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Widgets and the Apps Dilemma for Smartphones, Netbooks, Media Tablets, and Connected Mobile Devices

Mon, 06/07/2010 - 8:26am
The mobile application market is about to change radically, from suppliers' standpoint and from the consumer access standpoint due to the emergence of widgets, the most compelling of mobile cloud applications. Much has been made of the mobile app phenomenon popularized by Apple’s iconic iPhone.

Forecasts involving mobile app stores, app downloads and revenues have been consistently optimistic, with no end in site to the growth of mobile apps. Yet under the sunny surface a different story is taking shape - a story that features discontent and frustration by large and small app developers and a growing number of consumers alike.

Mobile apps as we know them today are really the domain of smartphone users. The rest of the mobile subscriber world has generally had to stand by and watch, since their phones are not powerful or fast enough to handle mobile apps. App developers are becoming increasingly frustrated with the limited reach and growing cost of launching and maintaining mobile apps.

Smartphone apps are typically custom built for particular smartphone platforms in advanced programming languages, limiting the available pool of developers and driving up costs. Increasingly, the answer to these problems is coming from the cloud in the form of widgets. Widgets will exponentially expand the market for mobile applications, introducing complex, rich user experiences to a new and much larger mobile consumer audience.

This report examines the drivers and barriers to the growth of markets for mobile widgets, the type of devices, geographic regions and distribution channels which will favor them, key players within the mobile widget ecosystem, and the business models employed. Forecasts include mobile widget downloads and revenue by region and device type (smartphone, feature phone, connected mobile devices, etc.)

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