Aug 5, 2010 News
BlackBerry OS 6.0 is launched by RIM in concert with the rolling out of the new BlackBerry Torch, a phone that features both a touch-screen model and a side-out keyboard. Now the question is, whether BlackBerry developers would welcome the new OS ? Mobile developers today have a number of options in terms of platforms, including Apple’s iOS 4 and Google’s Android. Besides these two frontrunners there are Microsoft Windows Phone 7, and Nokia Symbian3. In such a competitive market, it is important for any platform to gain the faith and acceptance of the developer community, which the newly launched OS 6.0 may lack.
It is to note that Smartphone users want access to a versatile range of apps across all categories. It is definitely a big challenge for RIM to match the variety now available with the Apple and Android platforms. So for the success of a platform, it has to be apps friendly.
Now it has also been reported that the applications written for BlackBerry OS 5, the most used one, will run on version 6. But the reverse is not always true. RIM has commented today, “BlackBerry 6 is designed to run on some, but not all, BlackBerry phones now in the market, including the BlackBerry Bold 9700 and 9650 and the Pearl 3G.” As of now, you can’t upgrade too; however RIM says, “upgrades await carrier certifications”.
It’s a kind of a ‘chicken-or-egg’ problem now; users want to have applications, and BlackBerry app developers want an assurance about the availability of users. In a nutshell, to convince the BlackBerry developers to launch apps on a platform which is yet to be accepted well by the users is going to be difficult and that might actually be a key factor in determining the success of BlackBerry OS 6.0. On the other hand, there’s no announcement of OS 6 devices from Sprint, Verizon or T-Mobile till now.
It would be interesting to see how fast RIM can address these issues to increase the reach of their OS 6.0 and if it gains acceptability of the BlackBerry developer community.