Is Microsoft Getting Serious About Marketplace?

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Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) may have said it wants to grow the Windows Phone Marketplace in app quality rather than quantity, but the volume is slowly edging up, too. The Marketplace has reached the 70,000-app mark, and the rate of growth can now safely be called rapid, since the figure was 50,000 apps in December and 60,000 in January. That means an average of 300 apps are now being added to the Marketplace daily.

A large slice of the credit is due to the company’s BizSpark program, which calls out to app developers all over the world and provides promising startups with financial backing. Add to it the recent well-publicized Mobile Acceleration Week in New York, where developers from 12 new companies were given training and encouragement to build apps for the Windows Phone platform. App certification times have also been brought down by Microsoft, as it currently takes less than three days to get validation.

And with the Windows Phone having finally been launched in China, maybe the half-million apps mark reached by Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android Market and Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) App Store isn’t in the too-distant future for Microsoft.

To contact the reporter on this story: Aabha Rathee at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com

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