Android is a smartphone and tablet operating system created by Google and opened up to customization by major device manufacturers, such as Samsung, LG, Sony, and HTC. Shortly after the PlayBook was launched, BlackBerry released an Android runtime which would allow developers to easily put their Android apps onto the tablet. After users were able to earn root access to the PlayBook, it became possible to sideload Android applications onto the PlayBook using a number of tools. With BlackBerry 10, users can do the same thing and with the release of BlackBerry OS 10.2.1, Android APK files will be able to be downloaded directly to device and installed using the on-board system installer. As of BlackBerry OS 10.3, APK files will no longer need to be sideloaded but can instead be downloaded and directly installed through the Amazon Appstore integration.
For everything Android, head over to our sibling site Android Central. Tell them Lloyd sent you.
Aug 30, 2014
Amazon GameCircle will be supported on the BlackBerry 10 Android Runtime
When it comes to the BlackBerry 10 Android Runtime, there's been plenty of debate about whether or not it's good enough to fill the 'app gap' on BlackBerry 10. When the Amazon Appstore deal was announced I was rather skeptical about it all because right now, on official BlackBerry 10 releases the Android Runtime still has what I consider to be a few issues of concern.
Aug 02, 2014
7digital Music Store for BlackBerry 10 updated with bug fixes
If you decided to transition your music from BlackBerry World to the 7digital Music Store app on BlackBerry 10, you'll want to make sure you have the latest version installed. A new update to the 7digital Music Store has now arrived in BlackBerry World and although the change log is small, there's some important changes within it such as improvements for saving your music to your SD Card.
Fix for issue saving to SD Card
Fix for missing featured albums
Fix for Canadian English store sending French emails
The update is live now, so there shouldn't be any waiting for it to arrive. For those who like to keep track of version numbers, it goes from 188.8.131.52 to 184.108.40.206. Are you using the 7digital Music Store or did you look elsewhere for music purchases now? Let us know.
Aug 01, 2014
Max Secure release AntiVirus - a new budget scanner for BlackBerry 10
We've featured Max Mobile Security a couple of times here before, and the same developers have now released AntiVirus - a more cost effective application.
While I suspect that many BlackBerry 10 users will currently be more than happy with the awesome level of security their device gives them, this app will give you some extra reassurance when downloading Android apps/games.
Jul 31, 2014
Amazon Appstore now in more countries
Amazon says that its Appstore for Android is now available in 236 countries and territories following this recent expansion of 41 more regions. That said, not all apps within the Amazon Appstore catalog will be available in all regions due to local laws and restrictions on certain apps and content. However, for consumers, this will be another venue to purchase and download apps, which will be especially beneficial to BlackBerry customers who have access to Amazon's Appstore to deliver Android apps to their devices.
Jul 19, 2014
HeroCraft's Ice Rage: Hockey available for free on the Amazon Appstore today!
Although I'm not much of a sports fan, I do oddly enough enjoy playing a lot of sports video games, especially hockey games. I've been playing them since NHL 95' arrived back on the Super NES and Sega Genesis all those many years ago. Earlier today, StuBurke8 let me know that HeroCraft's awesome Ice Rage: Hockey was available on the Amazon Appstore for free so I decided to give it a go and it's pretty awesome.
Jul 15, 2014
Blackphone fires back: 'BlackBerry betrayed its customers and jettisoned its credibility'
The folks working on the security-centric Android-powered Blackphone have posted a rebuttal to the criticisms made by BlackBerry recently. The piece focuses primarily on BlackBerry's poor market performance, dwindling stock price, and ultimate reliance on competing platforms.
The main selling point Blackphone CEO Toby Weir-Jones posited for their product compared to BlackBerry was encrypted peer-to-peer voice calling, though it continues on to describe the BES infrastructure as restrictive and ineffectual. He even goes so far as to say BlackBerry's previous tiffs with local governments over lawful interception resulted in betrayals of customers.
Jun 27, 2014
Amazon giving away 30 paid apps for free today and Saturday!
It looks like Bla1ze — CrackBerry's new Editor in Chief — is sleeping in this morning (he's still getting the hang of this whole waking up early to blog thing), so here's a little FYI for all of you running the Amazon App Store on your BlackBerry 10 phone.
For today and Saturday, Amazon is giving away 30 paid Android apps for free!
At the time of this posting, I have not checked each app to see how it runs on BlackBerry 10, so be sure to test things out and drop a note in the comments with your results. And if you're not running the Amazon App Store on your phone, click here for a tutorial on how to install it. It looks like US, India, Australia and the UK are all supported regions for this sale. That said, it may also show up in other regions, so if you find the apps are on sale for you be sure to spread the word. And keep in mind, the Amazon App Store will soon be officially supported by BlackBerry, so you can consider loading it up as a head start.
Here's a full list of apps and games covered by the Amazon App Store giveaway, which are temporarily available for free (31 in the US):
Jun 12, 2014
What would it take to get me back to BlackBerry?
