Online Application Stores: Fad or a Necessity?
Apple did it with a good measure and great success for their online application store, which has generated interest both in consumer and developer communities. After the Apple App Store began reporting monumental numbers, however, there was a significant shift; suddenly, those responsible with making the handsets tick wanted to be the ones vending the wares. Google launched its application store for Android in August 2008. http://www.mobilecrunch.com/2009/02/04/not-every-company-needs-an-app-store/ RIM BlackBerry will now be launching its application store, Blackberry Applications, in March 2009. http://www.cbc.ca/technology/story/2008/10/21/tech-rim.html . Not wishing to stay away from the party, Nokia has also announced the launch of its application store, Nokia Applications! http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/02/08/nokia-shaping-up-to-launch-its-very-own-app-store/ Nokia Applications is not a new thing alltogether but a “old wine new bottle” phenomenon. Nokia has owned developer communities in Nokia forums and the Zook – Nokia Search tie up is a resultant of developer – Nokia partnership! Nokia would only look to refurnish the Nokia Forum and re brand it as Nokia Apps! Palm is also debuting its application store Apps Catalogue with Pre, its new OS! And so is Samsung with its mobile applications marketplace! http://applications.samsungmobile.com/en/gbp/index.html. The developers are going to have a party! The only biggie missing from this party is Microsoft, who presently are more engaged in release of Windows 7! With all these race to finish application stores debuting one after the other, it feels that a application store is suddenly a trend now! It is fashionable to own a application store. So it would seem. In the future, other vendors could also open up their application stores! The rationale for these stores is to provide the consumers of their higher end services more applications to experience their products better. With Apple it seemed to create the loyalty glue in terms of the Apple’s music stores! There is money to be made from the application stores business model! However, it is important from the vendors perspective, if you are starting an application outlet, you need to be at the reins of the platform as well. Without having your own platform, your work can be copied on the same platform for other vendors. There is no differentiating factor left! Suddenly you will have many venddors peddling the same content and messing up the market place, segmenting it and creating rapid commoditization! Thus it makes sense for vendors like Apple, Nokia, Google, Microsoft, Palm and RIM to launch their online apps stores. Samsung however would not have any huge justification on building a apps store on what is a Nokia property!