Windows Phone 7 in the past day has quietly passed the 5,000 app mark, according to new stats. As of Wednesday, Microsoft's Windows Phone Marketplace had 5,149 titles. The growth was a quick jump from 4,000 a week earlier and 3,000 at the end of November.
The store size is still well behind those of Apple (300,000) and Google (100,000) but, in roughly two months, has closed in on virtually all small-scale mobile app portals. It has already caught up to Palm's 1.5 year old webOS store and now has a third of the 15,000 apps of BlackBerry App World despite RIM's store being older than Palm's.
The growth is considerably faster than either Apple or Google saw in the early days of their own stores, though Microsoft was helped by launching into modern mobile apps roughly two years later and into a market more receptive to smartphones as a whole.
About 72 percent of Microsoft's apps are paid, but the stats confirmed Microsoft's move towards iPhone-like prices as a clear majority are either 99 cents or free. Games are now much more important and make up 22 percent of the WP7 store where they were just a fraction as important on Windows Mobile.