John Chen would like to see BlackBerry experience on iOS and Android

By Adam Zeis on 20 Dec 2013 08:41 am EST

During todays earnings call, BlackBerry CEO John Chen was brutally honest. He dropped word of a new device coming next year and really didn't hold much back. One thing he did say was that he would like to see the BlackBerry experience on Android and iOS. This most likely isn't something we'd see in the very near future, nor was their much clarity on what that exactly could mean, but it's an interesting idea to say the least. Mr. Chen stated that he knows it's not without challenges however, but that the biggest thing about BlackBerry is that it's not only known for security, but also productivity.

 What say you? Sound off in the comments!

Topics: BBRY Apps

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

John Chen would like to see BlackBerry experience on iOS and Android


It was a silly question and he was just being nice.

You can't run BB10 OS on Android and iOS.

You would be able to run Android and iOS on BB10 OS. But why would you?

If there was any sense to be gleaned, it might be that he sees other manufacturers adopting BB10 - which gets them most Android apps.

Have you actually used Android and iOS? Compared to BB10 they're also rans. Android on Samsung at least is a mess. And iOS still can't really do two things at once. Anyone with BB10 on their phone is using BB10 and dismissing the rest as junk.

I'm still trying to figure out what Blackberry could offer me that Android doesn't already have or has had for years. "Also rans" LOL

Samsung is not real Android. Nexus is real Android.

Probably security and efficiency (in productivity) which does not exist on Android. Yes, BlackBerry 10 lacks apps compared to Android but the new Android app player allows Android apps to run better on BlackBerry 10 than actual Android devices.

I was thinking more along the lines of features. So basically, all BB has to offer is better security. Ok.

Which apps run better on BB than on a nexus 5 or G2?


You won't be saying "All" if your identity is stolen or your bank account hacked.

Security is everything. It's just that most consumers haven't yet suffered the consequences of not having security.

You need to understand that most likely in his world like many others, he's more worried about how many Candy Crush levels he can pass. Security means little to these people.

I won't even get into how much better an OS BB10 is. I know I have an S4 and a 5s in the house.

Posted via CB10

you should also point out that unless you have a BES server, you're not getting any more security than you would with an Android device.

Where does everyone get this idea from? Android had 97% of known malware in 2013 or something stupid like that. iOS was 2.5% and blackberry was negligible

That can be like comparing the malware that tries to infect Windows PC's versus Apple PC's. For the most part, malware creators target the largest audience. That's why people tend to think that Apple computers are more secure than Windows counterparts. It's a bit of a fallacy. It's not that it's necessarily more secure, it's just that not as many care. Android versus the rest is the same way since more people use Android than any other mobile smartphone OS.

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

My Nexus 7 was enough to convince me I don't want android. It's terrible. I much prefer windows 8.1. I think it even beats my BlackBerry Z10 in terms of use. I want bbm on windows phone!

Posted via CB10

This is fanboy rubbish. BB cannot run Android better than Android itself. Anyone who has run android on BB will tell you different.

A cleaner more intuitive user experience. More security - less viruses. Less data capture from Google. Less fragmentation.

BlackBerrys are just a better user experience all round.

But hey, carry on with your Android - we really don't care one way or the other. You're the one on a BlackBerry blog site.

I can get all that with nexus devices already. I've never met a single Android user who has ever gotten a virus...the only way I know they exist is from nerd media. As long as you use the official market, chances of a virus are close to zero.

I apologize for intruding on your BB reality distortion bubble. I will return you to your regularly scheduled propaganda, heh heh.

I just spent two weeks investigating and fixing iPhone and Android devices.

I'm not objective obviously, but I can honestly say that having put aside the money to buy an Android tablet I veered away dramatically when I actually started trying to use one. (I'd intended on buying the new Samsung Note 10.1 2014 but the user interface is incomprehensible - even for Android trained store staff).

I ended up buying the latest iPad. But have found it to be atrocious. You can't run two things at once. You can't access the file system, and most configuration settings are simply not comprehensive enough. You can download lots of apps but only if you sign up to Apples mind removal scheme.

The truth is that if you take away the app advantage of Android and iPhone you're left with dross.

