Thursday, October 25, 2012

Windows Store For Windows 8 Has Over 7,000 Apps And Why That Doesn't Matter

According to researcher Wes Miller, the Research VP at the third party analyst company Directions on Microsoft, the number of Windows 8 apps published in the Windows Store has topped 7,800 worldwide. Yet that hasn't stopped many detractors from claiming there are not enough apps for Windows 8 available to download from the Windows Store.

The truth is that Microsoft has been very busy publishing a lot of apps in the store on the eve of the Windows 8 launch on Friday. The exact total that Wes Miller published was 7,873 marking an increase of over 2,000 apps compared to a week ago and represents the biggest growth spurt yet for the number of apps in the storefront. The growth spurt is undoubtedly due to the upcoming press conference and full blown release of the new operating system, making it even more likely that Microsoft will reveal even more Windows 8 apps at its press event.

So why then has Microsoft been taking so much flack for not having enough apps to compete with the iPad?

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Let's step back a minute and look at what we are talking about here: Many sites that claim there are not enough applications for the Microsoft Surface are mistakenly talking about the Windows RT version and not talking about full blown Windows 8 Pro based Microsoft Surface tablets. In this instance they are correct. At this point in time there are very few Windows RT apps.

Second we are talking about 7800+ apps that are design specifically for Windows 8 and specifically for the new touch interface. This number sounds miniscule when we are talking about 100's of thousands of apps now in the Apple App Store or in Google Play. What many of Microsoft detractors are forgetting (along with some of my fellow tech bloggers and mainstream journalists) is that the Windows 8 based devices run a full blown version of Windows. One that is capable of running almost any Windows 7 (likely even Windows XP) based application.

So now we have to add to that 7800+ apps that are design specifically for Windows 8 to all of the applications currently on the market that are Windows compatible. I can't even guess at a number for that, what hundreds of thousands? millions?

People are always going to find something to bash MS about. The simple fact is they are entering the market with something totally different than has been done before. When Apple hit the market with the iPad and iOS and Google hit the market with Android they had to reinvent the wheel when it pertains to their applications. For Microsoft its all about getting the key apps that people are going to want the most and working their way up.

To add a side note: With Windows 8 you can run Android apps through emulation with something like Bluestacks or the BlueStacks powered AMD AppZone Player. You won't get full compatibility with all the apps in Google Play but AMD promises with the AppZone player that you get at least some limited access to the 500,000 mobile Android based apps available today. Can you do that with your iPad??

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