Windows Phone 7 after two months; impressive sales and Marketplace apps

Summary:Microsoft revealed some sales figures today, but you should also look at the significant growth in the Marketplace to see that Windows Phone 7 shows some real promise in the smartphone market.

While I was on my flight to Alaska, Mary Jo beat me to the punch with the news that more than 1.5 million Windows Phone 7 devices have been sold by the manufacturers since the launch in late October (Europe) and early November (U.S.). While these numbers do not show the total bought by consumers, it still is pretty impressive and much more than what some have predicted. Device sales isn't the whole story with Windows Phone 7 though as we also see a huge growth in applications with over 4,000 apps now available in the Windows Phone Marketplace.

Device sales

I think it is pretty impressive that over 1.5 million phones have been sold by manufacturers given that there are two carriers with only four phones that were available at launch in the US and five more phones on multiple carriers outside the US. I would be interested in seeing the breakdown between the US and non-US figures as well. In the US, we have three phones on AT&T and AT&T is the carrier that is focused on iPhone sales. It must take some major advertising and education for people to go into a store and buy a Windows Phone 7 device instead of an iPhone 4. I have seen a ton of LG WP7 commercials on TV so maybe good advertising is working.

T-Mobile only has a single device, the HTC HD7 (see my hands-on look), available in stores and with nearly the same form factor as the failed HTC HD2 Windows Mobile 6.5 device it seems like people are pretty hesitant to try this device out. Dell has had some major issues with the Venue Pro and it is just this week arriving in people's hands after some ordering snafus. You can check out the Pocketnow.com and PhoneArena.com reviews to see this may actually be one of the best Windows Phone 7 devices and people haven't even had a chance to use it much yet.

We know there will be Sprint and Verizon Windows Phone 7 devices launching in early 2011 and hopefully we see more cool devices announced at CES in a couple of weeks.

Windows Phone Marketplace

As you can see on the Bing visual search page there is something like 3,000 apps for the US market with a reported 4,000+ available worldwide. The iPhone had 0 apps for a year before Apple decided to roll out support for 3rd party applications. The App Store opened on 11 July 2008 with 500 apps. After two months there were 3,000 apps, which is just about where we are with Windows Phone 7 at the moment. Apple hit the 15,000 app mark at six months.

The Android Market launched with the release of Android devices in late 2008 and after a couple of months there were 800 free apps. It wasn't until 17 February 2009 that priced apps were available. Data I found showed that there were 2,300 total apps in the Android Market after six months. Here we are at nearly two months with Windows Phone 7 and we are already at the 4,000 apps level with many of these much higher quality than what we saw in the early Android Market. Games on Windows Phone 7 are all still much better than what we have for Android and games are the hottest selling application category.

So, in regards to the number of apps, Windows Phone 7 is showing they are very competitive to Apple and Google so far. There are also a reported 18,000 developers working on apps for Windows Phone Marketplace.

Thoughts on Windows Phone 7

I have been showing off my HTC HD7 to a lot of folks and I haven't met a single one that was not impressed with the responsiveness and fluid user interface. I have a few people at work who are waiting for CDMA versions to launch and I haven't heard of too many people giving up on Windows Phone 7 once they try it. My T-Mobile SIM flip flops between the HD7 and Nokia N8, with most of its time spent in the HD7. It is not perfect and there is definitely room for improvement, but the top notch email experience, full Exchange support, enjoyable gaming, and fun user interface keep me using it as my daily device.

I think we can all acknowledge that Windows Phone 7 is no KIN.

Topics: Mobility, Apps, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software, Windows

About

Matthew Miller started using a mobile devices in 1997 and has been writing news, reviews, and opinion pieces ever since. He is a co-host with GigaOM's Kevin Tofel on the MobileTechRoundup podcast and an author of three Wiley Companion series books. Matthew started using mobile devices with a US Robotics Pilot 1000 and has owned over 200 d... Full Bio

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