RIM's quest for app developers in the wake of PlayBook 2.0

the BlackBerry booth at MWC 2012

RIM held a cozy little developer panel at Mobile World Congress, where VP of Developer Relations, Alec Saunders, got folks from Zinio, Marmalade and Pacemaker to talk about precisely how awesome it was developing for BlackBerry. While most of the conversation was predictably positive, the Q&A with press was a bit more critical. I made sure to voice a few questions that were raised by you guys and fellow CB staffers. 

The biggest issue raised on the developer front, especially since support for Android apps launched in the BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0, is how RIM intends to attract, promote and retain quality developers. Supporting Android introduces a few problems; one that was brought up in the Q&A is piracy. There have apparently been many attempts to submit apps that have been blatantly stolen from other developers.  Luckily, RIM is committing to diligence on this front, and has already caught a couple of shady dealers. Alec said "We don't want the 'wild west' of the Android Market in App World"-- which is reassuring. 

RIM Sweden makes meeting collaboration colorful and awesome with Confetti app for BlackBerry PlayBook


RIM's Sweden branch, previously known as The Astonishing Tribe, has made a big splash at Mobile World Congress 2012. One of two new concepts that they're showing off is called Confetti. It's a simple collaboration app that lets you easily transfer files between BlackBerry PlayBooks with a lot more flair than you'd expect. By mounting a webcam on the cieling, the PlayBooks are recognized, assigned a color, and positioned in relation to one another. Before a meeting starts, there's a casual game of virtual catch that you play by tapping your screen's dot. It shoots a streaming of jagged, funky pixels over to another member, and you keep bumping it around until the meeting is ready to start.

You launch the meeting with the top-down swipe, and now you can get to work. Little bubbles show up around the edge of your screen, each representing someone in the meeting, and they change position as the owner moves around. You can use the system menu to pull in images and documents, which can then be dragged to one of these edge bubbles to transfer the file over the local Wi-Fi network. You can also broadcast the file to the other users by pinch-zooming, or using a special gesture, shunt the image out to a projector. You can still share files directly with other users during this exposition mode by moving two BlackBerry PlayBooks close to one another. gains 500,000 BlackBerry PlayBook users since launching in September 2011


There has been plenty of talk lately surrounding why developers should make their apps available for the BlackBerry PlayBook. While some developers have taken the time to make great apps for the PlayBook, some have not yet done so as they seem to feel the user base is not all that large.

Who to follow from Mobile World Congress



Mobile Nations Special: Mobile World Congress 2012 kickoff


Mobile Nations Special

Phil, Simon, and Alex have splashed down in Barcelona and are ready to assault Mobile World Congress 2012, Mobile Nations style, and bring you back absolutely everything Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, (and even iPhone and iPad if they can find it!). Listen in!