In an interesting article over at GigaOm, the developers of the popular app textPlus (site) discuss why they decided to invest in Windows Phone instead of RIM's BlackBerry for their service, recognizing what we appears to be a growing trend in the market, that Windows Phone is the de facto third-way.
For those who don't know, textPlus is another free SMS app that uses a generated and assigned number to allow you to text anyone, anywhere (in the US and Canada) for free in addition from app-to-app. In the future, free VOIP calls will also be brought over to Windows Phone (it's available now on iOS and Android). The app was released a few days ago to the Windows Phone Marketplace for free and truth be told, while a bit slow it's done quite well.
The question GigaOm had for the developers was why did they go with Windows Phone before a BlackBerry client? The answer was simple, it's a beautiful and elegant OS. Scott Lahman, CEO and founder of TextPlus:
“The second we saw the OS and (Nokia) Lumia devices, we knew we wanted to support it. It’s a beautiful OS with a fresh take on what a phone OS can look like and that’s motivation for us to innovate. The OS brings elements that would be buried vertically to the top and you can see all your conversations, communities and contacts lists very easily. And you can pin specific conversations to the home screen. It’s elegant, easy to use, and it puts all of the elements at your fingertips.”
Though they had entertained making a BlackBerry client, they reportedly couldn't get the level of quality that they wanted. And once RIM announced their new OS, BB10, the uncertainties left the company feeling none to confident. By comparison, Nokia and Microsoft according to Lahman "...are some hungry organizations.".
Microsoft did not contribute financially to the development of textPlus for Windows Phone though they are reportedly providing some marketing help.
All in all, some great news to see developers finally taking the risk with Windows Phone over the dying RIM empire. The notion that Microsoft will be the third player is a forgone conclusion in our mind so it's nice to see some others finally noticing too. Pick up textPlus for free in the Marketplace right here.