Microsoft may be looking to become relevant in the mobile market with Windows Phone and, later this year, Windows 10, but a lack of apps continues to plague the platform.
As of September, the Windows Phone store offered over 340,000 apps, according to VentureBeat. That's an improvement over the 200,000 it had in 2013, but it’s still tiny compared to Apple and Google’s massive mobile libraries, which clock in at 1.2 and 1.3 million, respectively, according to Statista.
More recently, Microsoft claimed it had 560,000 apps across both Windows and Windows Phone. But a representative declined to differentiate between the two stores, noting that it "is no longer a statistic Microsoft focuses on."
Though the company looks to close that gap by making it easier for Windows developers to create apps that work across all Microsoft devices with Windows 10, there are doubts about the practicality of that, since many of the top apps for Android and iOS were developed as mobile-only services for those platforms.
So before you run out to purchase a Windows Phone, here are seven popular apps that currently do not run on the platform:
If you’re looking for love on Windows Phone, don’t bother swiping right here. Despite the popularity of the IAC/InterActiveCorp matchmaking and dating app, Tinder has yet to find its way onto Windows Phone. While it’s not available officially through the platform, there are a couple of unofficial third-party apps that may fit the bill, namely 6tin and Timber.
Sending self-destructing messages with Snapchat is no problem on Google Android and Apple iOS devices. But Windows Phone users are left out. Though third-party Snapchat alternatives briefly made their way onto the platform in 2014, they were all pulled in December as the service began clamping down on unofficial apps, according to Windows Central.
Outside of its search app, Google has mostly ignored Windows Phone, including its flagship Gmail app. And the company hasn’t been shy about the reason behind it:
“We have no plans to build out Windows apps,” Clay Bavor, Google Apps vice president of product management, told V3 in 2012. “We are very careful about where we invest and will go where the users are, but they are not on Windows Phone or Windows 8.”
Clash of Clans
The popular freemium massively multiplayer online strategy game continues to hold the spot for highest-grossing app in the App Store and Google Play. But for Windows Phone it’s nowhere to be found. That’s not expected to change anytime soon, since Finnish developer Supercell said it had no plans to bring “Clash of Clans” to the mobile platform, during an earnings call last year.
Swedish online streaming platform SoundCloud has developed dedicated apps for both iOS and Android. But like many developers, an official app for Windows is missing from the lineup. As an alternative, SoundCloud provides users with a mobile website version of the service.
Social media network Pinterest briefly made an appearance in the Windows store last year as a beta app in June. But just months after its release, it was quietly pulled from the platform, also leaving its Windows Phone users to rely on the mobile website version of the service.
While there’s a growing number of fitness apps coming onto Windows Phone, Nike’s are entirely missing from the platform, leaving Nike+ users to rely on third-party alternatives to support the line of run-tracking accessories.