I can only assume you haven't used or investigated say the latest Z30. It's light years better than the competition. When BlackBerry finally releases 10.2.1 for the Z30 it will hands down be the best handset on the market.

And yes. I'm in a reality distortion bubble. Just like you. Only I'd guess my distorted reality is a lot more user friendly than yours.

Blah, blah, blah, blah. "Take away the app(lications)..." Blah, Blah, Blah... While, you bang emails... Doctors are using iPad to read x-rays and Architects are using Android to design high-rise buildings. But circle-jerk away while you send those emails.

I was so excited the other day, I was on my iPad Air, watching a video and went to "multitasking" mode and the video kept playing even while it was halfway off the screen! I scrolled over to other apps and the audio kept playing, which mde me think I'd still be hearing the audio while I switched to Chrome to surf the web and... nope... as soon as the browser was foregrounded the audio stopped.

So, I don't want BB10 running on iOS or Android. I want it the other way around.

There is a giant need for Blackberry Email on Android. I made the move recently and although there is a lot to like about Android, the exchange email experience is very weak and frustrating. This would be a killer app on Android and I would gladly pay for it.

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

I think he will license BB10 to third parties, like LG, and maybe even HTC.

A keyboard app only makes sense on Android, unless Apple opens up the keyboard API, which is not going to happen.

Posted via CB10

Their is an SDK that allows developers to create their own keyboards for iOS, but they are limited to only their own application, it will not change the system keyboard, only the keyboard in their application. Google and some other third parties already use custom keyboards in their apps on iOS.

Yeah, that's a sexy phone. I have picked it up a few times and thought the same. Why didn't BlackBerry make THIS phone?!

Ah the keyboard is maybe one of the three best things about BB10. Ive used I think every keyboard. I was always partial to IOS's. WP8 was next then Android. And when I say Android that means one of the about 30 keyboards I tried from the Android Market (yes including Swiftkey). For the record, BB10's keyboard KILLS the others. Not even close. I don't know what they did but if you could get that keyboard to Android it would do incredibly well

I hate when people make this comment. The Swiftkey parts of BB10's keyboard are definitely good, but what makes the keyboard amazing is the things that BlackBerry added to it, like the swiping (not just up, but deleting words and changing keyboards as well), the multi language switching in sentences, the way in which it learns words, etc. Those are the things that make the keyboard better than every other keyboard!

Well, to take Chen's road and be brutally honest.. they'd have to have a better showing than the roll out of BBM on Android and iOS.

I think he's looking at it the other way around. He is more focused on software rather then hardware. The whole advantage of Qnx, is it can be easily integrated with other systems, that is why it is big with M2m.

Posted via CB10

Be interesting to see them make a Hub app for Android and iOS - bring the BlackBerry messaging experience to Android and iOS.

Posted via CB10

The security, peace of mind and all the other loveliness that I call my BlackBerry. The "experience" on another platform would NOT be good enough for me.

Single finger flickin fun from the best Damn virtual keyboard in existence...the BlackBerry Z30 Everybody!

Supply the candy, let them taste it, get them hooked on it,...

Then convert the sales to real BB10 devices. Sounds like a plan.

My name is Prem, I'm using BBM ... from my QuZe10 ...whatarhyme...

While I agree BlackBerry Travel is great, it's just World mate which is already available for Android and iOS.

Posted via CB10

I fully expect a BlackBerry Android device, running BlackBerry security or something like that. Kind of like Samsung's KNOX implementation.

I guess he is planning to create a complete bb-launcher for android - that is clever if you think BlackBerry as a software company (and it might be a trojan horse) fighting against competitors as samsung knox etc.

Posted via CB10

I think he meant BlackBerry experience through BBM, such as pre-loaded installs perhaps?

Posted via CB10

There is no BlackBerry experience on Android or IOS. The BlackBerry experience is on a BlackBerry device. When it ceases to be on a BlackBerry device then it is no longer BlackBerry or an experience...

So why the fuck would I buy some half assed malformed clone? I might as well go ahead and buy an Android device in that case, which is exactly what I wanted to avoid when I decided to choose BlackBerry. Same goes for IOS and Apple.

Cartman says: Screw you guys I'm going home!

This comment isn't targeted to you though. It's targeted to the former BBOS users that left for Android and iOS that don't know how beautiful the BB10 experience is. Show them with some apps, and also provide them access to all their Android apps on BB10 and some of those users would switch.