Several months ago I embarked on an experiment. As a guy who'd used BlackBerry since 2000 I had deep experience with the platform along with good experience on iOS. But I had practically no experience on Android. So I put my Z10 on my bedside table and left it there while I moved my SIM into a Samsung Galaxy S4. At the time it was among the best Android handsets available.
I realize I'm in dangerous territory on CrackBerry when I say this, but unless certain things change it is very unlikely that I'll switch back to BlackBerry. I truly wish this was not the case. I say this because overall I think BlackBerry makes a better device and a better OS. I wish a few things would change to tip the scale back in their favor. But as it stands the major factor keeping me away from BlackBerry is app availability.
I could make the argument complicated and tell you that it's about 3rd party apps AND Google services. But in reality the Google services are apps, and they are available in Google Play. If BlackBerry 10 gave me access to Google's awesome apps along with the selection of Android apps available in the Play store, I'd feel like I had the best of both worlds.
Jun 04, 2014
Get Instagram 6.0.1 on your BlackBerry right now!
It may be an Android app and not available in BlackBerry World, but that doesn't stop us BlackBerry 10 folk from using it. Instagram has been updated to include a bunch of new photo editing tools and enhancements which you can download from the Android app store of your choice.
May 15, 2014
We've updated our CrackBerry Android app with some important fixes
A quick heads up for those of you rocking the official CrackBerry App on Android— we've pushed out an update today with a number of important fixes. You're going to want to make sure you download this one, particularly if you've seen increased data usage or are using the widget on your home screen. The fixes apply to all the editorial (ie not the Tapatalk-esque one) apps for all our Mobile Nations sites, including Connectedly, Android Central, iMore and WPCentral.
Apr 28, 2014
Grab a bargain from ALDI in the UK with their Android app
Another Android app which may well be of interest to UK consumers is from the supermarket chain ALDI. Whilst we don't all have a local store, their market presence is certainly growing and they sure have some attractive prices.
Apr 07, 2014
BlackBerry announces updated Tools for Android Development 2.0.2 Beta
For BlackBerry developers, having the latest and greatest tools to make apps is important and to help keep things moving along, BlackBerry has now released their BlackBerry Tools for Android Development 2.0.2 Beta. The last update to the tools came back in October, so a new update is great to see. The list of feature additions is pretty long for this one but we’ve got them all for you past the break.
Apr 05, 2014
Android apps on BlackBerry 10 - Why the negativity?
I'm sure you've seen that since BlackBerry 10.2.1 hit the scene we've decided to feature a few more Android apps and games that were not previously available to us. I've also noticed in both the post comments and in the CrackBerry forums that some of you aren't too happy about this — and we get that.
Whilst everyone is entitled to their own opinion, I'm slightly baffled as to why you wouldn't want to know about a great game/app that runs on BlackBerry 10, even if it's Android. We've had Android ports running on BB10 for some time, but it's only been since 10.2.1 was released that I've noticed the negative remarks.
Sure, using the likes of Snap, the Amazon Appstore or APK Train may not be ideal for some users as traditionally we are all loyal and want to download our apps from BlackBerry World. But the fact of the matter is that if we find a great game/app that happens to be an Android one, but runs beautifully on BlackBerry 10, surely it's our job to let you know?
Mar 27, 2014
PSA: Microsoft Office Mobile won't work on the BlackBerry 10 Android runtime
Earlier, Microsoft announced that their Microsoft Office Mobile was going free on Android and iOS while ditching the need for a subscription in order to use it for 'view-only' purposes. Since then, we've had people emailing us and letting us know that since Android apps can run on BlackBerry 10, we should post about it or asking if it works on the BlackBerry 10 Android runtime.
Mar 26, 2014
Get Real Table Tennis onto your BlackBerry 10 smartphone
We've featured our fair share of tennis games over the last year or so for BlackBerry 10, but not table tennis that I can recall. Real Table Tennis is another great game that unfortunately you won't find in BlackBerry World (at the time of publication), but you can grab it from the third party Android store Snap.
Mar 13, 2014
Another Android beauty - Mad Skills Motocross 2 on BlackBerry 10
Time for some racing action with Mad Skills Motocross 2. This is another great game that you won't find in BlackBerry World as it's an Android one but you can grab it from Snap (instructions at the base of the page) as long as you are running BlackBerry OS 10.2.1.
Mar 11, 2014
Installing Android apps on BlackBerry 10 just got easier - All aboard the APK Train
It seems there's a new place to download your Android apps if you are running BlackBerry OS 10.2.1 and that's apktrain.com. We've featured the likes of Snap and the Amazon Appstore a bunch of times but there's a big difference between those and APK Train.
Feb 16, 2014
Get Lego Ninjago REBOOTED on to your BlackBerry 10 smartphone
Who doesn't like Lego right? Oh, the memories of playing as a child - I'll get back on track now. Once again I've come across an awesome game for you BlackBerry 10 owners running OS 10.2.1. Lego Ninjago REBOOTED is an Android game but I've got it running perfectly on my Z30 and Q10 thanks to the easy loading of Android APK's we now have since the OS update.
