Windows Phone Platform Accounts For 2pc Of App Downloads Says Report

A recent report suggests that Microsoft's Windows Phone platform will only account for two per cent of 2012 mobile applications downloads.

According to a new study by the market research firm, ABI Research, nearly 36 billion apps will be downloaded onto smartphones and tablets this year. Over 83 per cent of that number will be attributed either to iOS or to Android devices.

"Although Windows Phone lags behind RIM's BlackBerry and even Nokia's Symbian, we shouldn't ignore the fact that the two per cent that we forecast for 2012 would be twice the share the platform achieved last year," ABI's Lim Shiyang commented in a statement. "Microsoft is gaining momentum, but its starting point is frustratingly low."

According to ABI Research, there are four factors that are resulting in the slow Window's app growth.

"First, the small device market share the most obvious drag. Second, Windows Marketplace's global roll-out has taken a long time, further limiting the potential number of customers. Third, Microsoft has been slow to enable in-app purchasing, meaning that most of the quality apps remain behind an upfront paywall. And fourth, there have been no tablets built on the platform."

The new Nokia Lumia 900 is expected to drive up more sales for Microsoft, and increase the prominence of the Windows Phone platform. The release of Windows Phone 8, the firm's next major OS release, is also expected to encourage more sales.