I’ll buy apps from developers, not the Ovi Store

I had some high hopes for the Ovi Store, but am finding that it is a major failure so far. I posted my thoughts and personal experiences on my ZDNet blog and am curious to hear what other Nokia fans have experienced when it comes to using the Ovi Store. Based upon several comments and questions I have received from readers here, you are not having very good luck with the Ovi Store either. Is anyone happy with the Ovi Store? Anyone experience these issues and feel as down as I am about the Ovi Store? I am particularly unhappy with the inability to download applications if you reset your device, especially given that EVERY other mobile application storefront lets you redownload an unlimited number of times.


34 Comments to I’ll buy apps from developers, not the Ovi Store

Jeremiah Owen
June 17, 2009

Just posted over at ZDNet but here it is again:

After hearing your experience on Mobile Tech Roundup with Bejeweled I
decided against buying anything from the Ovi stor until they resolve the
issue. Really disappointing and should be dealt with pronto if Nokia
wants my money. Come on Nokia I have money I want to give you but
you won’t get it without:

  1. Allow me to re-download apps or at least back them up.
  2. Match Android marketplace 24-hour trial period.

Nokia we deserve better!

Dean Collins
June 17, 2009

When is someone going to open up a third party multiplatform mobile appstore?


If a particular manufacturer wanted something they could set up http://nokia.mobileappstore.com

what do you think?


June 18, 2009

downloaded the updat to ovi yesterday and it almost destroyed my phone. I was down for 4 hrs yesterday while I tried to fix until I realized that wiping my phone was the only fix. Thanks Ovi.

June 18, 2009

ovi sucks the first app i payed for i was charged 3 times and i thought it was an app store not a bunch of bad wallpaper downloads i spend more time sifting threw junk than downloading anything

June 18, 2009

Not many apps for E71x…

Jason Black
June 18, 2009

Matt – sorry to hear you’re having trouble with Ovi Store, but I hope you aren;t writing it off completely just yet … Your point about re-downloading for different devices is a good observation – I will share it with people I know on the Ovi team.

BTW – Did you happen to see the story on forbes.com about Ovi Store, and the work that is being done daily – I think it is a fair assessment:


Thanks! – jason

Matthew Miller
June 18, 2009

Jason, I know my multi device usage is a special case so I did not even include that in my posts or issues and won’t bring that to the table (although there may be many others with multiple Nokia devices too). I am just talking about redownloading to a SINGLE device that has been reset, lost the signal during a download, etc. I still have not gotten any response to my customer service inquiry regarding that issue from Nokia either.

Apple actually lets you install apps on up to 5 devices in your home, which is the most generous policy I have seen of all the mobile operating systems and I don’t expect that can of support (would be nice though).

I will give it another chance in the future if changes are made to make it usable for me. Otherwise, why not just continue to buy and install apps like I always have successfully by dealing directly with the developers?

June 18, 2009

I had to remove the facebook ap because it stopped working, and now I cannot download it again. This sucks!!!

June 18, 2009

is ovi working on making more apps v5 friendly

[…] Miller, who blogs at both ZDnet and NokiaExperts, has decided not to use the store any longer, and will revert to purchasing applications directly […]

June 19, 2009

Thanks Matthew for writing on the general frustration that we (Nokia fans) suffer recently.
As a long term Nokia user (10years+) I agree with you 100% that the business model chosen for Nokia and the level of service offered is far from the current industry trends. I also refuse to use Ovi store to purchase any application (I’ve tested MOSH before and was in overall happy with it). Now all the e-mails that I receive from Nokia that Mosh transformed into OVI and that Ovi rocks, I trash immediately.
I’d expand the subject even further. If Ovi does not give incentives to customers, it gives even less to developers. That has much larger negative impact on Nokia in the medium run as the developers have to justify staying with a least profitable platform and high cost of maintaining their own distribution platform. This also leads to higher cost of developing and distributing applications.
I’ve surrendered my N95 to iPhone despite Nokia’s superiority in hardware. In the end of the day it’s the contents that matters.

