Microsoft is continuing its Windows Phone Marketplace rollouts this week, opening its online store for apps and games in 22 new markets. Although the Marketplace launched on Windows Phone devices back in March for the new markets, the online web version is now available today. Windows Phone users in Bulgaria, Costa Rica, Croatia, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Ukraine, Venezuela, UAE, Bahrain, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kazakhstan, Israel, Thailand, and Vietnam can access a local version at windowsphone.com/marketplace.
Microsoft also took the opportunity to promise better keyword searches in its web Marketplace soon. As part of its general Windows Phone Marketplace clean up, the company says it will remove irrelevant keywords from certain apps that don't reflect the true function or content of an application. "Our expectation is that you should start seeing more relevant search results when it’s done, particularly for popular apps," says Microsoft's Mazhar Mohammed. The software maker also reminded users that they will be requiring Windows Phone 7.5 to buy, download, or update apps from the Marketplace, an update that has been available for existing devices for a number of months now.