Microsoft has enabled app downloads for Windows Phone 7 on Zune Marketplace in India, according to Windows Phone Sauce. With this, Windows Phone 7 users will be able to search for, buy and download apps using Zune Marketplace. Users will be able to pay in Indian currency and download paid apps as well. Till now, the Zune software was only a medium to deliver software updates to phones based on the platform. We wonder why the company launched high-end devices in India, without enabling its app store in the first place, since apps are the biggest differentiator when it comes to smart phones, but then it did take Android a while to do the same. Nokia has only just enabled telecom operator billing.
A Microsoft spokesperson informed MediaNama that the Windows Phone Marketplace for Apps will be launched shortly in India, but did not mention a specific date. We’re awaiting a response to a few more questions from Microsoft, and will update in case they respond. Windows Phone Sauce has some screenshots of the Zune Marketplace, with Rupee purchases enabled, here.
Just like Apple’s iTunes, other content like music and videos are not available for download in India. Microsoft offers a subscription based music download service called Zune Pass in some markets including US, UK, France, Italy and Australia, among others. With giants keeping their distance from the Indian market, local players like Hungama are the only option for users when it comes to legal music downloads. And sadly, most unlimited downloads passes only offer DRM protected music.