The operator-backed Wholesale Application Store has launched commercially, with eight operators and 12,000 apps, but developers will have to wait for the APIs that make the platform unique. From today customers can buy basic Ajax applications from the eight operators that have launched them, namely: Vodafone, AT&T, SMART, …
Why even try..
Hasn't it been shown, several times, that interest in web based AJAX applications for mobile devices is minimal at best? People want native applications that can squeeze in every drop of creativity.
Only in deluded minds of networks would they think it would be possible to create a market for this, and even then managed to make a mess out of it with all these versions no one cares about.
Also if premium text numbers are any indication, the commissions charged on those in-application billings will make the 30% Apple and Google charges seem like a fantastic deal...
Fancy name for overpriced twodotoh webpages. On your mobile.
Somehow this fails to entice me. But then, I'm apparently not the kind of person that'd pay for wasting my time with cow clicker or its more widely known sibling farmville. Perhaps there are millions of people willing and aching to spend their hard-earned disposable income in a system that is, on the face of it, geared to appease the customer (the operator, adept at sending bills) and fleece the consumer (you, and you thought you owned that handset. ha ha).
Of course this is quite clearly a panic reaction on the apple app store. But though apple's take certainly isn't without flaws, it certainly doesn't have that cheap chinese knockoff smell.
Customised interfaces are crap.
But like the article mentions anything that cuts down on anyone else getting the money they will go for it.
Vodafone360 was possibly the worst, although the old T-Mobile stuff killed handset speed...dead.
Why so sluggish?
I am actually quite confident about WAC's viability as a development platform – just look at Google Docs and all they accomplished, without access to the sort of wide-ranging platform optimizations open to mobile vendors – but I'm a bit disappointed in this release. What do you mean no access to local PIM data? Isn't this the kind of support that separates WAC from standard web apps?
Still, it's been quite encouraging to see how WAC's website evolved over the last year, from generic collection of PR utterances into an actually relevant, functional resource, with documentation, SDK downloads and even sample projects. It was also very clever of them to have to have Android support available from day one, even before most WAC-enabled feature phones hit the market. I just hope they have thought about updating first-generation handsets to the upcoming specs – having three incompatible generations spawned in 12 months simply won't do.
So, while there's still plenty of room for disaster, for now WAC keeps steady, if a bit sluggish. Let's wait for the next chapters, then.
Now it's anti-Google?
It just occurred to me – last year, when the WAC was officially launched, it was nominally intended as an alternative to Apple and the iPhone App Store. But now the Androids are the enemy... What a difference an year makes, eh?
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