Nokia to boost Ovi store by paying advertisers

With the iPhone and Android platforms battling for dominance within the app store segment, Nokia has quietly agreed to pay advertisers to create branded apps for the Ovi store.

While a number of app developers have confirmed Nokia's intent to reward their efforts, the company has yet to reveal the number of apps currently available for Nokia handsets. A spokesman would only confirm that 'tens of thousands' of apps were available, putting the company considerably behind the Apple App Store with around 300,000, and the 100,000 available for Android-based phones.

John Bernard, head of global marketing for rival platform Ubuntu, said that Ovi was failing to attract interest because of the relatively low number of apps available on Nokia smartphones. "Manufacturers such as HTC have taken UK market share ahead of the established number one, Nokia, (due to) their ability to offer this," he added.

Bernard also believed that Nokia continued to lose out with mobile operators because enthusiastic app users added 'incremental income to the operator, a value proposition to a handset manufacturer and income for a developer'.

Regardless of this, a report published by Open First claims that over 80 per cent of app developers prefer Apple's platform. Also, nearly 70 per cent of developers for the Ovi platform said they were disappointed by revenues being lower than anticipated, blaming the Ovi Store for making it difficult for users to find apps and Nokia for not promoting the concept sufficiently.

On the positive side, the number of developers satisfied with Nokia's support rose from 37 per cent to 48 per cent over the last six months.

But if Nokia is struggling to make headway, the 2,000 apps available from Microsoft's Windows Marketplace for Mobile looks very poor.

For more:

- see this Marketing Magazine article

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