updated 07:50 am EST, Fri December 11, 2009
Nokia plans Ovi Store revamp next year
Nokia's Ovi Store for mobile apps has been trounced by Apple's App Store, the former's media group product lead George Linardos admitted on Thursday. Created as rival to the iPhone's portal, Ovi is now acknowledged as having been 'outpaced' by the App Store as its tendency to crash, its slow speed and its lack of features to match Apple's have left it behind. The executive noted that the current Ovi incarnation was primarily meant to integrate Nokia's disparate services and wasn't ready for the iPhone's approach.
"The world changed radically around us," Linardos told the Financial Times.
Many of those problems, however, are being targeted with a major revamp of the Ovi Store planned for the spring. The interface should make it easier to find new apps and will include a Genius-like system that recommends apps based on what friends have downloaded. It's also due to catch up and implement in-app payments, which have been present on iPhone apps since June.
The upgrade will be timed with multiple important changes to Nokia's strategy. It will finally see a major update to the interface of its phones when Symbian^3 arrives in the first half of next year and brings multi-touch. Also, the Finnish firm plans to halve its smartphone line and avoid a chronic weakness in its approach to releases, which has often involved releasing multiple phones in a given category that are only slightly different from each other.