Blackberry World is the content distribution system that will allow owners of the new BB10 smartphones to download and pay for apps. Blackberry is standing on its soapbox, proclaiming that it has 70,000 apps on the first day of launch. This means that Blackberry World is the largest launching app store in the history of digital content. The real story is that 28,000 of these apps are Android files, repackaged into Blackberry Apps.
BlackBerry vice president Martyn Mallick said during a recent press meeting that 40% of the all apps launching on the new BB10 platform will be converted Android Files. These are comprised of games, apps, and other content that the original developer converted over to the Playbook or BB10. The basic premise is using software written by Blackberry or third parties that convert an Android APK file over to the native BAR format. The process is quite extensive and normally needs developer signing keys and other complicated information.
Native apps have a lack of appeal with developers. Most people either release content on IOS, which currently has 800,000 apps, or Android, which has 700,000. Blackberry has found courting companies like Skype, Netflix, and Hulu to write native appsm but it is not going so well. Most of the converted apps in the newly launched BB10 store are sub-par and presenting a chaotic interface.
Obviously, RIM doesn’t know very much about converted Android apps, and has not invested heavily in populating the Android library with QUALITY apps. Good e-Reader currently has the most developed Android and Playbook App Store in the world. All of our Playbook apps were originally Android files, but we are very selective and only let in the highest performing ones. Our Playbook and BB10 apps will work on ANY BB10 phone or any version of the Blackberry Playbook.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CBC, CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and the New York Times.