Android Hits 100K Apps Milestone, 200K Less Than iPhone

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The Google Android Market app count reaches the 100,000 mark, a week after Apple’s iOS topped 300,000 apps

Google’s developer team tweeted that the maligned Android Market of software applications built for its handsets and tablet computers had reached the 100,000 application mark.

That news comes a week after Apple CEO Steve Jobs said the Apple App Store, which offers applications built for the iOS-based iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, had ballooned to 300,000 applications.

Apps Mountain Keeps Growing

Piling on, the Windows phone gadget blog WPCentral announced that the new Windows Phone Marketplace hit 1,000 apps just two weeks after its launch along with the unveiling of forthcoming Windows Phone 7 handsets from UK carriers.

Information Week noted Nokia boasts 16,000 applications, Research in Motion’s Blackberry App World sports 10,000-plus apps, and Palm’s App Catalog sports just shy of 5,000 apps. Using quick arithmetic, that is over 430,000 applications across six mobile app platforms.

The figures show market momentum, little affirmations for those platform developers that the platforms they are writing apps for are worth their efforts. Fewer apps means less momentum and offers less of a reason to write for them.

Android Market’s momentum reaching 100,000 apps after just two years is surprising considering the Market has gained notoriety for high-levels of spam and piracy, not to mention an alleged inadequate payment infrastructure, notwithstanding the forthcoming partnership with PayPal.

However, Android’s freewheeling, open source nature, the bane of Market’s existence where spam and privacy are concerned, also makes it quite compelling for developers to write apps.

In reality, the numbers game for app stores is so much overwrought back-patting and app counting forsakes quantity for quality. Most of those applications are created because developers can build them. Most of the apps are not used because many are not very good. Choice is all well and good but does anyone really need 50 types of Twitter clients?

Unfortunately, the glut won’t end with Apple and Android. HP is launching the Palm Pre 2. Windows Mobile Marketplace will come on strong in 2011, driven by rampant uptick in Windows Phone 7 sales this holiday season.

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