I am exhausted! Day 2 of the BlackBerry Developer Conference proved to be even more action-packed than Day 1, with the General Session kicking things off early at 8:15am. Thousands tuned into our Live Blog feed, which if you missed and want to take a quick scroll through, is still available for viewing. I'll circle back to the live blog in the next day or two and add in photos/links from the event, but in the meantime you can keep reading after the jump for the highlights:
Official RIM ReleasesBlackBerry Developer Challenge Winners
During the General Session, Kevin Talbot from the BlackBerry Partners Fund got on stage and instead of announcing two Grand Prize Winners, announced THREE Grand Prize winners. The big winners were Poynt, Strands Social Player and Nobex Radio Companion. You can read the press release here, and as soon as I have more time (furiously typing in a hotel room then have to pack and jump on a plane) I'll circle back and feature all of the Grand Prize and Category Winners up here in the blogs.
Other General Session Highlights / Takeaways
A big highlight for me was when Will.I.Am took the stage and showed off his new DipDive application for BlackBerry. Two things here: a) Will.I.Am is the man - totally on another plane of existence and b) the DipDive app they showed off looks amazing. From what I could gather, it utilizes the BlackBerry's native media apps, but times then altogether into a very smooth, and easy-to-use and cool looking interface which allows you to share content easily (in this case back to DipDive.com). If you head on over to DipDive they've actually posted the video from Will.I.Am at the DevCon keynote, so head on over and take a better look.
Also cool of course was the shoutout to CrackBerry.com during the keynote - Rick Segal demoed the MyDJ for BlackBerry app out which is now available for the Bold in beta form right here from CrackBerry.com.
It's an exciting time right now in the BlackBerry World. To me the general takeaway from the General Session was Here's where we have come from and why we have taken the approach we have, Here's what you can do now, and Here are even more new tools so you can blow us away with your creations in the months ahead. Give it a few months...we're going to see some awesome BB apps being released.
Last but not least, it was announced in the General Session that everybody in attendance would receive a free BlackBerry!!! Attendees had the option of choosing between a Pearl Flip, Bold or an IOU voucher for a Verzion Storm when it becomes availble.
Rest of Day Highlights
It took a little while for my fingers to recover from live blogging the Keynote, but soon after the lunch break it was time for our panel discussion on What Makes a Great Mobile Application. Rick Segal, Doug from BBcool, Hayden James from PinStack and myself we're drilled with questions from the over-booked session (close to 200 devs in attendance for this one!). An hour flew by wayyyy tooo fast...it was over before even warming up. But if you're wondering what makes a great mobile app, during the Keynote David Yach, CTO of Software for RIM, gave his version of a Dave's Top List on the subject that nicely sums it up:
What Makes a Killer Mobile Application?
10. Device-specific features
9. Responsive user interface
8. Available Offline
7. Uses network judiisiciously
6. Leverages push
5. Preserves battery life
4. Integrates with the BlackBerry Experience
3. Anticipates user actions
2. One minute work items (Red Light test - be able to complete what you set out to to do in the time it takes to sit at a red light)
1. IT JUST WORKS!
The afternoon wound down with more great sessions and then it was time for the evening festivities to begin!! I can't say enough about the event - considering this is RIM's first BlackBerry Developer Conference, they hit they nailed it! The only bad thing is I'm flying home today and will be missing out on Day 3. So you'll have to click on through to BlackBerryDeveloperConference.com/blogs to stay on top of today's news.
And for all of you waiting for more info on the Storm... I promise you.. it's COMING!