Thanks in large part to the success of Apple’s App Store, applications play a critical part in the success of any phone or operating system. Google’s Android now boasts of almost 100k apps and Apple’s App Store has over 200k apps. Consumers want apps, so it’s critical that Microsoft get developers on board with Windows Phone 7. A few developers are taking a wait and see approach. Like webOS, this could be seen as an opportunity for developers who get in early. Not unlike Google’s Android OS, there isn’t just one phone that will run Windows Phone 7. Several manufacturers (HTC, LG, Samsung) and wireless carriers are on board from day 1. This will help the adoption rate. Still, some developers are talking a wait and see approach.
“Coming out of this economy, developers don’t randomly build stuff. We really focus on ‘is there going to be a meaningful addressable market”, said Paul Reddick, CEO of Handmark. Reddick believes the “jury is out” and he’s not alone. Big players like Yahoo have questions about the viability of a new platform.
“Candidly, the question is going to be how much adoption is WinPhone going to have,” said Michael Shim, VP of mobile business development at Yahoo.
We here at eWM have seen no shortage of Windows Phone 7 App previews. It will be interesting to see how many apps are available at launch and how it progresses through the end of 2010. Developers are going to go where there is an install base. If there is a winner among the early WP7 phones, that will go a long way towards getting developers on board.
Are you a developer of Windows Phone 7? Let us know your thoughts. If we haven’t featured your app yet, be sure to post in the Windows Phone 7 Apps forum.