1. mrzees's Avatar
    Microsoft ranks in the top five (5) companies in terms of Market Capitalisation. Im not certain, but still confident that it ranks in the top one hundred in terms of yearly revenue. Yet even for a company as large as Microsoft, the companys coffers are not deep enough to close the app gap, a corollary of which would be an increased user base and an uptick in smartphone market share. It would be tomfoolery to assume that the number of apps is the root of the problem. The problem is a simple one of money. Microsoft does not have the type of money to throw at every big name company (google included) to entice them to build much needed apps. Had they, then we would not be having this unpleasant problem. Microsoft (a first world technology company) has found itself in the unenviable task of having third world success in its mobile business. Thus it might make economic sense to start looking at their situation from the appropriate point of view (a developing company).

    For the most part, Microsoft has been able to financially bulldoze its way thus far - acquired Nokia and a host of equally strategic purchases and alliances necessary for success in growing mobile space. In so doing, they now have the infrastructure to produce; the human resources necessary innovate; the requisite vision and strategy to market a product that captures customers from the existing smart phone markets, lures others from the feature phone market and more importantly, create a new market of customers that just never existed before windows phone.

    How then does Microsoft remedy the problematique of having a winning product, but no environment with which to ensure growth? The answer is - App development by invitation. App ecosystems and by extension app development is gregarious in nature. That is, it has a snowball effect. The more apps are built, the more people will build. Again, how can Microsoft get developers to build?

    Microsoft needs to woo and fawn developers. This activity should be phased in years. This should include but not limited to:
    1) Phase 0 Phase out and abandon all incentives currently available to app developers.
    2) Phase 1 - Introduce memorandums of intent, that app revenue will be levy free for an incubatory period of X years.
    3) Phase 2 - Offer a generous and progressive taxation period on app developers after the initial X years. (this could be tied to interest rates)
    4) Phase 3 Offer for the first time a competitively aggressive revenue sharing approach to developers.
    5) Phase 4 Reintroduce the any existing incentives that have already been given up until this point.

    As each phase progresses, the previous phase is abandoned. It is my belief that overall net benefit can be had from being aggressive. This model has been tried in developing countries to certain degrees.

    Roadblocks: These are bound to occur.
    a) Opposition will be voiced by shareholders. Direction such as this carries with it cost/benefit analysis that would require the most innovative minds to net a profit in the short run.
    b) Next will be the man or men in charge of convincing the shareholders that this project will work. It will take fortitude and sacrifice on behalf of the managers in charge of Microsoft (C.E.Os.). Their bonuses are tied to profit margins performance goals. As such agency problems may arise. Further work must be aimed at reassuring heads at Microsoft that this is a project that will take time to mature.
    Yazen and mrf430 like this.
    04-07-2015 09:37 PM
  2. mrf430's Avatar
    I couldn't agree with you more!! Very well said!

    I just pre-ordered a Galaxy S6 because not only is there no flagship phone available (to upgrade from a 1520) but even if there was, WP is losing crucial apps and developers quite often and on top of that there are so many mainstream apps that people use on a daily basis that don't exist in the WP marketplace and if they do its in the form of a broken third party version.

    As much as I loved my 920 and 1520, I cant help but feel like WP as a platform is a boat with an ever widening hole in its hull!

    I genuinely hope I'm wrong!!!
    mrzees likes this.
    04-07-2015 11:22 PM
  3. DaveDash's Avatar
    Microsoft care about the top 50 apps, as do most users. And in that regard, Windows Phone is MILES ahead of where it was when I joined.

    Despite all that, they're finally heading in the right direction now. They could never compete with Apple at their own game, and it was a huge mistake of Nokia to think they could. The phones made under Nokia were ugly, the cameras were slow and unusable, they lacked a ton of features, and they were bulky.

    Now however, they're priced very competitively, the cameras finally work and don't take 5 seconds to actually take a photo, the phone design is much more modern, most features are there, most apps are there, and with Windows 10 there might actually be a reason to buy one over the competition (integration across all devices).

