RIM Offering BlackBerry Push Service To All BlackBerry Developers

By Bla1ze on 17 Mar 2010 11:03 am EDT
RIM Offering BlackBerry Push Service To All BlackBerry Developers

Back during the BlackBerry Developers Conference last year, Research In Motion made the announcement that the BlackBerry Push APIs would be available to all developers for free within the first half of 2010. In keeping with their promise, Research In Motion has made available today two levels of push services. 

  • BlackBerry Push Essentials - is a free service that developers can incorporate into their applications and allows them to push content to their customers with unparalleled immediacy.
  • BlackBerry Push Plus - which has a free tier and paid tiers, provides developers with notification that their push has been delivered. If a content provider needs to get information to someone, they can tell if the target device has received the push. 

While this is great news for developers, it's also great news for end users. Many applications out there already make use of push services. But previously, those services cost quite a bit for developers to implement into applications. Now with two service offerings being available to developers for either free or on a paid basis we should see plenty more apps delivering content. With all this push goodness happening, makes me wonder how much more use it's going to see in later OS'.

Reader comments

RIM Offering BlackBerry Push Service To All BlackBerry Developers


They already do....$29.99 and $45.99 (or whatever the BES plan is).

There should be no way for them to charge for this. All this is is more data along the pipe, right?

I wonder how quick Ubertwitter (and others) will be to incorporate this, if they choose to. Imagine Uber with Push notification, rather than refreshing on device.....

Would make the RIM Twitter client unnecessary (in my book).

Of course this is great news for everyone. Except one group of audience who use BlackBerry smartphones: those not using a data plan. In fact this group is made of so many different individuals that they could be put into subgroups as follows:

a) using BlackBerry as a PDA only device (WiFi for data).
b) paying for an e-mail only plan (no Internet data).
c) not being able to subscribe for a data plan (carrier limitation).
d) interested in the Java platform for development on a limited budget.

If every application will utilize the BlackBerry Push API, that means all data will go through BlackBerry servers, which in return requires a BlackBerry data plan. I'm probably going to pack my things right now and look for another platform. Thank you RIM.

Oh come on....really????

I would really like to know what percentage of BB's are being used without a dataplan. I just can't see it being that high.

a significant one.

One market you have forgotten is the retail market. While small, it is still there. I am one of those who bought their BlackBerry retail. Of course a carrier branded BlackBerry, but one that didn't require me to activate a data plan and one that was acquired legally and from a real store not eBay.

Also, many can due to financial reasons simply not afford a BlackBerry. Those people could still make use of a BlackBerry, it's not like a BlackBerry is unusable without a data plan. In fact it's perfectly usable to the point that the only real missing features compared to a BlackBerry with proper data plan is e-mail. Most other features including the use of the native browser via the carrier network are possible to enable using custom Service Book records. Now of course a BlackBerry without e-mail sounds and is stupid, but trust me there are quite many who can do perfectly fine without checking their e-mail on the go. Of course even this functionality can be enabled by using third party software such as AstraSync or Funambol. While neither will provide push e-mail, it's much better than nothing.

If it was of your interest, I have a BlackBerry Storm2. Just my two cents.

If you own a Storm2 with a phone plan, then you are one smooth talker, or know someone on the inside. Because buying retail or not, VZW requires data/email (BIS/BES for BB) on all 3G smartphones, ESPECIALLY those with wifi. Only way not to have the plan, is to have a BB/smartphone that came out before Nov 08, and even then it's a fight.

have thought there would be. No, I am not being racist or anything, though it heavily seems like you have fixed your view to what happens in the States instead of what happens around the Globe everywhere including and outside the States.

CDMA is problematic for many reasons, but GSM networks are much easier to work with. I live in Finland and all I really need to do is to pop in a SIM card in any device I like to use, no one will ever come to me and tell me I need to sign up for a data plan.

I love my BlackBerry as it is now and many third party applications provide WiFi support, which allow me to stay connected without a data plan. As much as I would like to use some native RIM apps like Facebook, I simply can't due to them utilizing the Push API and requiring a BlackBerry data plan (even though technically there is nothing restricting this functionality, it's purely a business thing).

Now if RIM decides to push this API to developers (pun intended) and developers will start adopting it into their applications, that will mean a decreasing amount of applications available for people like me. It's a pity, because I really like the PDA functionality my BlackBerry provides that no other smartphone can provide me (and paired with free services like mIQ from Best Buy Mobile, I have OTA contacts, calendar and media sync).

I also like BlackBerry smartphones for their build quality (although this seems to have decreased a bit lately). Lastly, SurePress for instance is something no other smartphone manufacturer has and I have to say it is what made me gain interest in touch screen devices. I can use an iPhone for instance and while it's a great smartphone too, I just can't feel comfortable without the "click screen". Also, on traditional BlackBerry smartphones the QWERTY keyboard is just so much more better than the rest. Trackball/trackpad navigation is also much better than D-pad solutions that Nokia use for instance.

So to me a BlackBerry is not only "something that needs a BlackBerry data plan". To me it's a versatile and powerful smartphone. Also being a developer myself I really like being able to utilize my Java programming skills without the need to learn a new (proprietary) API.

- afropoika

Fair enough. You are correct, I was focusing on U.S. carriers. Primarily, in this case, because I was led to believe (obviously incorrectly) that the Storm2 was only cdma and only on VZW. (But I'll be the first to admit, that I probably assume my own location, in many other instances as well.)

That said, in the states, even on GSM networks, you must have a plan. The carriers here can tell what phone you have your sim card in.

If other countries do things different, than I stand corrected. My apologies.

All carriers are requiring users to add on BIS or BES now. So the vast majority of people who don't have one or the other, are people who are grandfathered in on pretty old BBs (which in 95-100% of cases won't include those with Wifi). And my guess is, those old BBs won't be all that compatible with most of the apps that will have Push.

That aside, my guess is, is that those apps that may have Push, generally required BIS/BES anyways. Have fun with your OTHER platform, which every carrier will force a data/email plan on as well.

It's great news and I feel that many people, even analysts that watch the smartphone sector, still don't understand the importance of push technology. Getting content other than e-mail delivered as it happens is going to be a big attraction. While many think smartphones are all about browsing, I believe RIM has it right in the way they keep growing the ability to communicate.