Can Android run on top of QNX? And could they approach manufacturers of Android-based smartphones to move over to that kind of environment?

The guys was just answering a question. I did not get the feelings this was one of his top priorities.
They asked whether they would work on bringing the blackberry experience to Android and IOS and he just said he would like to. In my opinion he was just trying to apeace the investors. I will not hold my breath on that one

Posted via CB10

Wow, forums are buzzing again. CB10 seems a bit slower to load...

My name is Prem, I'm using BBM ... from my QuZe10 ...whatarhyme...

BlackBerry HUB For ANDROID

I was thinking the same thing a few days ago when a non techie friend of mine saw how the hub worked with just a swipe and asked if he could get an app for that! Lol I think it would be a good idea if that was possible, blackberry could monetize it if they wanted to. Not sure how it would be realized but I'm sure some smart developer could develop BlackBerry HUB For ANDROID

Posted via CB10

I'd consider an iPhone if I could dual boot between iOS and BB10. Even if I had to load the boatloader and install the OS myself. Having the option is great, right?

Posted via CB10

I can see other BlackBerry apps like Travel, Hub, and Protect being sold on other platforms, and doing stuff like implementing the BB10 keyboard while in BBM on other platforms. This would be an added revenue stream (perhaps Travel and Protect could be dirt cheap monthly subscription apps for since a service is being provided) from a user base insisting on not using a BB. It could also be something to market off of - free on BlackBerry and/or more capabilities - "...make the switch and get the full BlackBerry experience...".

I wonder how long they will wait before they start a new marketing campaign now that they have a new leader for that part of the company.

Posted via CB10

License BB10 to third parties, like LG, Sony & HTC for example is a good idea IMO. But before that happens I believe Chen wants to go at it on its own, now that all the negativity is somewhat gone, the for sale sign is down for good, and they now have shown vision and motivation to bush BB10 into as many peoples hands as possible.


Posted via CB10

We had a meeting with a BlackBerry salesperson yesterday. She alluded to this, but the inpression she gave was a shared screen. Also on laptops.

How about the other way around.
The Q10 is a solid piece of hardware. I would love to see Android OS on it!
Or better yet a BlackBerry designed slider with Android OS!

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

I think john chens corporate strategy may be based mostly on my collection of posts in crackberry and blackberry forums.

Posted via CB10

So you're saying Chen's strategy is... incongruent? ;-)

Sorry, couldn't resist.

Posted via CB10

Ok sounds crazy but he has something here. Imagine BlackBerry security and keyboard (virtual and physical ) and traces of BlackBerry in all devices.

Now with that said. Who really is still the king of smart phones.

Posted via CB10

Why would you want horrible android on a Q10 get out of here... android and iphones may have sales but We like blackberry because they are nothing like android or ios!

Posted via CB10

Youssef now you are really scaring me!Even my Q10 is taking long to open apps because of your ranting!!

Incurable Q10 Syndrome

He may be talking about BALANCE in the enterprise space. This would be a secure, work based portion of any handset. At this time balance only works on BB10 handsets. I can't see why this could not be offered to other OS's. I am not a programmer but you could have a version of BB10 that resides on iOS or Android and is secure.

Posted via CB10

Well, there are the BES10 client and Secure Workspace client apps in the Google Play and iTunes app stores.. So maybe he is talking about opening them up so that a BES10 infrastructure isn't needed for them to work?

That would bring a BB experince for email, calendar, contacts, etc to Android and iOS. And to be honest, compared to TouchWiz on Samsung, these apps are way better and can add the BB productivity for non-BB OS users.

Yah. That must be what he means. He is enterprise oriented and sending up the BB experience through BB balance to BYOB phones could be v smart. Have hub, calender remember travel and other integrated apps working together as well as they do would have the added benefit of making people remember BB strength not the recent let-downs ... The user con compare the "Apple way" with BB experience or the Android mess with the BB experience. The users next phone might be BB or both sides .... a BB phone

Buy a BLACKBERRY if you want the features that come with blackberry. Don't buy android to get blackberry features on it. So stupid! #bbkeepitexlusive

Posted via CB10

Sounds to me like he want to add things like the blackberry keyboard, the security maybe the hub and other such experiences to the android and ios. Part of his whole software push. think about having blackberry travel, protect or even the upcoming picture lock.

