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RIM opens its second BlackBerry apps lab in South Africa

SA
By James Richardson on 15 Nov 2012 11:32 am EST
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We reported just last month about the new porting lab that RIM had opened here in the UK which I popped along to check out. As I said then, they were planning to open further app labs in other countries and today sees the grand opening of the second BlackBerry apps lab in South Africa.

Although we now know that RIM is to officially announce BlackBerry 10 at the end of January, this new lab in South Africa isn't just about the new platform. With BlackBerry 7 doing so well in the region the lab is just as much about helping devs get apps up and running on BB7 as well as the PlayBook OS. Clearly BB10 support will be there too but with BB7 devices doing so well in Africa that may well be where they money is to be made in the near future for developers?

Nice job RIM - keep it up! You can catch the full press release below.


Research In Motion (RIM), the maker of BlackBerry® smartphones and BlackBerry® PlayBookTM tablets today announced the opening of its second BlackBerry® apps lab in South Africa. The new lab is based in Cape Town and follows on the launch of the BlackBerry apps lab at the University of Pretoria (UP), a BlackBerry Authorised Academic Centre, in May this year.

"Cape Town is a key innovation hub, and a natural site for RIM's second BlackBerry apps lab in South Africa," said Alexandra Zagury, MD for South Africa and Southern Africa at RIM. "We are now looking forward to fostering mobile innovation in the Western Cape and helping to grow South Africa's next wave of mobile app developers. Our investment in this lab is a signal of our commitment to supporting South Africa's thriving BlackBerry developer ecosystem."

The aim of the BlackBerry apps labs is to help accelerate mobile application development in South Africa, thereby creating new economic opportunities and jobs in the mobile space, and to support the larger context and objectives of the South African Department of Communications' (DOC) eSkills Institute. The labs provide local developers, including students, start-ups, entrepreneurs and others, with access to resources in development, marketing, sales and training to help them expand their ideas and business opportunities.

According to Blessing Mahlalela, a student at UP and a developer, the BlackBerry apps lab is every developer's dream. "RIM has eliminated the cost that my startup company would have incurred by providing resources such as the latest BlackBerry devices for testing and high performance development machines," said Mahlalela. Fellow UP student, Leon van Dyk added, "My programming abilities for the BlackBerry platform have increased monumentally - and so has my interests in mobile development as a career choice."

RIM will work with developers at the Cape Town lab to create local and regionally relevant applications for BlackBerry smartphones and the BlackBerry PlayBook, as well as for devices running the upcoming BlackBerry® 10 platform. The initiative is expected to help create locally relevant apps, new skills and job opportunities for graduates, and new revenue streams for developers.

The BlackBerry apps labs form part of RIM's extensive developer programme that spans Africa and includes facilities in key innovation hubs in Nigeria, Kenya, and Egypt. RIM has been working with 118 universities, colleges and schools across Africa through the BlackBerry Academic Program to provide institutions with course materials and content to teach and educate students on mobile application development.

22 comments

Balti43

I feel so honored to be the first comment. All of my hard work and dedication has paid off. Getting the top comment has been a dream of mine for many years, and I would like to thank those who have helped me along the way. First and foremost I would like to thank God for giving me this opportunity. Next I would like to thank my parents. I want to thank my friend, for being really skinny and always there for me. I would also like to thank my pet tadpole for surviving against all odds for over a week. Next I would like to thank the squirrel that lives in my backyard for climbing trees because that gives me inspiration that I need to get through the day. This is a special moment in my life and I would like to thank any of my unmentioned friends and family that have helped me along the way. This moment will be a moment that i will never forget. I just remmembered a few other people I would like to thank; Facebook, the fish I caught in the third grade, my light in my room because I wouldn’t be able to see the keyboard without it, the internet for letting me go on facebook, my house because without it I would be homeless, and last but not least I would like to thank all the people out there that actually took time out of their day to read this. I cannot stress how much of a big deal to me this is. I have been trying to be the first comment on a post for years, but that has not been possible until this amazing day. Hopefully my good luck will continue, but this is undoubtedly a rare occasion. If you asked me how I did this, I would say, you can achieve anything u set your mind on. To all the kids out there reading this, I would like to tell them to follow their dreams. Being the top comment is amazing, thank you so much. By the way........ I have no life. and when is arizona getting a blackberry apps lab

sk8er_tor

I'm your biggest fan. May I please get your autograph?

Joe257

That comment just made my day! ROTFL!!!! :D

SDTRMG

Lol that's to funny, as if he wrote that much

SDTRMG

Lol that's to funny, as if he wrote that much

T_C

hahaha you sir/lady are awesome!
This comment just made my day!

Bold_until_Hybrid_Comes

I feel ungrateful now. I get first comment all the time here

BruvvaPete

I laughed out loud. You did forget to thank the word thanks though. Without thanks you wouldn't be able to say thank, thanks or thank you. Thank you, thanks.

Balti43

^ darn! i did forget to thank the word thanks :/

chiiikee

lmfao =)).... I hang out with funny friends and laugh all the time but i haven't laughed this much in days, Made my day.

birdman_38

"my house because without it I would be homeless"

For some reason that made me lol :D

THBW

An Oscar please for this dedicated BB fan.

rog518za

Thanks RIM, you clearly showing your gratitude to the millions of BB SA fans.

THBW

So who wants to guess on how many Apps, RIM brings to the table with the Jan 30th launch? With one of their executives stating 110K already in the bank, I'm guessing 150K.

And yes, I know the quality vs quantity argument. Just go with it for a change.

Joe257

They'll have a bit more than 120K, but BB10/PlayBook OS will only account for about 20K. Still, for a new product launch, 20K apps will be fantastic!

neteng1000

How many playbook apps do we currently have? We know we will have at least that many at launch. +/- double that amount I'm guessing.

Rootbrian

The more the better. :D
Go go rim!

TonyHove

TIA- Welcome to cape Town!! :)

lnichols

RIM should be sponsoring Rugby teams in SA like they did in Australia and make an app for the Playbook and BB10 that is rugby specific like they did with the MyRugby and MyRugbyTV app. Sponsor the Springboks. Rugby is huge down there!