Orange launches new app initiative

In an effort to get more developers to build apps for their app store – yes they have an app store – Orange are trying to make the development and approval process more streamlined, and they’re offering a 70/30 split, at last..

Orange’s new Orange Partner Connect, is designed as a “one-stop shop” for developers to submit apps to the Orange country-specific app stores. The apps will be sold on a 70/30 split in favour of the developers – at the initial launch last year there was no mention of the splits so that’s another advance – and the aim is to get the first apps out of Connect and into the stores by January 2011.

Orange says that Partner Connect will let developers submit apps to stores once, accessing customers across its footprint, which extends across Europe and into Africa. Confusingly, elsewhere on the Partner site, Orange says that the only Orange app stores currently in operation are in the UK and France.

Initially Connect will only support Android-based apps, but the plan is to extend that also to BlackBerry and Java.

Orange launched their app store in December 2009 with around 5,000 apps and only supporting Nokia 6700 and a couple of Sony Ericsson handsets, then in March of this year they announced a plan to link the store with Netvibes, with the potential to add a further 200,000 widgets from Netvibes catalogue.

If we had to guess at their chances of succeeding with Orange Partner Connect, or anything else associated with the app store, we’d have to say their chances of succeeding are minimal to zero. Orange should stick to what they’re good at, which is ………… films on Wednesdays and marketing…….sorry, we can’t think of anything else.

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