So then there's no point of having a blackberry. android could make a phone that looks like the q10 and bam! Nore more sales.

Posted via CB10

How about just focusing on what BlackBerry 10 is and making it better with better hardware specs.

Posted via CB10

Exactly! Only gimmicks make huge sales! Because there's a lot of stupid people that buy ipads over laptops for there school work or people that buy android for the huge screen! Gimmicks. Black berry makes it easier to make phone calls check texts emails and Callender on the go. Now take that and throw it in android.. makes no sense that MEANS JOHN CHEN GIVES UP ON HARDWARE. Means he is joing the dark side to make money the evil way rather then make blackberry more noticibal and everywhere like on TV and movies. He will just go the easy way out and throw it all on android. Makes me sick

Posted via CB10

I think you woke up and sleep-walked to the toilet!Go back to bed and goodnight!

Incurable Q10 Syndrome

IOS who knows what apple would allow. But a blackberry version of android would fit that description

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

I hope he sticks to the core of BlackBerry. Too many changes will leave us with nothing like the BlackBerry devices that we have loved and depended on. Should b interesting. I just want a BB10 device that is heavily marketed, better carrier support, fast US software updates and apps that will make other users jump ship to BB10. Seriously.

BB Uniq BB Bold -Z10

I am not sure what he means. But bb10 is now so close to integration with android yet there is no clarity on the future of this. Why? The next release of 10.2.1 could have port to Google Play... this would have been a killer strategy if done right. are we to assume that perhaps 10.5 or bb11 would have integration with both android and IOS. If so, that would be phenomenal. But I doubt it is viable? I mean why?

Posted via CB10

its mean no more native apps if in next os realise will be google play! and than latter u will get Android instead BB10!!!

They could bring the hub over and make it a paid app. I would have no problem with that.

Posted via CB10

Easy folks think about it - it was the blackberry experience he was talking about. Hub navigation, a productivity suite, not the bb10 OS.

Posted via CB10

I hope he doesn't mean Hub, Flow, etc. That's really the only thing bb10 has left to separate itself from everything else. Bbm is cross-platform, they are getting bbm voice, video, & channels soon. What we will have left?

Posted via CB10

Well, once you've got the BB PIM suite on Android, including the Hub, all packaged in a nice launcher, then most people wouldn't buy a BlackBerry which will always have lower specs or a higher price tag.

Just as Android is used on many devices (Samsung, HTC, Droid, etc.) BlackBerry should sell there software to other device makers or consider making it open source.

They could bring some productivity aspects of bb10 over like the hub and charge for it.

Like he said BlackBerry is a productivity and security company. If you want the full package of both you still need bb10.

Posted via CB10

Personally, I'd prefer to have the Blackberry experience back on my Playbooks before they focus on devices they didn't even sell in the first place; whatever this undefined "experience" is.

How does this positioning statement sound?

Introducing the safest way to run Android: BlackBerry 10. Thanks to BlackBerry's rock solid Android player you can finally run all your favourite apps with the military grade security nobody can touch. BB10 -- the evolution of Android.


They should have played thus up from the beginning. It's an obvious strategy. You get apps plus security. That s what everyone wants. The rival OS's only deliver on one point.

This also positions BB10 as the only safe way to run Android. It has elements of the classic Tylenol ad campaign -- For everyone who shouldn't take Aspirin (because it's hard on your stomach) soon Tylenol outsold Aspirin.

Posted via CB10

I'm not quite sure if this means possible BlackBerry devices running iOS or Android, but if that's the case then I think it's a horrible idea. The whole reason I got a Z10 is because I can't stand the other OSs out there. I think Android interface is ugly as hell, iOS is pretty but they are both crap OSs from a tech standpoint.
If they're talking about leasing BB10 to other manufacturers, I would tread very carefully. If a company releases a piece of s*it device with crappy hardware running BB10, it will only further damage BlackBerry's reputation.
I love my Z10. My husband keeps bringing home stories of co-workers - once they've actually seen a Z10 - being positively green with envy.
BlackBerry Marketing failed utterly. End of story.