    There's no way the platform would go anywhere, with or without apps, without getting these fundamentals right. And its both Nokia and Microsoft making mistakes on the hardware and software fronts respectively that are to blame.

    I've seen more Windows phones now than I ever have, they make sell 50 million this year. They're the best low cost bang for your buck phones on the market, and mom and pop consumers looking for a phone that "just works" have a reason to buy one for themselves or their kids, probably for the first time ever in Windows Phone troubled life span.
    Montpbm likes this.
    04-08-2015 02:37 AM
  4. mrzees's Avatar
    I believe "the lack of apps" is a case of economics. I honestly do not believe that MS has done enough to created the best environment necessary to grow its app catalogue. If they continue with this idea of "Build it and They will come" then we WP users are in for the long haul. Contrary to my OP , I thoroughly enjoy the present app catalogue in the WP store. I religiously use about 8 main apps. The rest are just fluff that I'm sure to uninstall whenever I find my app list becomes to cluttered. I also think its easier for WP users to have way more apps installed that Android or iOS. This has to do with the share ingenuity of the start screen on windows phone.. So yea, MS has lots going for them. They really need to consider destroying as many financial barriers that would prevent app developers. As well as erect every incentive to encourage development. A combination of both will do the trick. I'm saying let developers have a field day in the apps store, let their revenues be 100% theirs less whatever state or gov't tax they have to pay.
    04-08-2015 08:20 PM
  5. fdalbor's Avatar
    How many apps do each of us actually use. I have and use both a Windows phone and a Android phone on seperate phone numbers. While I have probably 50 or more apps on each phone I use frequently only about 15. Both phones have just about the same apps on them and I see little difference between the quality of the apps on one phone or the other. I really enjoy having both OS' s and plan on keeping both. While there may be a perceived app gap I can't help but wonder how much of its actually exists.
    hotphil and Montpbm like this.
    04-09-2015 05:08 AM
  6. Eddie Mendoza's Avatar
    Simple apps like banking (now that chase is gone) can be solved by using apps like Mint - but then you lose certain convenient features like money transfer, deposits etc. Then I have the social media type apps (snapchat?) which is being blocked, and whenever a new game pops up and everyone is jumping on it - we don't normally get it. I've delt with it - and as long as we get a new flagship replacement for my 1520 i'll stay ~ but im starting to almost lose hope! I converted about 10 friends, and about half have gone back in the last 3 months due to them cracking their screens and wanting something new (even though the 1520 still can keep up) oh well. Hope they come through quick ! And I hope windows 10 brings more app developers with the new universal apps!
    Montpbm likes this.
    04-09-2015 07:39 AM
  7. jockopablo's Avatar
    How many apps do each of us actually use. I have and use both a Windows phone and a Android phone on seperate phone numbers. While I have probably 50 or more apps on each phone I use frequently only about 15. Both phones have just about the same apps on them and I see little difference between the quality of the apps on one phone or the other. I really enjoy having both OS' s and plan on keeping both. While there may be a perceived app gap I can't help but wonder how much of its actually exists.
    As others have pointed out before, it usually comes down to one or two key apps missing that really makes the difference. It's not a matter of 500,000 apps available vs 100,000, it's a matter of not having an app for your bank. I don't care about the numbers overall, and like you I don't use a lot of apps (I count 11 apps I've installed on my Windows phone), but it sure would be nice to be able to deposit checks, listen to Amazon Prime music, or listen to baseball games via an MLB app.
    04-09-2015 07:58 AM
  8. Oldmajor's Avatar
    I have to disagree that its a money problem. As documented on this site and others, a bias exist towards windows and Microsoft. Prime examples are Pebble, Snap chat and Google who refuse to make apps. Those are just the few that have blatantly blown off Microsoft. Who knows how many lead programmers there are at institutions like banks who share the bias.

    Money can be made on this platform and its been proven time and again. Companies that care about their business model and profitability tend to have an app on the platform. As an example Groupon and Netflix know they need to be everywhere and anywhere their members could be so they execute that strategy. Even small successes like temple run 2-3 person team migrated to Windows Phone. The bias is real and I don't know how Microsoft fixes it.
    04-10-2015 12:15 PM

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