Microsoft’s senior director of the Windows Phone Marketplace, Todd Brix, has announced that Microsoft will launch a new web-based Windows Phone Marketplace for Mango phones. Brix explained that customers will be able to read reviews, view screen shots, and even promote applications on social networks. Purchases can be made with any credit card associated with your Windows Live ID, and you can choose to download the applications over-the-air to your phone. We’ve seen similar interfaces before: Google’s http://market.android.com website already allows Android users to install apps over the air, search for new apps, and more. The Windows Phone Marketplace web store is expected to launch in tandem with Mango, which Microsoft has confirmed will happen this fall. More →
Internet company PayPal has announced plans to open an application storefront in an effort to court developer business and further its online payment system. The company’s plan includes an application store and payment system for both mobile and desktop applications. “I want developers to think of PayPal first whenever they hear the word ‘payments’ and I want to know what it will take to get there. We’re willing to do it. We’re willing to innovate and experiment on their behalf and hear their feedback,” said Osama Bedier, PayPal’s vice president of Platform Business Unit and Emerging Technologies, while speaking at the Future of Web Apps conference. Bedier continued: “The wallet should live in the cloud… Entering credit card information into a mobile device is the worst user experience ever.” It will be interesting to see how a mobile application store would play out. We can assume that Apple isn’t going to let PayPal just waltz in on its cash cow — do we feel a PayPal application ban coming from the iTunes App Store? — and Android’s market is already, for the most part, wide open to developers. Nokia has Ovi, BlackBerry has App World, and Microsoft has Windows Marketplace. What are your thoughts? Is PayPal a little too late to the game to make a significant impact? It’s worth noting that RIM’s App World is already exclusively using PayPal for payments. More →
Remember the days when Handago was the place to go if you wanted to find an application for your smartphone and PocketGear was the place you went if you could not find it on Handango? Those days are long gone and today heralds a new beginning for both companies as PocketGear has announced that it is acquiring Handango. The two application distribution platforms will merge to form the world’s largest cross platform application store and the ensuing stats on this newly merged behemoth are impressive:
- over $400 million in mobile application revenues to date
- over 140,000 paid and free titles
- support for Android, Symbian OS, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Palm, Linux, and Java powered mobile devices
- 4 billion consumers in 175 countries worldwide and using over 2,000 unique mobile devices
- 32,000 strong developer network
- distribution deals with 4 of the world’s top 5 handset manufacturers, 4 of the top 5 mobile operators in the US, and 3 of the top 10 mobile operators globally
Competition will be intense as this new application store will be competing directly with the Android Market, Windows Marketplace for Mobile and other smaller manufacturer and carrier-created application stores that will come pre-installed on the customer’s smartphone. Given a choice would you prefer to buy from the potentially smaller platform-specific application store or the larger, cross platform conglomerate? More →
It seems like everybody and their brother’s pet goldfish is jumping on the application store bandwagon these days. Google/Android, RIM, Microsoft, Samsung, Nokia and even Cydia have all announced online application stores for various mobile platforms. Acer may now be added to this ever-growing list as the company is reportedly considering adding an application store to its upcoming Windows Mobile handsets. Whether this comes to fruition remains to be seen as Acer is only at the “discussion” stage, trying to determine whether such an effort will be a viable asset to its phones. Regardless of Acer’s decision, Apple’s success with the App Store has propelled the on-device application marketplace light years forward and we can certainly count on more such announcements from a variety of sources in the near future.
Its been a busy week for the Android Development team. On Thursday, it released the early details of its Android Market and positions itself as being the place for “open” application distribution. In explaining their unusual name choice, the Android Development team writes on their blog, “We chose the term “market” rather than “store” because we feel that developers should have an open and unobstructed environment to make their content available.” Hope our friends in Cupertino heard that one. To publish content in the Android Market, developers will only need to register as a merchant, upload and describe their content, and then publish it. Android users will then be able to find and install any uploaded content from their Android device. Love it or Hate it? Android users will be able to rate the content in a feedback system similar to Youtube. A beta version of the Market will ship on the first Android handsets and will, at a minimum, include support for free content. Sounds simple simply wonderful doesn’t it? Hit the jump for the winners!
If the cards align as they’re supposed to, it looks like T-Mobile may be launching an application store of their own sometime soon. Reportedly set to service their entire line of handsets, from the lowliest of low to the, well, moderately adequate smartphones, T-Mobile’s application store would be accessible directly from your mobile device. Moconews is reporting that the company is set to implement a revenue sharing model similar to Apple’s current App Store agreement, hoping to entice 3rd party developers to jump on board. No word on exactly when this will launch, but it should be this Fall sometime, so stay tuned for more info as it surfaces.