June 19, 2009

Ignoring the support and technical issues…

I still don’t tend to use it for my 5800 because of:
-App availability (there’s hardly anything there)

Whereas if you use a 3rd party vendor like Handango (which is probably much easier to get a refund from) I can opt for one of their semi-frequent 10%-25% sales (which is how I got ProfiMail for $20). ProfiMail isn’t even on the Ovi store…

June 22, 2009

The Ovi store is a mess: small # apps, key apps missing, wild incompatibilities among different phones, poor presentation and organization, no in-client search, confusing duplication of functionality (Download App, MOSH, Ovi, …), difficulties getting open source offerings out.

As far as I’m concerned, Symbian phones aren’t smart phones at all anymore; they effectively don’t have installable apps that mere mortals can use. They do make good dumb phones, as long as you stick to what’s pre-installed.

June 22, 2009

I haven’t had any luck in finding anything even remotely useful through the Ovi store. I honestly thought that I would be able to easily find and install a Myspace/facebook app with the utmost ease.

Another horrible reminder that they are just trying to grab attention is that it’s a horrendously slow website to browse and the App-Search engine is just crap really =[

[…] I?ll buy apps from developers, not the Ovi Store […]

June 22, 2009

As mentioned, I may have to resort to getting apps directly from developers. It’s very disappointing that there’s scant apps for the E71x. Also disappointing that I’ve emailed support about the Ovi Store multiple times, and have not gotten a response. The lack of support really kills the potential of this and other smartphones from Nokia.

June 23, 2009

Another issue is the stupid search not working correctly on the Ovi store.

I can manually browse and find apps that fail in the search results all the time.

June 25, 2009

I had widsets on my n82 , when OVI came out it wiped out all the widsets applications – and of course now I can’t find them on OVI. Really stupid of Nokia to mess up a good thing

[…] Internet. I’ll cite one of them related to poor customer support posted by Matthew Miller on Nokia Experts blog.  I totally agree with arguments in that article and comments from Nokia users. In this time of […]

john Crozier
June 30, 2009

Have to agree that 4 days into my ownership of the N97 I have yet to find any apps that are really enjoyable and have found the whole Ovi experience pretty lacklustre.

I was expecting something more from Nokia but instead I have been left wishing I had continued to use Sony Ericsson instead.

[…] are my main issues? As I clearly stated here before, I think the Ovi Store is junk and actually have my Ovi Store shortcut placed in my Junk folder on the N97. I won’t use it […]

[…] I clearly stated here before, I think the Ovi Store is junk and actually have my Ovi Store shortcut placed in my Junk folder on the N97. I won’t use it […]

August 22, 2009

I enjoyed using the ovi store at first. until recently, it came up with a starting error. I uninstalled it and then reinstalled it and it constantly comes up with the same error. Luckily it hasnt ruined my phone. I just have to look a little harder for some apps.

[…] here know my feelings about the Ovi Store and why I currently avoid making any purchases there at all. As Ewan pointed out in his number 1 […]

Richard Massie
September 25, 2009

I install ovistore and Nokia Handwriting Calculator on my 5800. After that i found ALL my other application in memory card is missing (except the ovistore and handwriting). i am confused. so i restart (shutdown and start up) the handphone. After i restart, i check that i lose all of my app and data like the memory card has been re-format. (and of course we cannot re-download)
Those applications is **DESTROYING* my data! Please do some testing before publishing application which may destroy customer data.

[…] Nokia Ovi S&#116ore has &#109ajor issues […]

Raj Bhandari
January 12, 2010

I was trying to buy Roadsync by Dataviz for Symbian from the Ovi store, and wasted over 4 hours.

First time, after I put in my credit card #, I got a message that there wass a problem with the payment and brought me back to the main screen.

I spent 45 minutes on the phone to get that corrected, and they asked me to try again. This time the transaction went through and I was charged $21.64 – but I got a receipt in the email and no activation key.

