Microsoft announced yesterday that just more than 100,000 apps have been now been published in the Windows Phone Marketplace. In comparison, Apple had over 725,000 apps in the App Store as of February (meaning its even higher now) and Google Play had more than 500,000 apps as of last month.
As we have argued before, the real network effect in the mobile platform wars is with developers, who create the apps that draw consumers to phones. On the one hand, Microsoft badly trails its rivals. On the other, it’s impressive that they have managed to convince developers to write 100,000 apps with such a small user base—at last mark, Windows Phone had less than 2% global market share, putting it in last place among major smartphone platforms. But while Microsoft lacks the “long tail” apps of these other platforms, at least it has been whipping out its check book to underwrite development of the most popular apps.
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