Windows Phone Marketplace hits 1000 apps

Windows Phone 7 may have 1000 apps out of the gate, but so far, few are relevant to business tasks

Windows Phone 7's commercials make it very clear that it's not about the phone's applications but about freeing a user from being obsessed with his or her smartphone. Now that the Windows Phone Marketplace has hit the milestone of 1000 applications, has Windows Phone changed its tune? Unfortunately for Microsoft, it hasn't, just as other smartphones are gaining traction.

Windows Phone 7 is likely one of the most business-friendly smartphones, allowing users to sync documents between phone and PC with a paid SharePoint account, and to integrate with Microsoft's ubiquitous Office software, but it's now fighting off Apple, Android phones, and RIM for business customers.

One could argue that with only 1000 apps, Windows Phone 7 is a bit app-light, and it's unknown if it will stay that way. A look at a few of the recent applications are no-brainers such as a calculator, weather, and social networking apps (including the official Twitter app), as well as apps for streaming video and a large amount of games from Xbox LIVE.

While Microsoft was luring developers with cash incentives to show customers its app diversity, the current apps are heavy on games. Microsoft has also brought in eBay, Netflix, EA, and Slacker, but a relatively empty app store could be the demise of Windows Phone 7.

Not only is the platform not attracting consumers, but it's also not attracting developers. Despite Microsoft reporting 300,000 downloads of app beta tools for developers in August, that translated into significantly less than 1000 today.

Some developers blame the Microsoft coding, others say they can't use an overlay such as with Android apps, while still others are waiting to see how successful Windows Phone 7 will be. It's likely that some developers l don't want to see their blood, sweat and tears go the way of Microsoft's Kin.

However, among the most needed things are enterprise apps. Previously there were reports that the Windows Marketplace would put more effort in this area, including offering companies the capability to create in-house apps, but so far there's been little talk or action on this.

Companies do need a secure place online where employees can browse and download company software -- from something as mundane as a calendar to an electronic timecard system. Microsoft's Windows Phone Marketplace should be able to enable this.

Microsoft needs to produce and approve business apps that will strengthen its relationship with business owners and employees. Microsoft may have to be more aggressive in recruiting developers to give company owners what they expect from a great office product -- something stable and secure that will increase productivity.

While Microsoft has created a more business-like smartphone, it still needs to work on growing third-party apps in the Marketplace that companies need. The trick is that most companies are basing their smartphone needs on what executives lobby for and less on what an IT department may suggest. And those execs are not going to like a business-oriented smartphone with an almost-empty app store

Reach or follow Barbara E. Hernandez on Twitter: @bhern.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Microsoftwindows phone 7Phonesconsumer electronicsCell Phones

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Barbara E. Hernandez

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?