Brix: Windows Phone Store doubled in size during 2012; average Windows Phone user has 54 apps
54 apps downloaded on his or her phone and customers should feel safe knowing that every game is tested for malware and viruses. And if Windows Phone users have a concern about an app, they can communicate that concern to Microsoft. The Redmond based tech giant has also made paying for app purchases easier as the Windows Phone Store now accepts PayPal and AliPay. The number of carriers offering billing for app purchases has doubled. Additionally, thanks to Bing search and smartlists, finding the right app is easier. With Live Apps allowing you to pin certain apps to your Live Tiles, more customization is available for Windows Phone users.
What did 2012 bring to developers? How about a large number of APIs that can be shared between Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 apps. But you can offer all of the APIs in the universe and unless you make your store available throughout the world, developers aren't getting the most bang for their buck. It just so happens that the number of markets supporting Windows Phone Store surged from 35 at the beginning of this year to the 191 markets that currently supports the Windows Phone Store, giving developers more locations with access to their apps, resulting in more sales.
in-app payments accepted in 2012, the Windows Phone Store now gives developers the chance to make those hugely profitable premium sales and allows them to offer free trials during which they can try to upsell the customer. The aforementioned increase in carrier billing is huge. Brix notes that 75% of Windows Phone users with access to it prefer to be billed for an app on the monthly invoice from their carrier instead of getting billed on a credit card. Twice the number of paid-downloads were made using carrier billing than when using a credit card.
Yes, the Windows Phone Store trails both the App Store and Google Play Store, with the former now at 1 million apps. While Android managed to catch the App Store despite the large head start that Apple had, the momentum that Android picked up following the launch of the Motorola DROID awakened developers to the idea that they could make a lot of money writing apps for Google's open source OS. Until the Windows Phone platform has a phone like the OG DROID that can kickstart the entire platform, there is a slim chance that the App Store or the Google Play Store will ever be caught by the Windows Phone Store.