Alec Saunders BB Jam
BlackBerry Apps | 43 Comments BlackBerry 10.1 Gold SDK now available for developers If you're a developer looking to do some coding this weekend you're in luck. The 10.1 Gold SDK has been made available for download so you can get your crazy code on. This update includes new features that support both the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10. Version 10.1 includes support for...


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Jul 21, 2014 BlackBerry 10 app developers are twice as likely to code in HTML

BlackBerry 10 app developers are twice as likely to code in HTML

It's not easy to make it as an app developer. That's the key takeaway from the latest State of the Developer Nation report from Vision Mobile, pulling together data from more than 10,000 mobile developers (including some of you) across 137 countries. With that many developers they were able to get a broad view of what's popular and (more importantly) what's successful in making great apps.

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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.

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Feb 01, 2014 Why BlackBerry is awesome - A developer perspective

Back in August of 2013 the fine folks over at MoDev teamed up with BlackBerry to host the Built for BlackBerry $5K Contest. The goal, as you may have guessed by the name, was to help developers create great apps that would qualify for the Built for BlackBerry program. There were cash prizes to be won and each developer who entered would also get a free BlackBerry 10 device. In the end, three winners were chosen: Magic4Square, Aerize Explorer and Charlottesville Ballet.

The developer of Charlottesville Ballet, Steve Jernigan is CEO of Cloudspyre, LLC, has now taken to the MoDev site to explain a little bit of the background process for entering the contest and why it was such a great experience for him. The title of his blog posting says a lot about it - Why BlackBerry is Awesome. Though I do encourage you to read the full post for yourself, here's a bit of what Steve had to say.

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Nov 15, 2013 Talking OS 10.2.1 and Android apps on BB10 FAQ, w/ BlackBerry's Alec Saunders

Alec Saunders

Earlier this week, BlackBerry posted on their dev blog an official note about the Android Runtime update coming to users as part of OS 10.2.1.

There is more to 10.2.1 than updating the runtime from Gingerbread 2.3 to Jelly Bean 4.2.2  -- this is also the update that allows BlackBerry app developers to build headless apps -- a much sought after feature by native BlackBerry app developers and BlackBerry 10 owners alike.

That said, the deeper integration between BlackBerry 10 and Android in 10.2.1 is garnering a massive amount of attention from users, as with this update BlackBerry 10 owners can now install Android .apk files (actual Android apps) directly onto their phone. 

With a high percentage of Android apps compatible and working flawlessly on BlackBerry 10.2.1, this update basically means the perceived "app gap" in the BlackBerry ecosystem has been closed, with only a little crack remaining. Looking at the top 50 Android apps in the Google Play store, nearly all of them will work perfectly on BB10, as will tens and literally hundreds of thousands more. 

With a big move like this there are a lot of questions to be asked. Luckily, we have answers. And where we didn't have them ourselves, we asked BlackBerry's VP of Developer Relations and BlackBerry Ecosystem Builder, Alec Saunders for some clarification.

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Oct 21, 2013 In San Francisco next week? Be sure to hit up the Samsung Developers Conference and check out the Android Central Live show in person!

Official Community Partner

As I mentioned earlier today in my From the Editor's Desk post, our sibling site Android Central is taking a page out of the CrackBerry books and will be firing up the Android Central Live Show in San Francisco next week at the first annual Samsung Developers Conference.

Going live with coverage isn't easy, and we have some solid experiencing doing it now thanks to CrackBerry Live at BlackBerry Live, so I'll be flying down to SF to give a helping hand to Android Central's Phil Nickinson and Andrew Martonik as they take to the stage and interview developers, session leaders and other attendees next Monday and Tuesday (28th/29th). Tune into for all of the livestreaming action and show coverage.

These days a lot of mobile developers build on multiple platforms, so I know we have a lot of BB10 developers reading this who are also developing for Android. So if you're in San Francisco next week, you should totally pick up a ticket (they're only $299 and there's still some left) and swing on by the event. And if you have any hot apps to show off or want to get on the Android Central Live show, hit up the link below for more details and you can likely do just that. 

Of course, if you find me in the evening (typically near the lobby bar) and mention this post, your next drink is on me. It's the CrackBerry way - even if I'm helping out an Android show. :)

Learn more about Android Central Live
Learn more being on Android Central Live
Register now for the Samsung Developers Conference

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Sep 26, 2013 The latest stats on the BlackBerry 10 app ecosystem

Today during the Jam Asia keynote, we got a lot of numbers thrown at us about the health of the BlackBerry 10 platform. It was a bit hectic trying to initially make heads or tails of everything, but now we've got all of the main stats that were mentioned. 

