Apple led the charge by opening an online App Store in July last year and since that time more than 25,000 applications have been developed, generating over 800 million downloads. Sharing in that success is WaikatoLink – a technology company that is part Waikato University.
The first in New Zealand to become official iPhone developers, WaikatoLink has launched five applications, the most popular of which is The Red Baron with 10,000 downloads a week. Using the iPhone accelerometer, it simulates the sound of a World War I biplane complete with machine guns and bombs.
Meanwhile, other manufacturers such as Nokia, Blackberry and Microsoft are launching their own online software stores so users can download applications created specifically for their devices.
And now global telecommunications giant Vodafone says it too intends to launch an online store to sell games, news and other applications for use on any model of phone connected to the Vodafone network.
Developers who create applications will receive 70% of the revenue. Vodafone group chief executive Vittorio Colao says the online store will provide developers with access to millions of customers, who will be billed via their telephone account.
“By giving (the developers) simple access to our global customer base and network assets, such as direct billing and location awareness, we will help them make more money while providing our customers with the innovative services they want.”
The first online store will be trialled in Europe later in the year, after which it will be rolled out to other markets.