Following its initial announcement of live Ovi technologies at last year's Mobile World Congress, Nokia today announced its Ovi Store which, it says, will fully personalise content for users. It also announced a framework to get developers involved and introduced some big-name tie-ups for the service.
Nokia is certainly talking big for the venture, live in May, which it says it will be "unrivalled in size and opportunity".
More interestingly - and certainly less buzzword-centric - are the possibilities on offer for app developers. Nokia is matching Apple with its 70 per cent revenue share and is opening up its developer site at publish.ovi.com from today. "Building an open ecosystem of developers and consumers lies at the heart of Nokia's vision of transforming the internet into a deeply personalised experience," said the company in a statement. Shame it couldn't have bettered Apple's revenue share offer.
Nokia has big plans for the service, which will carry apps for Series 40 and S60 devices, adding somewhat optimistically, that it will be "brimming with exciting new content by summertime" as a result of its established 3.5 million Forum Nokia developers. The company is predicting a userbase of 300 million consumers by 2012, again an ambitious target in anybody's book.
Estimates for Apple's App Store userbase waver anywhere around the 30-50 million mark at the moment, though as Apple doesn't release figures guessing is somewhat difficult.
At the show, Nokia also announced Ovi Store tie-ups with Fox Mobile to carry content from 20th Century Fox such as Ice Age 3 as well as EA Mobile, Facebook and MySpace. EA's inclusion is especially interesting, as it has buddied up well with Apple since the launch of the App Store.
Nokia will certainly launch the Ovi Store at an interesting time, with the store offerings from BlackBerry yet to edge into the limelight and Android as an OS yet to come properly into the frame. What's interesting about Nokia's launch is that it has tens of millions of Symbian-based devices already out on the streets.
Personalisation central to the experience
The Finnish giant is planning on personalisation as being the Ovi's Store's biggest selling point – and central to the experience. You'll also be able to choose to see content that appealed to your friends and dependent upon location. It's not a new theme though; Apple announced its Genius recommendation tool last year, albeit with patchy results.
Nokia says it believes the media you consume is no longer just about "what" you're buying, but also now about "where," "when," "why," and "who" bought what. The Store will be able to learn what you like and what you don't like, and Nokia hopes that will lead to a more appealing experience.
"By leveraging our strengths as a company and the assets of our partners, the Ovi Store is a 'smart store' that will change the way our consumers discover and consume content on their mobile devices, ultimately making the experience easier, more fun and most importantly, more relevant," said Tero Ojanperä, Head of Nokia Services.
At Mobile World Congress, Nokia also announced business handsets the E75 and E55 as well as mid-range handsets the 6710 Navigator and 6720 classic.
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