  • 131,700+ apps for BlackBerry 10; total apps in BlackBerry World 256,668 - at same point (7 months) in OS lifecycle, Apple had 17,500, Android had 2,908
  • 37% of apps on BlackBerry World are from Asia Pacific developers
  • 9 out of 10 Asia Pacific BlackBerry developers recommend BlackBerry as a development platform
  • 33% of developers in Asia generate revenues through sales in North America
  • 20% generate revenues through sales in Europe
  • 4% generate revenues through sales in Middle East and Africa.
  • BlackBerry World carrier and in-app payment integration implemented with nearly 70 carriers integrated across 46 countries
  • More than 2x apps per user downloaded on BlackBerry 10 vs BlackBerry OS
  • Percentage of paid apps on BlackBerry 10 more than 5x than BlackBerry OS
  • Users generate 7x more revenue per download on BlackBerry 10 vs BlackBerry OS

There were a few others scattered around the talk, but those were the big ones. The comparisons to BlackBerry OS certainly look good, but aren't much of a surprise. Do any of these apps look surprising to you? 

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Apr 27, 2013 Weekend Coder: HelloWorld

Weekend Coder is our new series geared toward BlackBerry developers

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Apr 17, 2013 BlackBerry 10.1 is bringing plenty of changes - Here's some of what we're seeing

BlackBerry 10.1 will be the next major update to the BlackBerry 10 platform

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Apr 16, 2013 BlackBerry Jam Unplugged: A funny, educational look at BlackBerry development

With BlackBerry Jam Americas happening next month in Orlando, the official BlackBerry Developers Blog has kicked off a new funny but educational video series called the BlackBerry Jam Unplugged. The goal of the series being not to inundate folks with a bunch of heavy talk, huge blog posts but instead, make the passing of development information easily consumable and fun. 

Last year we started sharing roadmaps for our tools and APIs with our community, and now we’re looking to give that information a bit more color. Sure, there’s a little bit of information on the roadmaps talking about what the features will entail, but we don’t usually get the chance to explain them in more detail. Of course, we could create long blog articles to try and cover the “ins” and “outs” of the functionality, but that can be a little bit tedious. So we figured we could do something a little different and frankly just a little bit weird. We decided to give you some background on the features as part of a video blog series. Now you may ask, what’s weird about that… well, you’ll have to watch the videos to find out. We’ll be running this video series leading up to BlackBerry Jam Americas in Orlando to give some more background of some of the topics that we’ll be discussing at length during the conference.

I don't want to spoil the videos for anyone but let me just say, if you're interested in learning more about BlackBerry development but get lost in some of the lingo -- you'll want to check the videos out for sure. Thus far, three of them have been published and they're each equally entertaining and informative. You can check out the videos on the BlackBerry Developer Blog or head on over to the BlackBerry Dev YouTube page.

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Mar 04, 2013 Clearing up the Built for BlackBerry and $10k Developer Commitment Program Questions

Clearing up the Built for BlackBerry and $10k Developer Commitment Program Questions

We've talked about the Built for BlackBerry Program and the 10k Developer Commitment Program many times before and developers will know that app submission deadlines have been changing a bit lately due to the huge influx of app being submitted in the run up to the BlackBerry 10 Launch. You may have seen the Built for BlackBerry section in BlackBerry World already, where some apps have already been approved for the program. However, there have been many questions asked on Twitter and in the forums on these two programs and many different answers have been given. Thankfully, Alec Saunders has posted up some information in the BlackBerry Developers' Blog.

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Feb 14, 2013 BlackBerry WebWorks SDK gets updated, now lets you add in-app purchases and more
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BlackBerry WebWorks SDK gets updated, now lets you add in-app purchases and more

If you're a developer who uses WebWorks to code up your apps, you'll be pleased to hear that the WebWorks SDK has been updated. The main thing added to the update is support for the Payment Service, this means you can now add in-app purchases, one-time purchases and subscription-based services. If this is something you have been waiting for, then get your WebWorks SDK updated today.  

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Feb 05, 2013 BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha C shown off at BlackBerry Jam Europe

Dev Alpha C announced at BlackBerry Jam Europe

The Dev Alpha C has just been shown during the General Session at BlackBerry Jam Europe. Many developers got themselves a Dev Alpha A or B in order to aid in their development to build for the BlackBerry 10 platform. However, it was to build for the BlackBerry Z10 model. With the BlackBerry Q10 coming later this year, developers will want to start building for that model so in comes the Dev Alpha C. 

