Opera Launches Subscription Mobile App Store Offering Unlimited Premium Apps At One Fee
Opera mobile browser has been growing at rapid pace in recent times. Their growth has been especially great in India. Recently, Opera reached 50 million Opera mini users mark in India, and their CEO celebrated it by shaking to a Bollywood number in a New Delhi mall. Just to give you an idea, Opera Mini mobile browser has the third largest user base of any app, only behind WhatsApp and Facebook.
Opera has now announced launch of Opera Subscription Mobile store, an extension to their popular mobile app store, which has over 300,000 apps and games in its catalog and has a reach of 100 million visitors every month.
The new subscription mobile app store is basically all-you-can-eat model where mobile users can pay a single fee and access thousands of premium mobile apps. Unlike, Google play store or Apple app store where each premium app is available for a price, Opera wants to give app developers a platform to offer their apps through a subscription service.
While the subscription model has worked really well in music and video categories, offering apps on subscription basis is quite rare.
But Opera has a sound reason why they are doing this – They are targeting telecom operators who can create their own store and allow users to pay a weekly fee to download as many app as they want. So, for example, a user can choose to pay a small weekly fee and install and try our as many apps he wants. They can either renew the subscription at the end of the tenure or stop it. If the subscription is expired, the apps will stop working. For all new users, Opera is also offering a 7 day free trial to try out this new format of downloading premium apps.
In the announcement, Opera says, “By harnessing the extensive catalog of apps and games already available in the Opera Mobile Store, the Opera Subscription Mobile Store makes it possible for mobile operators to be able to offer their users their own “all you can eat” subscription mobile store, where users can download all the premium apps and games they desire for a small weekly fee.”
While we are not sure about end mobile app users, this sure is a great proposition for Telecom Operators. Opera has a white label program, where Opera takes care of virtually all of the operational and administrative overhead. Opera is already on a strong footing as they already have relationships with thousands of developers. Under the while label program Opera will also handle developer payments, and provide you back-office marketing support.
I’d not be surprised, if Indian telecom operators lap it up quickly and start creating their self-branded app stores.