India-centric Android AppBazar coming in April

Tuesday, February 8, 2011, 8:11 by Tech Correspondent

If you are an Android fan, we have a good news for you! Pune-based Webonise Lab has revealed its plans to launch an India-centric Android app store called AppBazar in the first week of April 2011.

Webonise Lab will focus on India-specific Android apps, with some apps featuring vernacular/regional languages too. AppBazar will feature apps like Indian game suite, religious applications like Aarti Sangrah, Indian Panchang and an array of apps catering to the Indian palate.

The Indian Android app store will be focusing on tier 1, 2, and 3 cities. In an initiative to encourage and push Indian developers to develop India-specific applications, Webonise has hosted a developer contest.

android photo

Photo: AppBazar will feature apps catering to the Indian palate

The contest is targeted at students, freelancers, platform enthusiasts and Android app development community. The contest was rolled out on Jan. 26 and applications will be accepted till March 26, 2011. Related: Paid Android apps in India

“Our target is the tier 1, 2 and 3 cities. With mobile manufacturers joining hands with Android to woo the common Indian user, there is a huge opportunity for the development of India specific content. We intend to give the users ‘a new mobile experience with an Indian background that too in their own respective languages’,” said Shardul Mohite, CEO, Webonise Lab.

The company has announced the launch of an App store at an appropriate time. Android has outshipped Symbian as the world’s top mobile OS and India is witnessing a flood of Android phones. Hence, the prospects of an App store now in India are very bright.

Saurav Mishra, business head, Webonise Lab, said, “Indians love their flavour. Take a look around. Everything western has been adapted to Indian taste. The world calls it globalisation. We call it Indianisation. Why not Indianise the one thing which our present world is pivoted on – our phones?”

We also see a good level of competition in this area because Android is an open source platform, unlike iOS. Hence, there are many players interested in developing App stores, such as, Amazon. Some Indian telecom operators like Airtel, Aircel, etc., already have their own App stores.

But there remain a few drawbacks too. First is that Android users are not known for their readiness to pay for apps, which may affect a steady/long term revenue stream for AppBazar. Also, due to lack of a strict monitoring process, third party app stores are more likely to get afflicted with malware. So, the success of AppBazar will depend on the amount quality apps/developers it is able to attract.

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