Microsoft’s Windows Phone more than doubled the size of its app catalog in 2012, adding more than 75,000 new apps and games from third-party developers, according to a Microsoft blog post published overnight.

Todd Brix of Microsoft writes in the post, “We literally set a new foundation this year with the deployment of all-new infrastructure – new client platform, new developer toolset, new Dev Center, new catalog infrastructure, and all-new global service. I know transitions can be frustrating, but it is now complete and customers and developers are already beginning to reap the benefits with a better app and store experience, faster performance and more robust tools.”

Even at 150,000 apps, Microsoft’s mobile platform has a long way to go to catch up to the likes of Apple iOS and Google Android, each of which has more than 700,000 apps in its store. But the larger number at least increases the likelihood that Windows Phone will have the apps that users want or need, which is what really matters in the end.

We’ve seen this play out in the discussion over my colleague Taylor Soper’s quest for a new smartphone. I suggested that Taylor consider an HTC 8X Windows Phone, vs. an Android or iPhone, but journalist Kelly Clay cited a lack of “critical apps” that she uses on a daily basis as the reason that she’s unable to rely on solely on a Windows Phone for now. (For what it’s worth, Pandora is coming to Windows Phone in 2013.)

That underscores the fact that the quality of an app catalog really depends on your own personal preferences and needs. But doubling the overall size of the catalog over the course of a year is a nice little milestone.

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  • Mike Christensen

    This article inspired me to write a blog post of my own about Windows Phone 8. Thought I’d share:

    • Todd Bishop

      Very good post, Mike. Thanks for sharing it.

    • Guest

      Great post Mike. Totally agree with the issues, especially – no innovative apps show up on WP first, and when they do show up on WP the quality of the app pales in comparison to iOS. Also agree with you on solutions, especially – create a fund for mobile start-ups.

    • guest

      Excellent post. The sad thing about MS is that through failure after failure there’s never been a shortage of good external advice. But the company suffers from NIH, denial, and refuses to learn from past mistakes.

  • ash

    most of the apps in android are useless !!!

    • guest

      Perhaps. But they have the unit volume and the platform momentum. MS has neither. Which is why they need to do something out of the box.

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