One way to get people hooked on to a new platform is to ensure there are lots of apps that are compatible with it. Towards that, Blackberry did the right thing by luring in developers to port Android apps to the Blackberry 10 operating system. This ensured BB10 could quickly reach the 100k app figure mark, something that could have been pretty much impossible if the company had only focused on developing native apps for the new platform.
So what the Blackberry folks essentially did was devise an emulation engine that allowed Android apps to run on the Blackberry 10 OS. This resulted in about 20 percent (20,000 apps) of the 100,000 Blackberry 10 apps to be directly modified Android apps that can now run in a Blackberry environment.
“We give them a very nice on-ramp to get onto the platform,” said Martyn Mallick, Vice President for Global Alliances and Business Development for Blackberry. “Our users deserve to have great content. If that is the fastest way we can get some of that content, that’s great.”
Blackberry has been going all out to woo developers into writing codes for Blackberry apps. This included a $10k guarantee to developers to convince them they will have enough returns in this venture. “Overall we’re excited by what we are seeing in the marketplace,” Mallick said. “We have a high level of confidence we will continue to see more of the application partners come on board.”
However, not all seem to be convinced and among those who aren’t on BB10 yet include Netflix and Instagram. But most of the major apps are present, with companies like Amazon who devised a native Kindle app for the new Blackberry OS.
Right now, it’s only the Z10 smartphone that runs the BB10 operating system, though there obviously are a few more in the pipeline due to launch later in the year. Then there also is a new PlayBook tablet that is also rumored to be in development.