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  1.    #1  

    Tam Hanna has taken the time to go over Handango's "Yardstick 2007" report (not my favorite company, but that's a different rant) which shows how the industry is changing in terms of platforms (PalmOS, WM Standard, WM Pro, Sybmian, BB) and category of applications e.g. games, productivity, etc.

    With the added touch of some simple Excel graphs, Tam finds some very interesting results. For instance, in the number of new applications added for WM Professional, it actually dipped in 2007 compared to 2006--which is quite the surprise. However, WM Standard actually increased, suggesting non-touchscreen devices, which have become more prevalent and cheaper, are quickly growing and balancing out Standard's big bro's position.

    Some other interesting findings:

    - PPC-6700 & 700wx are the top PPC devices adding software
    - Moto Q and Sammy BJ are the top Standard ones
    - Average application price has dropped in 2007
    - SPB has 7 out of 10 of the best selling PPC apps

    But probably the biggest shock is how Windows Mobile (while increasing for Standard by a bit and decreasing for Professional) is being eclipsed by Symbian and BlackBerry who are rapidly growing. Yikes. Go over and take a look at all the perty numbers and graphs and drop a comment below on your thoughts.

    Personally, I think the explosive growth of the WM freeware and home-coder community has taking some market from the professional developer community, things like PointUI, WeatherPanel, multiple free IM clients and all the happenings at XDA has resulted in what looks to me as an explosion in high quality free apps. Agree?

  2. zorm42's Avatar
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    Don't forget all of the innovations HTC is putting on its new devices, and XDA stripping them out to put on other handsets.
  3. #3  
    Good point! So pseudo-software pirating of OEM apps probably has an effect as well...
  4. #4  
    I think there's another couple of factors to consider.

    The first factor I thought of was 'need'. In other words, "The included applications on my device aren't sufficient, so I need to purchase one or more applications to suit my needs". For example, I bet that even if it were possible, few people would buy a web browser application for the iPhone, but those of us on just about any other platform will flock to the latest and greatest for sale in the market.

    Another factor I thought of was maturity in the market for the platform. While I'm one of many who have been disappointed that Palm OS has been out there in pretty much the same form forever, it's probably a good reason why the Treo 650 is the most common device that applications are purchased for. Further, I think (no, I didn't actually check) that there's a wider variety of WM phones than there are Palm phones, so in the per-device comparisons each WM phone probably makes up a smaller piece of the pie.

    The last factor I thought of may be related to the first factor I listed... I noticed that WM seems to be at the bottom of the barrel for Productivity applications, yet Productivity applications are one of the most popular categories of applications. Maybe the development community hasn't concentrated on productivity apps like they have for other platforms, or perhaps the productivity apps included are good enough (the first factor I listed), or perhaps we can find good enough freeware ones (one of Mal's theories).

    Certainly, as I'm saving up some dough to move from a Treo 650 to either a Mogul or the rumored upcoming Treo 800w (pick me! ), I've considered what applications I'll absolutely need. Sure enough, the list isn't very long, firstly because I don't think I'll need all the utilities that I felt I needed for a 650, and secondly 'cause I can't spend like money's no object.
  5. #5  
    Interesting stuff snowbound...

    One could hypothesize that Symbian and/or BB devices tend to lack more intergrated productivity applications, media, etc. than default WM devices. I'm not sure how to quantify such a proposition, but it may have an effect as well.

    Then again, as far as Symbian, we just have to look at those numbers:
    • 77.3 million Symbian smartphones shipped to consumers worldwide in 2007, up 50% from 2006

    So lots of growth, but it seems disproportionate to Symbian/BB who are just taking off--of course Symbian is huge in Euro-land and virtually non-existent here in the States.
  6. #6  

    Now that you mention Symbian's presence outside of the US, it would've also been interesting to see the splits across regions of the world. There might be other interesting regional effects to check out.
    Who's flying this thing?

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