Microsoft WP7 platform gaining some respect?

Dec 21, 2010
Finance

There’s some good news for Microsoft (MSFT) and its Windows Phone 7 platform. IDC reports that that WP7 apps are ramping up at a faster rate than Google’s (GOOG) Android did. Also, Nokia (NOK) reportedly is interested in making WP7 devices. Almost two months after WP7 came out, Windows Marketplace is offering 4,000 apps. It […]

There’s some good news for Microsoft (MSFT) and its Windows Phone 7 platform.

IDC reports that that WP7 apps are ramping up at a faster rate than Google’s (GOOG) Android did. Also, Nokia (NOK) reportedly is interested in making WP7 devices.

Almost two months after WP7 came out, Windows Marketplace is offering 4,000 apps. It took the Android Market five months to reach that level.

Al Hilwa, an analyst with IDC, wrote of Microsoft: “We can say that for a company that just a few months ago was an also-ran in mobile, having 10 smartphones released in 30 countries is not a trivial achievement. I would not be surprised if Microsoft had the third largest app portfolio in the industry by the middle of next year.”

He praised Microsoft’s strong app development tools and strong developer ecosystem. He said Microsoft clearly is in the smartphone game.

Surur blogged at WMPoweruser.com: “Finally a voice of reason. We hope the naysayers are paying attention.”

Chris Ziegler Engadget is skeptical that WP7 would eventually overtake Android: “Bottom line? Both these platforms are going to be successful, but for the Windows Marketplace to overtake the Android Market is going to take nothing short of a miracle — and interpreting IDC’s data any other way would be a reach.”

Achim Berg, Microsoft’s vice president of business and marketing for Windows Phones, disclosed for the first time sales of the WP7 phones by Microsoft. Through the first six weeks, makers have sold 1.5 million phones.

 

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“Sales are ramping well as our reputation is growing for offering users a unique experience and are in line with our expectations – especially when compared to other new platform introductions,” Berg said.

In comparison, Android chief Andy Rubin at Google (GOOG) recently tweeted that 300,000 new Android phones a day are being activated. So in five days that would equal the early WP7 sales.

Meanwhile, rumors are flying about Nokia being in talks with Microsoft to make some WP7 devices, according to the Russian website Mobile Review.

Hilwa told eWeek that competition is “fierce” with Samsung (005930.KS) and LG (LGERF.PK) making gains by being technology agnostic and opportunistic. Likewise, he said Nokia must come to terms with Android and Windows Phone 7.

“I would say that [WP7] has much greater alignment with Nokia’s intellectual property DNA than Android,” Hilwa added. “I believe an alignment between these two vendors is a win-win in the industry.”

Nicholas Kolakowski notes in eWeek that Microsoft and Nokia have a relationship dating to August 2009 when they announced Nokia phones would come preloaded with the mobile version of Microsoft Office. Also, last September, Microsoft Business Division President Stephen Elop became Nokia’s CEO.

 

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