News by Dan Seifert on Friday March 23, 2012.
|Sponsored links, if any, appear in green.|
Yesterday, Rovio launched Angry Birds Space, the latest incarnation of its popular gaming franchise, to a variety of platforms. However, Windows Phone was not among the platforms to get the game. Based on what a Rovio executive has said, Windows Phone may never see Angry Birds Space.
Speaking to Bloomberg, Rovio head honcho Peter Vesterbacka said that despite the fact that earlier versions of Angry Birds are the most popular apps in the Windows Phone Marketplace, the cost of developing and maintaining new editions for the platform is just not worth the effort involved. "We're the No. 1 app in the Windows Phone app store, but it's a big undertaking to support it, and you have to completely rewrite the application," said Vesterbacka. He continued to add that the company has no plans to launch Angry Birds Space on Windows Phone.
This week, we learned that Windows Phone now has 70,000 apps in its Marketplace, which is still a far cry from the hundreds of thousands available to iOS and Android users. Microsoft has had quite a struggle with getting developers to port their apps from the other platforms to Windows Phone, despite offering incentives to them. Losing support of Rovio, which is arguably the biggest mobile game developer on the planet, is just another black eye for a platform that is still trying to get traction with users.
It's by no means a death knell for the platform to lose Angry Birds Space, but the situation could offer some insight as to why developers are not bringing their apps to Windows Phone in droves. If a large developer house like Rovio does not find it worth the effort to put its massively popular game on the platform, what would cause an independent developer with a much smaller team to consider it?
Fortunately, not all developers feel the same way as Rovio. 6Wunderkinder, maker of the popular to-do manager Wunderlist, just released a version of the app for Windows Phone this week. Other big names, like Amazon, Audible, and Netflix, already support the platform or plan to in the near future. However, the likelihood that we see the next independent app sensation that explodes onto the public's radar (à la Instagram or Draw Something) come from the Windows Phone platform is pretty slight.
Dan is MobileBurn.com's Editor-in-Chief. Based in Poughkeepsie in New York, Dan can be found on Twitter as @DCSeifert.