Wholesale Applications Community Want To Challenge App Store Hegemony

Some of the biggest names in mobile telephony will come together to take on the growing threat that Apple constitute with its ecosystem that includes the iPhone, iTunes and the App store.

Under the banner of Wholesale Applications Community, the likes of Vodafone, Orange, O2, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and LG have banded together to come up with an alternative in the booming mobile applications market.

In all, 24 network operators and a number of mobile players with a combined user base of three billion will attempt to create a cross-platform architecture so that will make it easier for developers and customers to code and sell apps "irrespective of device or technology".

Interestingly, the Vodafone-led Joint Innovation Lab as well as the GSM Association have also lent their support to the venture to create an "open international applications platform".

Apple has managed to grow a formidable environment in a couple of years with the App store having almost 150,000 applications and more than three billion downloads to date.

Furthermore, iTunes itself has managed to clocked almost 10 billion downloads since it was launched, clearly showing that there is a massive market for such a service.

It will take a lot of ego-swallowing and concessions from all the parties involved in order to come up with a compelling alternative to the App store. In the meantime though, Apple road towards world domination will continue unabated.

Our Comments

Will they succeed? Certainly not. Most of them have vested interests elsewhere as many of them have their own closed, proprietary version of the App store. WAC will only serve to fragment the market even more, just like Bada, Android, Limo and other operating systems are doing for the mobile market.

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