Tag Archives: Apps

[Updated] India: Slew Of Local Apps Hit The Windows Phone Marketplace – Must Have List

With the launch of Nokia’s Lumia devices in India, the Windows Phone ecosystem is just about setting started in India and there is some very good news already. The Windows Phone Marketplace has just hit 50,000 apps, but numbers don’t say much when apps you use daily aren’t available on the platform.

Thankfully, all of that is about to change. A bunch of free locally relevant apps for users in India has just hit the Marketplace and all of them are well designed and must haves.

  • NDTV: The app does what you would expect, news, live tiles, live streams from NDTV 24×7, NDTV India, NDTV Profit and NDTV GoodTimes. Also present are photo galleries, cricket scorecards and market watch sections. You can also choose to live stream just the audio.
  • NDTV Good Times: The app from India’s leading lifestyle channel. Lets you watch latest featured videos on varied topics like food, cuisine, travel, fashion. Also lets you catch up on previous episodes of your favorite shows like Highway on My Plate, Yogasutra, Bollywood Confidential, Chakhle India, Band Baja Barat and many more. Also present are sections on sections on travel, luxury, gadgets, fashion and wellness.
  • Times Of India: I had already demoed this app when it was in development and I’m glad to say its finally available. It brings breaking news and  coverage of national, international, city, sports, entertainment, lifestyle, business, health, science and technology topics. Also present are live cricket scores and a complete scorecard; local news from more than 30 cities; latest movie reviews by critics as well as readers; photo galleries; and top videos from news, business, sports, entertainment and lifestyle categories.
  • Economic Times: The sister app for TOI, the business paper of the Times group.
  • IBN Live: News, streamed content, live tiles, playback of popular shows like Face The Nation, Devil’s Advocate and The Week That Wasn’t.
  • Book My Show: One app I was waiting for, makes looking up movie & cinema listings, synopsis & reviews a breeze. You can also carry out bookings from the phone using secure mobile payments options. Even lets you pick your seat and redeem offers.
  • timesPoynt: A free application powered by data from timescity.com, provides users with the unique ability to search their local area for events, movies, restaurants and nightlife. timesPoynt provides users with the ability to move beyond discovery of their local area to click-to-call businesses, get directions, browse listing websites, send details to a friend or add listings to their calendar or address book. timesPoynt also features a fully integrated weather homescreen and the ability to search for long-term forecasts.
  • yapf: It builds on the Google or Bing POI database to find places nearby by by searching a set of predefined categories or by manual search. Features augmented reality to view your results through your phone camera. You can also pin the search tile to the home screen for quick access, or pin a single place and the live tile will update with the distance to it.
  • India Today: The India Today application allows users to view up-to-date news articles, images, videos and live TV served through the India Today Network. The application is powered by India Today, a popular news magazine.  The app consists of latest & breaking news, sports news, political news, cricket updates, entertainment news, Bollywood & Hollywood news, movie reviews, celebrity interviews, images and videos.
  • Business Today: India Today’s sister app, the Business Today application allows users to view up-to-date news articles, images, videos and Stock updates served through the India Today Network.  The application is powered by Business Today, India’s no. 1 business magazine.  The app consists of business news & articles, stock updates, business analysis  and videos.
  • Snapdeal: India’s Groupon equivalent, the website brings upto 90% discounts on dining, health and beauty services, branded products, travel and more.
  • Flipkart: Fairly basic, but a good start. Flipkart is India’s Amazon when it comes to online retail, includes movies, music, games, mobiles, cameras, computers and electronics.

So there you go, those are 13 excellent Windows Phone apps that are completely free. If we keep getting locally relevant apps at this pace for Windows phone, I dare say we’ll have a credible fight for marketshare come 2012.

The only thing the developers need to guard against is making apps and forgetting them, regular updates are just as important!

Forum Nokia Transitions To Nokia Developer, Gets A Redesign

The Forum Nokia of yesteryear is no more, and in comes Nokia Developer, Nokia’s brand new portal for their developers across the globe. Along with the change in name comes a brand new design that makes getting to what is important to you much quicker and simpler.

From the post announcing the change:

While this website might look a bit different now, we think you will agree we have made it simpler to understand. Whether you plan to develop and deploy mobile apps using Qt, Web or Java – or if you plan to begin crafting apps for Nokia with Windows Phone – you will notice that it is easy for you to reach any of the mobile development-related resources that you need to do your work quickly and efficiently. As you will see, this is part of an overall movement by Nokia to offer our global developer community a single point of service to design, develop and distribute mobile apps and content to consumers using the latest Nokia phones worldwide.

All the old links still work and any forum.nokia.com link is automatically redirected to the appropriate page on developer.nokia.com.

On a side note, I’m still getting used to the new official Nokia font.

Ovi Store Apps In India Are Cheaper By More Than 50 Percent

Operator billing for the Ovi Store was introduced in India for the first time yesterday by a joint announcement made by Nokia and Reliance Mobile. The obvious upside is that if you are a Reliance customer, you can now choose to pay for your app downloads monthly as part of your bill or have the price deducted from your balance if you own a prepaid (PAYG) connection.

Another major upside is the fact that the app prices for India are much cheaper than the prevailing global rates. For example, Gravity in India sells for Rs. 150 which is just over 3$ compared to the 10$ international price, a discount of a little less than 70%.

Ovi Store Apps In India Are Cheaper By Upto 70%

Similarly Angry Birds sells for just Rs. 50, compared to the 3$ global price which translates to about Rs. 136.

Ovi Store Apps In India Are Cheaper By Upto 70%

While the description on the Angry Birds page mentions a 33% sale, most applications and games are cheaper by quite a bit despite there being no sale. Another example is Battery Extender which is priced in India at Rs. 99, again cheaper compared to the global listings.

From a general glance, prices seem to be lower by upto 65-70%, which should serve as quite a motivation to buy more apps. There is however one major problem. The operator billing is exclusive to Reliance till March 31st, which means users on all other networks are left without access to paid apps as they are simply not listed for them, so obviously there is no option to pay by credit card anymore.

Nokia is believed to be working with other operators and credit card companies to iron things out, but there is no word on when things will be back to normal. One reason floating around for this problem is that Nokia cannot have different prices for apps on one operator and the more expensive listing everywhere else. So till then if you really need your app fix, grab a super cheap prepaid Reliance SIM and get downloading. May be that was Reliance’s big !dea anyway!

An Interesting Interview With Ms. Purnima Kochikar, VP Forum Nokia

At ‘The Way We Live Next‘ event I was fortunate to get an opportunity to interview Ms. Purnima Kochikar, Vice President, Forum Nokia and Developer Community, who is responsible for strategy and growth opportunities with Nokia’s third party developers to create a vibrant Nokia ecosystem.

Over the course of 30 minutes we able to cover a number of subjects including:

  • The number of applications on the Ovi Store and Symbian application visibility in general.
  • Why should developers have to pay to get on the Ovi Store, even if they are going to give away their apps for free?
  • The surge in developer interest as far as Maemo goes.
  • The possibility to Nokia opening up the Ovi Store to devices from other manufacturers.

I have trimmed down the video to a little over 13 minutes. Since YouTube only accepts videos under 10 minutes, I have uploaded the interview to Vimeo (embedded below) and Blip.tv.

While editing the video I realised that I should listen more while interviewing someone and not let the lawyer in me get the better of the conversation. Therefore, I would like to especially thank Ms. Kochikar for her time and patience.

PS: Speaking of Forum Nokia – I will be heading to Bangalore to attend the Forum Nokia Developer Conference ’09.