Five months ago, Google shook things up in the Android world with a major rebranding campaign, positioning a number of services under the Google Play moniker. That meant that what we once knew as the Android Market was becoming the Google Play Store, instead. We’re still getting used to those changes (who hasn’t referred to the Play Store as the Market since then?), but now it looks like another smartphone player could be following Google’s lead, and giving its own storefront a similar rebranding.
Microsoft just launched its new Dev Center to replace the App Hub developer portal. While the page continues to mention the Windows Phone Marketplace in a number of places, it also very prominently refers to the “Windows Phone Store”.
Now, that may just be a casual reference to the Marketplace that we shouldn’t be reading too much into. On the other hand, what with the recent news about dropping Metro, perhaps Microsoft is in the mood to introduce other name changes before Windows Phone 8 gets here. Unless this is a recent decision, though, it seems a little far along in WP8 development for us to just be hearing about it now.
Any bets? Is this the first sign of the new Windows Phone Store, or will the Marketplace be staying put for a while yet to come?