Our look at some of the big stories today in mobile: Amazon’s app store pricing unveiled; Nokia (NYSE: NOK) (yes, Nokia) makes a push on devices in the U.S.; RIM (NSDQ: RIMM) and Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) link up on cloud services.
– Amazon (NSDQ: AMZN) App Store: The online sales giant has yet to officially open its app store for the Android platform, but one enterprising blogger in Germany managed to land on what appeared to be a testing page, and he got a glimpse of what will be on offer, and it looks like Amazon will be making a play on pricing, in addition to exclusive content.
“For funzies,” writes Frank at Android News, he decided to type “http://www.amazon.com/apps” into his browser. Surprisingly, it went to a landing page — now removed — which showed a list of apps and their prices.
So far, Amazon has been relatively coy about what we can expect from its new app store — although it has released certain details, such as an exclusive new Angry Birds game called “Rio” (a play on “Amazon”, I guess?).
Now, if the info that Frank reveals is correct, we can expect to see Amazon pricing some apps, which one can also buy via the Android market, at discounts — not unlike what the company does with other products it sells, such as books. Among those that will be cheaper are “Farm Frenzy,” “Newsweek Mobile,” “Meteor Brick Breaker” and “Learn to Play the Acoustic Guitar.” Exclusive content, such as a Modern Warfare Game and Rio, will be priced at a premium.
– Nokia: Nokia looks like it might be playing interference here… While we get more details about what exactly its partnership with Microsoft might entail going forward, the company is still pushing its brand and its Symbian devices in the U.S. market.
The blog TMO News says that Nokia in April will be launching its C7 device in the country, under the brand-name the Astound and priced at $79.99 on contract. What’s more, the company plans to release four more Nokia devices this year in the U.S., with Windows Phone-based handsets not coming out until 2012.
The news caps off another U.S. affair for Nokia — a residency at the SXSW festival, where the handset maker took aimed to pick up some buzz for itself among the tech-set by taking over The Belmont, a restaurant and club in the city, to run a series of mobile events and concerts.
– RIM/Microsoft: Dow Jones is reporting that RIM is working with Microsoft to put more Blackberry server functions into the cloud. This is really more of an enterprise play than a consumer one, but RIM’s strategy these days is to push products aimed at both segments, so it’s worth watching this to see what other services come out of the deal, particularly with the launch of the PlayBook tablet approaching and a increasing look at cloud for mobile media from all parties.