Nokia has reported that its online app and content store, Ovi Store, is now accessible to 50 million phone users. The company hopes its service will follow the success of Apple's App Store, which recently surpassed 1 billion downloads a mere 9 months after its official introduction. Just like the App Store, Ovi will allow users to install software and games directly to their devices at the touch of a button.

The Finland-based communications company sells roughly 400 million handsets a year, but analysts foresee it struggling to imitate Apple's success. CCS Insight analyst, Ben Wood said that while the Ovi store is a "step in the right direction, Apple is still the king of the hill when it comes to selling applications." To guarantee success, experts are saying that Nokia needs to place an emphasis on the Ovi Store's social element, including how users rate applications and recommend software to friends.

Other companies trying to capitalize on similar services include Research in Motion, the company behind the BlackBerry, Microsoft and Google.