Vodafone has announced that they will be enhancing Vodafone’s 360 services with the launch of a 360 Shop for Android. Earlier, 360 environment just showcased the Joint Innovation Lab platform apps. So from coming summer Vodafone’s 360 environment platform will have both Android apps and JIL apps.
For the uninitiated Vodafone’s 360 environment is an attempt to build a cross-platform development community to promote apps and widgets that Vodafone can then have them deployed across a range of mobile platforms and not just the smartphones. Now it is to be seen how successful Vodafone might get with this strategy. But if you look around the stats, Android Market place has about 50,000 apps available while Vodafone’s 360 environment has just 8000+ apps. So if the Android developers also submit their apps to Vodafone’s 360 environment, their apps might get better exposure. Surely, Vodafone won’t leave any stone unturned to promote those apps.
Besides that, Vodafone’s platform also offers pricing visibility, transparent app review process (which Android Market or even Apple’s app store do not provide) sales assists such as user reviews and carrier billing. With carrier billing, users won’t have to pay for the apps from the store using their credit cards but can pay via carrier bill, which is much safer in my opinion. All these amazing features might attract developers.
Vodafone’s 360 Shop on Android will launch this summer on the HTC Wildfire and Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini Pro.