Nokia, Xyo team on Windows Phone app finder
Nokia (NYSE:NOK) unveiled App #Switch, a new service designed to help new Lumia smartphone owners find Windows Phone-optimized versions of their favorite iOS and Android applications.
Built in partnership with app search engine Xyo, the App #Switch mobile and desktop sites require users to select the operating system powering their previous smartphone (iOS or Android) and their country of origin, then enter the name of their favorite application. App #Switch then steers consumers to the Windows Phone version of that app or recommends something similar, complete with QR codes to simplify the download process.
Nokia will promote App #Switch across multiple channels including its retail stores, and will pre-bookmark the site on selected Lumia devices. Xyo also will serve as the international app search partner behind Welcome Home, Nokia's Windows Phone application designed to help Lumia owners transfer content and information from the desktop to their mobile device.
There are more than 115,000 apps and games in Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone Store--conversely, there are more than 700,000 iOS apps in Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) App Store, and another 700,000 Android apps in the rival Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Play. While the relative scarcity of Windows Phone apps is often cited as a culprit behind the platform's failure to attract a sizable customer base, the App #Switch site states that Windows Phone Store now offers 46 of the top 50 apps for both iOS and Android, potentially easing the transition for consumers who switch to the Microsoft OS.
The App #Switch launch follows a month after Microsoft updated its Windows Phone Store with complementary app search and discovery tools highlighted by Picks for You, which offers suggestions based on a user's app download history as well as apps installed by Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) friends. Microsoft also rolled out Collections, which bundles six or more apps organized around a common theme and curated by Windows Phone Store staffers, as well as improved store lists that rank apps according to download frequency, user ratings and other metrics.
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