Posted via CB10

I think what he said is just meant to help marketing BlackBerry's EMM solution to clients who want to be able to manage iOS and Android devices, providing a.k.a. the BlackBerry experience on iOS and Android platforms. It's not so much porting BlackBerry experience over to those devices than enabling deep cross-platform integration under BlackBerry's EMM solution. But marketing-wise speaking, the former is what you say to enterprise clients who are familiar with the BlackBerry experience. Technically, the product is probably just going to be some kind of Secure Work Space (SWS) on steroid for iOS and Android. And of course, secure messaging with BBM. We have to read Chen's message around the BlackBerry's renewed focus on enterprise services.

Unlike some log headed financial analysts who have no idea of how technically the BlackBerry devices are an integral and critical part of BlackBerry's entire secure platform, Chen has on several occasions clearly stated to the effect that BlackBerry would be nothing without its handset. Even if the handset business continues to be a money loser for BlackBerry, it's absolutely critical that BlackBerry maintains that business in order to retain its competitive advantage in the wider businesses that it engages. We can pretty much rest assured that we can continue to enjoy the unique BB10 devices or their next better incarnations for the foreseeable future, even at the expense of BlackBerry's profit margin, that is, when profit margin returns. :)

BlackBerry10 Launcher for Android? .... So Android users pretty much get the BlackBerry10 feel and hopefully is enough to convince them to switch? Just a guess. I've got a Nexus 7 and had a Nexus 5 to play around for a week. I would have killed to have the BlackBerry 10 keyboard on them.

May be he was being sarcastic.. may be challenging android and ios for giving an experience par with BB10.. a kind of potshot at them keeping the BlackBerry 10 experience as a benchmark.. :D

Posted via CB10

BlackBerry experience on other devices is smart and actually previously done a decade ago..
It was called blackberry Connect and was avail on Nokia and Windows phones.

Posted via CB10

Huh? In what world would Apple install BB10 on a IPhone, Itouch, iPad? Confused by that statement.

I don't think BlackBerry should try so hard to be on android. What incentive would be there for people to buy BlackBerries if every feature is available on another platform? I'm sure BlackBerry cannot make a living off selling apps.

Posted via CB10 on my Q10 running

How about taking Cascades cross platform? That BlackBerry "experience" being cross platform could benefit BlackBerry.

Posted via CB10

BBM went cross platform, BES managing Android and iOS phones - these are putting Blackberry Experience on iOS and Android... at least that is my interpretation of his words

Posted via CB10

Biggest mistake for BB was ANDROID SUPPORT its f*cked everything up! its crazy to want 100 of thousand ported shit apps! soon will be only BB hardware and android!

I agree with you. Instead of promoting Native apps and a unified BlackBerry 10 experience, you had Android apps (all the garbage) making BlackBerry 10 feel clunky. Who ever suggested Android support should be fired!

It makes sense if they want to get out of the devices market. License it out to Google and Apple and that would allow consumers the choice. It's likely the only way I would ever voluntarily choose either of those company's phones.

Posted via CB10

How about bringing a payments solution to BlackBerry 10?? For the most secure mobile device on the platform, I am shocked there is no finance apps like (PayPal Here, or Square). All the small business people on BlackBerry could really benefit!

Talk about priorities...

Why can not BlackBerry bridge be made available for iPadSee and android tablets? At least for android this should simple? Make BlackBerry devices work on IOS and android.

Posted via CB10

This is already happening. BBM for Android and iPhone have the BlackBerry experience (as much as they can achieve on those OS's). This is a brilliant way for people to learn and understand the BlackBerry UI.

Posted via CB10

Like. It's not BlackBerry hardware or OS 10 that matters, but the Blackberry experience, which means insane levels of productivity on the go.

Posted via CB10

I hear that Blackberry is championing this thing Called Unity where if you were to develop an app for Blackberry it will automatically be able to be used on both Android and iOS at the same time. This is particularly targeting games so that people can play multi-player games cross platform.

Perhaps this is what he means. :-)

Anyone remember BlackBerry Connect? a BB secure instance on Symbian and Palm OS? We were supposed to have one for iOS in 2008 but top execs nixed it. Pre-dates Good, MobileIron, AirWatch container approaches.