Ovi Store launched: where is the content?

Ovi Store launched: where is the content?
Today, Nokia rolled out its much anticipated application store, Ovi Store, which unfortunately was not such a great experience for Nokia customers who faced pretty empty shelves and many bandwidth problems.

According to Nokia the store is available globally to 50 million Nokia device owners. To find applications customers can either browse store.ovi.com from their mobile device or download a mobile client available in English, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish. This mobile application supports operator billing in Australia, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Russia, Singapore, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Globally, credit card billing is supposed to be available through the mobile application and the mobile website. Additional countries, languages, devices and features will be added throughout the year. AT&T plans to make Ovi Store available to its customers in the United States later this year.

Ready for prime time?

It seems Nokia really rushed out this launch. First, most of the day today Nokia’s servers had difficulties to keep up with the demand; in addition, a number of applications were displayed but unavailable. Second, if we look at the content offered on the store today it is poor, very poor. For example only 63 applications and 5 games are available for the Nokia N95, one of Nokia’s best selling high end phones. Third, it seems there was not a single paid application available for sale today which would mean Nokia’s credit card processing system was probably not working at all.

The biggest concern we can raise today is the lack of content available at launch despite the site dedicated to publishers had been open for business since February. It is difficult to understand why so little is online in the Ovi store while thousands of applications spread over the web are available for the N95 (and other Nokia phones) today.

To compete with Apple, RIM and Android, Nokia will have to raise its standards of execution in this area and beef up its content offering pretty quickly.

Tuesday, May 26th 2009

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