Microsoft, Palm, RIM Need Better Mobile Apps to Catch Apple's iPhone
NEWS ANALYSIS: Apple and its App Store for the iPhone is the leader in the mobile space with more apps that are just plain better. Is it possible for its competitors, such as Palm, RIM, Microsoft and Nokia, to catch up?A host of online publications are reporting that Microsoft is planning to launch its Windows Mobile Marketplace this fall. According to published reports, the store will have 600 applications at launch. Microsoft plans to roll out even more applications as its store grows. The applications downloaded from Windows Mobile Marketplace can be installed onto a Windows Mobile smartphone.
Microsoft is excited. The company's Windows Mobile product manager for Microsoft France, Audrey Zolghadar, discussed the Windows Mobile Marketplace in an interview with MobiFrance recently. And although there isn't too much known about it yet, Zolghadar believes the store will provide exactly what Windows Mobile users are looking for.
"For the launch of Marketplace, 600 applications will be certified and available," Zolghadar said. "It will be possible to retrieve the software from the search engine. Only software compatible with the screen resolution, touch or not touch will be visible to the user. Customers can test the software since they will be sold with a satisfaction or your money back offer valid for 24 hours. The customer may choose to pay by credit card will be billed directly or by deduction from the invoice operator (as operators). Microsoft wants to make the smartphone more fun. We offer new games for free. We signed a partnership with EA Games and manufacturers can integrate such mobile Sim City and other surprises."
Having the ability to install applications on a smartphone isn't anything new. Both Palm and RIM offer that now on their own smartphones. And Apple, the leader in the space, started the push for smartphone applications in the first place. At this point, applications have become a requirement. And yet, it seems only Apple really understands that. Granted, the iPhone has a larger installed base, so developers would be more willing to develop applications for the iPhone than any other device, but isn't the number of Microsoft apps just a little too small? Undoubtedly.
And worst of all, it's not alone.