A big deal for many Android users who have now updated to BBM 2.0 is the ability to now use BBM Voice. This is also great for us existing BlackBerry users, who have had BBM Voice for some time, as we can now utilize the feature with our buddies who use Android phones.
Feb 12, 2014
Get F18 Carrier Landing Lite on your BlackBerry thanks to OS 10.2.1
For Z10 and Z30 owners running BlackBerry 10.2.1 you may be interested to hear that one of my all time favorite games is now available to download - F18 Carrier Landing Lite. It's the Android version, hence the 10.2.1 part, but it works perfectly and is totally awesome if simulator games are your thing.
Feb 06, 2014
Get your Android apps here! Snap gets updated with a bunch of fixes
Chances are that if you have been lucky enough to update to BlackBerry 10.2.1 (yes, some carriers are still lagging behind) you more than likely have followed our advice and installed Snap - the Google Play client for BlackBerry 10 - allowing for simple installation of Android APK's onto your BlackBerry.
Feb 04, 2014
CrackBerry-tested Android Apps for BlackBerry 10
Now that BlackBerry 10.2.1 is available there has been an influx of folks wanting to know if their favorite app works when the Android version is loaded. To help keep things a bit more organized, we figured we should put together our very own CrackBerry list of apps that are known to be working or 'mostly' working on BlackBerry 10.2.1.
Rather than picking just 50 or so random apps though, we dug through the forums and comments section to find apps people really wanted and tested them out. Of course, there is some exceptions because even though a TON of folks want banking apps, we don't exactly have accounts all over the world to test those out.
In addition to this post, we also set up a thread in the CrackBerry Forum for you all to share what apps you have working as well. As long as you all keep telling us apps that you're wondering about, we'll keep checking them out and testing them. If those apps are working we'll add them to the list.
If you're into sending photos to your friends but don't want the files lingering around - Snapchat is the app for you. It's a simple free app that lets you send photos or videos to your contacts with a set expiration time - so they'll have say, 4 seconds to see it before it's no longer available. It's a bit of a novelty but still fun to play around with.
Unfortunately Snapchat is not currently...
If you're a Mac user and felt slighted that you couldn't take advantage of the ability to run Android 2.3.3 apps on your BlackBerry - this one's for you. While the original method for converting and running Android 2.3.3 apps was really just for those using Windows, forums member rotmistr has come to the rescue for Mac users with a very easy to follow guide of Xsacha's method originally posted...
Candy Crush Saga. You've likely heard of the game. I'm not sure how anyone possibly couldn't have really. It's insanely popular with over 15.5 million people playing it daily and unlike Angry Birds, people haven't yet started to get burnt out on it. It's a pretty basic game when you think about it, candy drops and you must align the colors so that they disappear and gather up points before time...
Just a few days ago Bla1ze wrote about being able to run almost any Android 2.3.3 apps on BB10 courtesy of forums member xsacha. What the work around was able to do, simply put, is to enable a permission that allows Android apps that utilize native code to run under BB10.
Previously we were led to believe that only Java based Android apps would run using the Dalvik JVM which BlackBerry had...
Side loading Android apps onto BlackBerry 10 has become a pretty basic thing for folks to these days. The problem with that though for some folks is that not all apps work. Sometimes you load them up and they just crash and burn. As we already know, some of that will be addressed with the forthcoming Android 4.2 support for BlackBerry 10 but if you're looking to try and get ahead a little bit, a...
When it comes to apps on the BlackBerry Q10, there is a huge selection available in BlackBerry World. For those times when you can't quite find what you need however, sideloading an Android app may be the way to go.
While many users are purists and refuse to load up non-BlackBerry applications, others (like the entire CB team) know that having the option to load up Android apps is just an...
If you're not a fan of the process to sideload Android apps to your BlackBerry from a Windows PC or Mac, there is an alternative way that is a bit easier to manage.
A simple Google Chrome extension can have you sideloading apps galore in just a few minutes.
This method is really the easiest we've found and, aside from some time setting it up, loading up apps takes just a minute or two.
In our first installment of Sideload This we checked out a cool app that I love called Paperkarma.
Today we move to another app that I use almost daily - Out of Milk.
Out of Milk is a simple shopping list utility that syncs with your account, so it makes for a great app for families that need to manage one or more lists. The cool thing about Out of Milk is that it not only has a shopping list,...
With the Samsung Unpacked event at Radio City Music Hall in New York City all over and done with, there has been plenty of talk about the Samsung Galaxy S4 happening across all of our Mobile Nations sites.
The folks over at Android Central are understandably excited, even though they had to endure the awkward keynote (You can relive it here - If you really want to do that to yourself). And over...
With the new BlackBerry Z10, one of the awesome features (if you want to call it that) is that you can not only download apps from BlackBerry World, but also sideload Android applications. We first saw this on the BlackBerry PlayBook and it helps broaden the app spectrum to give us more apps to choose from to fill the "app gap".
Now I know not everyone is up for sideloading and of course we don'...
CrackBerry is in no way Affiliated with BlackBerry. We take pride in our unbiased content, however do occasionally receive free products from vendors that we review or discuss. For more info click here.