I have tried everything, including deleting the software on the phone, but the Ovi store says its downloaded and will not give me the option again.

Any thoughts?

Matthew Miller
January 13, 2010

Sorry to hear about your experiences Raj. I recommend you contact the folks at DataViz directly to see if they can help since you do have a receipt for the transaction. They are helpful and hopefully can help out.

June 8, 2010

Nokia has disappointed its customers, customers had great hope for Ovi, but most of them are sad with that. Personally, I can’t buy any application from The Store, it keep saying that “we’re experiencing payment problem” What the heck?
I’ve complained to Nokia Care Center, I guess workers there really good at playing with words, they are asking me to wait until Nokia fixes this problem.

July 15, 2010

Ovi is also bad for developers: i am an app maker myself and i had to do with Nokia for quite some time now – Nokia DOES NOT care about the developers. If i publish an app on OVI store and a user posts a unqualified, absolutely wrong comment about the app, there is no way to discuss removal of posts – which really could destroy app reputation really quickly. Also, there is a problem that app comments get lost constantly (all the comments for an app are gone from one day to another) – no way to get it back. If you drop them an email they say “it will be fixed in the future”. Oh there is sooo much arguments why Nokia & OVI sucks, i think this small box of text will not be sufficient to tell you. RIP Nokia & OVI

Mark Respinger
September 14, 2010

The Ovi store is the biggest piece of garbage on the web. Can’t believe that it won’t even automatically recognise your phone. Nokia has fallen a long way from their heyday and have lost me as a customer. I don’t know where they get off designing stuff without even thinking about what the user wants anymore. They seem to have adopted the attitude that the more layers of menus and confusion they add, the more advanced their products must be. They really need to fire their entire UI team and start again.. If it is not already too late.

October 27, 2010

I just tried to buy an app on Ovi store. It was a dismal failure. I had no feedback or response from the server saying what happened. In general:

Ovi online is a very poorly built site with limited functionality, and lots of problems making standard operation difficult, if not at times impossible.

the Ovi store doesn’t allow you to add credit cards to your account, doesn’t allow you to use a Paypal account, and if you want to download something (even paid apps) and install from a pc You CAN’T.

the ovi store application is unreliable, frustratingly slow and crashed when I tried it on my phone. So I removed it.

So I decided to buy it online on my handset: apart from being very difficult to see on a handset like mine (who uses light gray on an app for the words!); the inbuilt browser is a troll and works very poorly; I had to login, then I was taken to a standard page, despite requesting the specific page. So I had to reopen the app page from the app itsself. Finally, I found the page, clicked buy. Still no luck. I had to enter a card. I did. Then clicked ‘next’ and nothing happened. I eventually had to abandon the entire ‘cart’ after waiting five minutes.

Overall, Nokia builds fine phones for the 20th century. But they really are a company looking backwards, not forwards.

Can it be so hard to build a reliable app/website/store for the Symbian system that they themselves wrote?

Worse, at every turn, they are losing $$$ because I know for one that I won’t ever buy an app from their store (it doesn’t work). If they get it right, it may be too late because I will replace my phone next year… and it won’t be a nokia that I buy.

I have some apps on my phone. But it’s just no worth the hassle of downloading, installing, activating and using. That’s why I believe NOKIA do not fundamentally understand the new era of phones.

I’d be selling this stock because I can’t see anywhere for this company to go but down from here.


[…] was quite the hater of the Ovi Store back when it launched in May 2009 because it did not live up to its promise and had some major issues. As you know, my thoughts about […]

November 25, 2010

I’m disappointed as well. With my N97 I always wait at least 20 seconds until the data is loaded.
Nowadays I buyed an app for 5 dollars. After it was charged and I got an confirmation by sms the ovi store showed up with ‘time outfor this transaction’ and I got nothing for my 5 bugs.
I mean how can they charge before being sure that the app was downloaded? If I did that in my business I would go bankropsy.

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