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Windows Phone Marketplace hits 30,000 apps

Less than a year old, Microsoft's Windows Phone now offers 30,000 apps in its marketplace, up from less than 12,000 back in March.

Lance Whitney/CNET

Windows Phone has officially reached 30,000 apps in its marketplace, according to a Microsoft blog.

Dropping the news yesterday in the Windows Phone developer blog, Todd Brix, senior director of Windows Phone Marketplace, added that the "nearly 30,000 Windows Phone app and game titles available today will also run on Mango."

The first major upgrade to Windows Phone, Mango was provided to device manufacturers about a month ago. An official release is being eyed for this fall.

Since its debut toward the end of last year, the Windows Phone Marketplace has seen steady growth in the number of apps, reaching 11,500 in March and 25,000 just last month before hitting its latest milestone. Of course, Microsoft's numbers still pale in comparison with Apple's App Store, which has close to 500,000 apps based on certain estimates, and Google's Android Market, which holds around 250,000 apps.

But for an app store less than a year old, 30,000 isn't bad.

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Last December, an IDC analyst forecast that Windows Phone Marketplace could be the third biggest app store this year behind Apple's App Store and the Android Market.

Microsoft may have bested RIM's BlackBerry World, which held around 25,000 apps as of late May, but is likely still behind Nokia's Ovi Store, which had shot up to 40,000 apps as of April. Of course, Nokia's partnership with Microsoft to produce Windows Phone handsets will eventually see a merger between their two respective app stores.

And in its public statements, Microsoft has conveyed less concern about the hard numbers and more about the apps themselves. In a Windows Phone Developer blog published in March, the company's Brandon Watson said that it's more about "quality over quantity" and stressed that the app count doesn't include "lite apps" and doesn't "double and triple count apps which are submitted in multiple languages."