While the Android and iOS app stores have over 500,000 apps, the Windows Phone Marketplace only has about 100,000. And while it might not just be a numbers game, the hottest new apps arrive for the iPhone and Android before they do for Windows Phone (see Pinterest, Instagram, Draw Something, etc.)
But Elop says that since Nokia partnered with Microsoft, thousands of apps have been added to the store. He also said that the app growth will surge as Windows 8 becomes available for laptops, desktops, and tablets. (More app developers will be able to write apps for both platforms.) Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said the same at the launch event for the phones: "The next app developer to make it big will be on Windows."
Elop said he remains very confident in his decision to use Windows Phone rather than Android and also hinted at Nokia's plans to bring out a Windows 8 tablet.
"The most important reason we did not go with Android is because we wanted to be different. We needed differentiation," he said. "You can look at all of the different Android devices out there, all of the textured backs, a bunch of black and gray cases. That's all fine. Nokia needs to stand for something different. "
Turning it Around
The Lumia 820 and 920 are different and beautifully designed, that's for sure. But whether they will be able to get Nokia back to where it was years ago depends really on the public whether they will buy the phones. Nokia isn't announcing the price of the phones today or what carriers will sell them; they will be available in the U.S. before the end of the year though. The Lumia 900, however, was sold at a very aggressive $99.
And with the anticipation of Apple's iPhone 5 event and projections that Apple will sell over 10 million in just the first few weeks, it's apparent that it's increasingly hard to drag people away from what they know and have been happy with.
But Elop hasn't given up the hope.
"Within Nokia we talk a lot about a particular attitude, and that is the challenger mindset," he said. "We're still a very large company with a very large position in many markets around the world, and yet we have to operate like challengers and fight our way back every step of the way, and that's what we're doing. Today is an important step in that journey."