Blackberry head of Application Development at Research in Motion Alec Saunders mentioned on Twitter last week that the company would disallow Android Sideloading on their Playbook Tablets. Today he backpedaled and said they will not remove this feature because of the media firestorm that raged out of control when this story broke last week.
In a recent blog post, Alec Saunders mentioned that “Side-loading on our platform is changing in nature. Side-loading is a developer feature. It exists so that developers can load their apps onto their own devices to test,” he wrote. “It’s there so developers can send a beta release to their testing community for review. It is definitely not there for some people to side load a pirated app.” He reiterated that he pledges to work with the developer community so they can “still quickly and easily test your apps on real hardware.” Attendees at BlackBerry 10 Jam will receive a prototype device on which developers can start building, he said.
So how does RIM plan to curb the rampant Android Piracy that is occurring with people sideloading their apps? With the release of a future upgrade to the BlackBerry PlayBook OS, RIM will include “a feature that will encrypt apps so they can only be run by the user who purchased the app,” Saunders said.
Update: We heard from RIM that the new encryption will be for apps hosted in App World. This will ensure that people are not going to pirate applications hosted in their own ecosystem.