Everyone has heard the age-old complaint about Windows Phone: “I like the OS, but it doesn’t have all the apps I need.” That problem is slowly starting to disappear. In the last couple weeks alone we’ve seen Facebook Beta, Tumblr, Pandora, Hulu Plus, YouTube, Camera360, and others all come to Windows Phone.
It seems like the “app gap” is closing, but without some cold hard stats to back it up all we have is speculation. We have compiled a list of the top 20 free and top 20 paid apps from the Apple App Store* and Google Play** in order to answer some questions. First up is the app store that started this whole app craze to begin with.
As you can see Windows Phone doesn’t have many of the top iOS apps. Besides a couple apps like Vine, Instagram, and Snapchat most of the top 40 apps are games. The App Store is constantly fluctuating with hot new games, and that makes it hard for other platforms to keep up. A game like Iron Man 3 leaps into the top 20 almost as quickly as it drops out. The window for getting these hot apps is very small.
This is where Windows Phone really struggles. There are three prime examples of this: Words With Friends, Draw Something, and Temple Run. Windows Phone got Words With Friends and Draw Something almost three years after their initial release. Temple Run was released almost two years after it arrived on iOS. Let’s see if Windows Phone fares better against Google Play.
That’s much better. The Google Play top apps is made up of a lot more “practical” services instead of games. This makes it much easier for Windows Phone to compete because the same apps are consistently in the top. Apps like Pandora, Netflix, and Twitter will probably always be popular, unlike a game based on a new movie.
The window for getting these apps is much bigger. Windows Phone just got Pandora last month, but it was still a very relevant and important app to have. In other words, the Google Play store moves a lot slower than the App Store. It’s easier for Windows Phone to keep up.
Windows Phone has:
- 35% of the top 80 paid and free apps from iOS and Android.
- 50% of the top 40 paid and free Android apps.
- 20% of the top 40 paid and free iOS apps.
Including the yellow apps Windows Phone has:
- 45% of the top 80 paid and free apps from iOS and Android.
Windows Phone is a lot better off than it used to be. Except for apps like Instagram and Vine, Windows Phone basically has all the “practical” apps it needs. Games fluctuate so much that Windows Phone often gets left out unless a big developer like Rovio is behind the scenes. The pecking order for developers is still iOS>Android>Windows Phone. In the last few months alone we’ve seen the gap get smaller, and that should only continue.
Do you think Windows Phone will ever completely fill in the “app gap?”