs that worked with Windows Mobile 6.5 and before were instantly part of Microsoft's embarrassing mobile past. Windows Phone 7 was a fresh start.… Read more