Microsoft Offers Cash Incentives To App Developers

Microsoft is trying to narrow the app gap.

As we’ve all heard, the Windows Phone 7 is in development and Microsoft is pouring their souls into the project.  Recently the major corporation nixed the (not very popular) Kin phone and rolled its development team into the Phone 7 group, hoping to boost production and surpass the competition out there (Google and Apple mainly).

Now I’m seeing reports that Microsoft has taken the next step in their attempts at smartphone take over- they’re now gunning after the competition’s developers.  Microsoft is offering cash incentives to make apps for the Phone 7 so they can catch up, mainly to Apple who leads the pack with 225,000 app in their marketplace (Google only has 60,000).

“We are investing a lot to attract developers big and small to Windows Phone 7 to let them understand what the opportunity is and provide as many resources as we can to help them be successful on our platform,” said Todd Brix, a senior director at Microsoft who works with app developers. “We’re open for business and we want to work with them.”

As of right now, Microsoft only has 1155 apps in the Windows Mobile Marketplace.  If they can’t build a strong app base, people other than die-hard Windows fans will be less interested in the phone itself.  Most smartphones’ hardware is similar to one another, leaving the apps to make or break the deal.  Since they’re so late in the game, I’m not sure they’ll ever be able to complete on a level playing field with their competitors.