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Feb 04, 2013 BlackBerry 10 Jam Europe - The night before

The calm before the storm. Well, sort of. Richard and I are in Amsterdam for BlackBerry 10 Jam Europe so here's a little taster of what's to come. Tomorrow morning kicks off with the keynote where hopefully we will get some interesting news. Yes, I know the last week has been hectic enough already but we need some good stuff for the developers that have travelled from far and wide to be here in Amsterdam.

With BlackBerry 10 now unveiled and the BlackBerry Z10 getting into customers hands, there is a real hype here within the developer community. Sure, the devs on Team BlackBerry have always had a tonne of love for the platform but with the launch of the new OS there really is a sense of excitement and passion from them. See how happy the nice lady is in the video - a perfect example of the feeling here right now.

See you in the morning for the keynote that we will be live blogging. 10:30am local time in Amsterdam (4:30am EST).

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Feb 02, 2013 BlackBerry announces Limited Edition device availability for Verizon Wireless developers

BlackBerry 10

In the last few weeks, developers who qualified for the Limited Edition device have been submitting their applications to trade up from their Dev Alpha. However, those who are on the Verizon network were receiving emails about an issue with the CDMA carrier in the USA. Today BlackBerry released a statement concerning the availability:

Many developers have already submitted their requests for the Limited Edition BlackBerry 10 device. We've started sending out confirmation emails to those that have qualified for the device. Due to unforeseen circumstances beyond our control we are unable to offer a Limited Edition BlackBerry 10 for developers on the Verizon network.

In addition, for those developers who wish to remain with Verizon, BlackBerry is offering them the following choice in lieu of the Limited Edition BlackBerry 10 device.

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Jan 29, 2013 Alec Saunders and Marty Mallick take a leap of faith for BlackBerry developers

While in Las Vegas for CES this year, Alec Saunders, VP Developer Relations, and Marty Mallick, Sr. Director, Strategic Business Development, set out to prove how dedicated that are to BlackBerry developers. They took to the top of the Stratosphere Hotel to take the longest standing free fall jump in the world - 855 feet down - all to show their support for BlackBerry developers. Very cool to still see such dedication from the BlackBerry team - we can't wait to see what's in store for tomorrow. Check out the full video above.

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Jan 17, 2013 'App of the Week' contest for developers kicks off January 21st

BlackBerry Jam Developer

RIM is still steaming all ahead for developers and their latest contest adds some fun to the mix. The App of the Week contest kicks off January 21st and lets developers create an app based on specified criteria to win prizes. Devs will have six days to create an app and are then judged by their peers and expert judges. Week one starts off with a Cascades app using the share functionality and Integrating video streaming. Winners can receive a BlackBerry PlayBook, tickets to BlackBerry Jam Europe or even Jam Zone points. You can check out full contest rules and details from the link below. 

More information on the App of the Week contest 

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Jan 16, 2013 The Balkan BlackBerry Developer Group has a special challenge for all BlackBerry game developers
BlackBerry Developer Group Balkan

Are you a BlackBerry game developer? If so, the Balkan BlackBerry Developer group has a special challenge lined up for you. All you need to do is send them the best game you have developed in the last 12 months and you could win some some pretty stellar prizes. Check out the details below:

Together with Augmented Citizen – Dan Romescu we’ve prepared a challenge for you – BlackBerry Game Developers! All you need to do is to send “The Best Game” you developed in the last 12 Months to (please use “Challenge For all Great BlackBerry Game Developers” as a Subject) before 05. February 2013. Be sure to include link to BlackBerry World and description.

Best three (3) developers will get Business tickets (worth 549EUR per winner) and Mentorship (worth 1.000EUR per winner) for the biggest Games Developers Conference in Germany – Quo Vadis!

If you're looking to get some help, exposure and do some networking this a prime opportunity that you won't want to pass up. Make sure you check out the link below for the full details and good luck!

BlackBerry Balkan Dev Group

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Jan 14, 2013 BlackBerry UX design team offers up official BlackBerry 10 icons for developer use
BlackBerry 10 Icons

With BlackBerry 10 there are a lot of design changes in place over the previous BlackBerry OS iterations. As such, there is a whole new set of icons and visuals styles that will be used. To keep things in sync visually, there is a set of UI guidelines that developers should follow when creating apps. To help make that happen, the BlackBerry UX design team has now shared the action icons used throughout BlackBerry 10 for developer use. If you're building an app, you'll want to have these handy in case you need to implement them.

