New research shows that developers are losing interest in writing apps for Windows Phone 7. Combined with a separate report showing that consumer interest is waning as well, it appears that Microsoft's phone platform is losing steam.
A joint survey between IDC and appcelerator about developer interest in smartphone platforms has bad news for Windows Phone 7. Only 29% of developers say they are very interested in writing apps for the platform --- a drop of 7% from a quarter ago. That 29% is just barely above the percentage of developers who said the would be very interested back in September, before Windows Phone 7 was released.
This research comes at the same time that a Nielsen survey found that between January to March 2011, only 6% of consumers planning on buying a smartphone said they would buy a Windows Phone 7 device, down from 7% for the July to September 2010 time period.
In other words, consumers and developers, after seeing Windows Phone 7 launched, are saying, "No thank you."
The developer problem is particularly acute, because increasingly, apps seem to sell phones. If Windows Phone 7 doesn't generate developer interest, it will remain an app-starved platform --- and consumers won't buy.
There was one small bright spot in the developer survey --- developers said that the Microsoft partnership with Nokia was the announcement that could make the most impact for companies to successfully compete against Google and Apple.
Still, despite that announcement, developers are losing interest. So the Nokia deal alone won't save Windows Phone 7 --- Microsoft is going to have to get developers on-board as well, or consumers will likely continue to stay away.