The media and fanboys from competing platforms keep harping on about the lack of apps on Windows Phone OS. It has too few apps. It has no future. The lack of apps limit it. Bla bla. Yet, those who are loudest with this tiresome refrain are very often individuals who use and or hype Apple’s Mac OS X to high heavens. Just so you know, here is how the apps numbers compare between Windows Phone OS and Mac OS X:
|Windows Phone OS||Mac OS X|
|300,000 apps||22,000 apps|
|App store created in 2010||App store created in 2010|
Get the picture? Mac OS X isn’t dying off though there is a horrible lack of apps for it. It actually has much less apps than Windows phone OS. As a matter of fact, Mac OS X is growing, albeit slowly. I own a Windows Phone smartphone and can testify that those 300,000 apps are more than adequate for most users. No; the problem of Windows Phone is not the number of apps available for it.
Windows Phone’s problem is…
..Microsoft. Yes; that ecosystem’s real problem is Microsoft, and Adam Z. Lein over at PocketNow captured it well in a well articulated post. Have a look at these these two paragraphs that clearly indict Microsoft:
What’s Apple doing differently though? Well, they’re putting a lot of effort into keeping Mac OS X as part of their ecosystem which has seen much greater success in the iPhone, iPod, and iPad arenas. Mac OS X works great with Apple’s iMessage, Facetime, iCloud, iTunes, iWork, etc. The software and services Apple produces are designed specifically for their ecosystem and only their ecosystem. There’s no Facetime or iMessage for Android. It’s all Apple all the time. Sure that lock-in might suck in some ways, but at least you know that Apple products are designed to work well together.
Microsoft, on the other hand, doesn’t always design its products to work well together and sometimes designs its products to work better with competitor platforms. For a long time Exchange 2013’s Outlook Web Access didn’t work on IE in Windows Phone, but worked great on Android and iPhone. Office Mobile on Windows Phone is feature-wise, pretty pathetic, compared to Office on iOS (or Office Mobile on Windows Mobile 2003).
HERE Maps are now available on other platforms. Other brands are churning out cameras that perform very close to what exists on most Lumia smartphones. Microsoft’s own apps and services used to be a good reason to look to Windows Phone, but that is no longer so. Microsoft’s services and apps are now richer and more comprehensive on other platforms.
There just doesn’t seem to be a compelling reason to use a Windows Phone smartphone any more. The only cogent reason I can come up with why anyone wants a Windows Phone now is the user interface. And perhaps good old fanboyism.
I understand that Microsoft’s new push is for universal availability of their services on all platforms but putting better versions of their apps on other platforms simply makes Windows Phone as a platform less attractive. All Microsoft has to do is make their own services and apps more compelling on Windows Phone than on competing platforms.
Look at BlackBerry. While pushing for cross platform availability of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), they still ensure that the best BBM experience is found on BlackBerry devices.
Please go read Adam’s full treatise, If you think Windows Phone has no apps, you should try a Mac. Comments please.