Windows Marketplace reveals fragmentation

Microsoft is making its Windows Marketplace for Mobile available to phones running older versions of its mobile software, although not all of the apps may be available to all Windows Mobile users.

On Monday, MicrosoftMicrosoft said users of phones running Windows Mobile 6.0 and 6.1 can now shop for and download apps from its Marketplace. The Marketplace was initially only accessible by users of Microsoft's most recent software, Windows Mobile 6.5. Alles zu Microsoft auf

It also said that the store now has 800 apps, triple the number available at the launch of the store in October.

But not all of those are available to everyone. Microsoft’s Web site that lets anyone browse through the Marketplace has just 376 applications.

“People may not see all of them on the Marketplace website or smartphone catalogue, either because of regional access or because certain apps have specific device requirements such as GPS, screen sizes, etc.,” Todd Brix, senior director of mobile services and platform product management for Microsoft, said in an e-mailed statement.

The discrepancy between the total number of apps and the number of apps in the online store demonstrates the downside to a business model like Microsoft’s, with an OS that can be used on different kinds of phones. The model allows end-users the luxury of choosing the phone design they prefer, but it comes with limitations in interoperability. However, GoogleGoogle’s AndroidAndroid operating system is also running on phones with different form factors. The Android Market has 12,000 apps and so far doesn’t seem to have significant issues with application interoperability. Alles zu Android auf Alles zu Google auf

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