Nokia Buys Mobile Analytics Startup Motally

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Nokia today announced the purchase of Motally, Inc., a San Francisco, Calif.-based mobile-analytics company with eight employees, for an undisclosed amount. Motally’s current tracking service, which supports iOS, Android, BlackBerry and web applications, will be adapted for Qt, Symbian, Meego and Java applications, although Nokia says current Motally customers and platforms will continue to be served.

The Motally purchase is a positive step for Nokia to make its Ovi application store more attractive to developers. A recent survey shows that 42 percent of third party developers creating software for Nokia devices rate the Ovi Store as below average when compared to competing mobile app stores. Better analytics could quickly change these kinds of sentiments about Ovi, given that such data helps identify user demographics, application performance and time spent within an app or a section of an app. Armed with this information, developers can retool their mobile software to boost revenues and target appropriate audiences.

While the terms of the Motally sale aren’t available, there is a prior Nokia tie-in, which could help explain why Motally was chosen as an acquisition: Motally is backed by BlueRun Ventures, an early-stage venture capital fund that formed in 1998 as Nokia Venture Partners and became BlueRun in 2005. Additionally, BlueRun co-founder and current partner, John Malloy, held a prior management position at Nokia.

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