The Apps Woes of BlackBerry
When it comes to mobile applications, especially in case of a new mobile OS, users always face the problem of choice. When the first BB10 devices were launched in the UK and Canada, the press release mentioned there would be literally thousands of apps in the new and improved BlackBerry World. Not many of us believe everything that a company spokesperson says in press releases, as we have often seen such claims fall short. So I too took the claims with a pinch of salt, and most unfortunately it seems that the current mobile application for BB10 available in BlackBerry World ignore many key apps which are supported by the competing Android and iPhone/iOS platforms.
First the Good News
I will first discuss the good news. For the casual smartphone user, such as me, the BlackBerry apps store has Angry Birds Star Wars. Though no other version of Rovio’s iconic game is currently available for BB10, I am relatively confident that it’s just a matter of time before that need is met. The BB10 also features a new BB Messenger with sleeker looks and a responsive UI, which is in-built into the phone, but sadly no WhatsApp for the new BlackBerry yet. Other communication apps available for BB10 included Trufone and the evergreen Google Talk. I did look for Skype, but unfortunately, I did not find it, which is a pity but still not a deal breaker, at least for me.
Another application, which caught my eye, was the ESPN Score Center along with the Score Mobile so that you and I can follow the games of our choice even if we are chained to our desk. Other notable mentions include Flixster, Wunderlist 2 and the New York Times app for those news buffs out there. A third party app from Pandora, by the name, Apollo is also available and I’m sure there are many more 3rd party apps in BlackBerry World, with a lot more coming, however, there is still a lot more to be desired. In case you enjoy wireless streaming of radio, the new BB 10 contains the TuneIn Radio application too.
The Not So Good Stuff
Firstly, I would like to point out that mobile application discovery on BlackBerry World using a BB10 device is still as bad as it was with the Playbook. I sincerely hope that the good folks at the development center wise up to this and fast before the whole company goes the Playbook way (i.e. fails). The powers that be have made it evident that BB10 is their make or break OS, which was a really long time coming, I doubt that even the most ardent admirer of BlackBerry, will stick around for long unless things change drastically. Also I am sure that most users loathe learning a new app for doing old things, so many old apps need to be added to the store. Some of the apps I wish they would add to the store are Instagram, Google Voice, Temple Run, more Angry Birds (please include all available ones and more if possible), apps for major Banks, as well as more Music service and Travel service apps.
BB 10 is best defined as the future of the BlackBerry devices, however, the company behind it all is just out of time. They need to act fast and update their existing App collection before even dreaming about their golden days. The current situation also provides an unprecedented opportunity for an offshore Software Development Company to introduce their third party apps and register it on the BB store. Developing Mobile solutions is a competitive business and like any business it thrives on competition as well as on the ability to quickly identify a “need” in the current market and fulfill it before the competition. The future dynamic of the mobile world currently hangs in the balance, I just hope BB does not slip and fall leaving Apple to gather all the spoils alone.
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