Download the BlackBerry 10 action icons

Via: BerryReview

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Jan 11, 2013 Reminder: BlackBerry 10 Community Port-A-Thon today at 12p EST


Don't forget - today at noon EST the BlackBerry 10 Community Port-A-Thon is starting up and will run for 36 hours. You can join in from wherever you are - the couch, bed or even your cubicle at work . You can port over as many apps as you can in the given time and will get rewards as you go. Each eligible app can get you $100 and you even have a chance to get a BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha

We want to see some awesome apps when BlackBerry 10 lands in a few weeks, so if you have the time, head to the link below to register and get in on the porting action!

Register now for the BlackBerry 10 Community Port-A-Thon 

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Jan 07, 2013 Developers: Are you eligible for the limited edition BlackBerry 10 trade up program? Be sure to check your email!

BlackBerry 10

If you submitted an app in hopes of getting a limited edition BlackBerry 10 phone in exchange for your Dev Alpha, be sure to check your email today. Reports are coming in that RIM is contacting developers to let them know if they qualified for the limited edition device. If you met the criteria and submitted your request you should be finding out if you will indeed be able to trade up after the BlackBerry 10 launch. Many users in the forums have already been accepted, so check your email and see if you're one of the lucky few. Be sure to hit up the forums and let us know!

Discuss more in the CrackBerry forums 

Image Credit 

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Dec 31, 2012 Reminder to developers - Only 11 days left to submit your apps for BlackBerry 10!


Heads up developers! It's the final day of December and that means January has snuck up on us. While you may have though you had plenty of time to get your apps submitted for BlackBerry 10, there are only 11 short days left to get them in! It's been months of webcasts, hackathons and port-a-thons and now we're in the final stretch. If you want to be sure your apps are approved and ready for BlackBerry 10, you have until 8p EST on January 11th to get them in.

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Dec 21, 2012 Here comes the Android port-a-thon

Android Apps

Calling all Android developers! RIM is hosting yet another port-a-thon in a few weeks to help you get your Android applications ported over to BlackBerry 10! The event is on January 11, 2013 and runs for 36 hours. It's a virtual event so you can login from anywhere you want - your bed, your couch or even your couch bed. Best of all? You can get $100 for each approved app and also be entered to win a BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha. Not too shabby! Hit up the link below for all the details. 

More on the Android Port-A-Thon 

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Dec 20, 2012 Another Got Game Port-A-Thon from RIM - This time it's coming to Hong Kong

Hong Kong

RIM's gaming Port-A-Thon's have been quite a regular occurrence lately and things aren't slowing down prior to the New Year. We reported just last week about another virtual one in Australia and today RIM have announced another onsite 'Got Game Port-A-Thon', this time in Hong Kong. The event will take place on December 22nd on Tsing Island and as usual it will give developers the opportunity to get on the spot help from BlackBerry experts to port games over to BlackBerry 10 from other platforms.

As usual there are some incentives for developers which you can find below in the full press release. If this new event is as successful as the past ones then we are sure to see yet another huge bunch of games ported over to the forthcoming operating system.

Keep them coming RIM. You're doing a grand job so far.

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Dec 14, 2012 RIM to hold another 36 hour virtual 'Got Game Port-A-Thon' this weekend - Devs, get your coffee and Red Bull ready!

BB Dev

We told you recently about the Australian BlackBerry Got Game Port-A-Thon that took place in Sydney and it looks like RIM is taking it one step further now. Developers who could not attend the event can now take advantage of a virtual event this weekend. The All Aboard BlackBerry Port-A-Thon will take place on December 14th and will run for 36 hours.

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Dec 13, 2012 Looking back on the Maribor BlackBerry 10 Mini Jam - They jammed all day and all night

Looking back on the Maribor BlackBerry 10 Mini Jam - They jammed all day and all night

On November 24th, 2012, BlackBerry 10 Mini Jam took place in Maribor, Slovenia. There were over 200 developers in attendance, all hungry to learn and develop apps for the BlackBerry platform. The event was organised by Branko Nikolić, of Hedone Hawker Design and of the BlackBerry Balkan Developer Group Manager, is the first of its kind. Though Branko has promised there will be more to come. He plans to take the Mini Jam to Macedonia, Serbia and Croatia.

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Dec 11, 2012 BlackBerry 10 Gold SDKs now available for developers

Dev Alpha

It's been a long road for BlackBerry devs, but today the Gold SDKs for BlackBerry 10 are officially available for download. The SDKs come in various flavors including AIR, Native, HTML5 and Cascades. These should send plenty of developers well on their way to some awesome apps for BlackBerry 10. Just remember, you can still submit apps for the $10K Developer Commitment as long as you get them in by January 21st. Keep reading for the full press release and download links.

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