In this edition of Friday Team Talk, MobPartner account manager, Ofir Peretz, takes a close look at the steps Microsoft is taking to tackle its rivals in the mobile marketplace.

Microsoft’s acquisition of the Nokia handset division grabbed our attention when it was announced by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer earlier this month.

Clearly Microsoft is putting considerable effort into bringing life to their operating system and to their app store, aka Microsoft Store.

This acquisition costing $7.2 billion for Nokia’s mobile future is one of many steps that Microsoft has taken recently to affect the mobile market.  For instance, decreasing the fees for developers who create apps for their market from 99$ into 19$ (!) should definitely encourage more developers in to the Windows marketplace.

In addition, the Skype acquisition and many other moves made by Microsoft in the past year, including releasing the Microsoft Surface RT (which is amazing by the way), brings me to the obvious conclusion that Microsoft are not going to stand behind the Google Play market of Android and the App Store of Apple without fighting back.marketplace

To get a better picture of the rivals Microsoft must contend with; let’s start with the fact that in 2013 we have more than 230K iOS developers whilst Google claim to have 150K developers delivering apps to Google Play. Well, I’m not sure how many developers Microsoft has in their ranks, but they claim to have around 45K, which is still not enough to bring many apps into their marketplace worldwide.

Furthermore, if we go into the “money talk”, the current picture is even bleaker (for Microsoft of course).  Based on a report from the FastCompany.com, Microsoft has been outdone in market capital by Apple which reached $222.12 billion (a gain of 1.8%!), whilst Microsoft was down 1% to $219.18 billion. Taking the software market into consideration, Microsoft was the undoubted leader in this market, and let’s not forget Windows OS.windows phone nokia

Whenever I consider switching my device to the one of the latest Windows phones, such as a HTC or Nokia device, I must admit that Microsoft has made a great job of refining the user experience.  Having a fast reaction menu, great design (I’m of the ‘less is more’ school) and working hand in hand with Nokia adapting the design and experience to the phone has created a perfect rival to the iOS and Apple devices (unlike Android with too many brands and devices in the market).

Today, we do not have (yet) a strong market of online campaigns dedicated for Windows phone apps  for the above reasons that currently there are not enough apps and users.  Nonetheless, we surely will see it in the near future, as it’s just a matter of time until users start to think outside of the iPhone box and consider the great alternatives we have in the market today.

I truly think that the solution for Microsoft is not to wait for more users and devices in order to deliver more apps and develop their app store.  Firstly they must work on their store and image to encourage more clients to switch to the windows phone and convert all those who currently are put off by poor market position and a lack of applications.”

About Ofir:

ofirOfir is an account manager at MobPartner who joined the company a couple of months ago bringing more than 5 years’ experience as a global account manager in advertising agencies and marketing management expertise in a variety of sectors including: healthcare, digital and creative. Originally from Israel, Ofir moved to Paris three years ago for professional reasons.

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