Research-In-Motion will square up to Apple, Google and Hewlett-Packard with a tablet that runs apps built for Google's popular Android platform. On Thursday, RIM said it plans to deliver what it called an "app player" for its PlayBook tablet that will provide an environment capable of running Android 2.3 applications. An app …
Wanna bet this is just Alien Dalvik? A company called Myriad Group AG is working on a version of Dalvik that runs on other platforms. They demoed it on n900 and are looking for buyers. Pretty sure RIM just took a license...
Android wins by default
Who is going to bother writing Blackberry apps when it includes an Android app player?
More Than You Might Think
We are, and I know several other firms who are going to as well. There is an advantage to RIM only apps (at least as far as marketing goes) as they are perceived as "business tools", not just 'fun' toys.
I'm not saying one platform is better than another for business, but I am saying certain platforms are perceived by target markets as more business oriented and it would be crazy not to leverage that.
If the device has an android emulator, why not write your app to the emulator? Then you can target your blackberry if you so wish without having to write from scratch to support regular android devices.
Of course I'm assuming the emulator is up to snuff and not some heap of crap that doesn't work properly. That is a distinct possibility of course. Blackberry could port Dalvik and much of the support APIs over QNX or whatever their kernel is because they're open source and get a decent experience.
Kowtowing to Steve are we?
"...the second most populated apps market..."
Hmm, I've never heard of "apps market" as a generic term, did you mean an "app store"?
As far as I am aware, Google are the only ones calling their app store a "market" so that would mean that it's actually the most populated "apps market", being the only one.
one step behind
so it'll always be able to run Android apps that are one version behind the latest android release?
you'll have to wait for RIM to release an update to their app player?
so, why not just get a fully android tablet and not have any restrictions or delays
also, the article seems to suggest you can only buy the android apps through the blackberry store? so they're only going to allow certain apps to be available?
There is a problem
Isn't android 2.3 a phone optimized os while version 3 is optimized for tablets? So they promise version 2.3 compatibility while v 3 will ship/shipped to device partners.
In fact this could be a reason why Google proved Steve Jobs right with their v 3 policy.
This is also a bad decision to begin with. If a person did choose your QNX/Java device, he rejected android way. Just like "GO64" killed C128 (commodore 8 bits) this will really hurt their developer scene. Mobile apps are really complex and if there is a way to ship already developed code, companies won't bother to code for your native platform.
I am also tired of head counting application markets, lots of "apps" are plain junk, html pages packaged.
I think it was more of a numbers game, why program for the c128 when you could program for the c64 and it would run on a c128 as well. It also didn'y help that Commodore kept selling the c64 as well, putting the c128 in a kind of no-mans land between the Amiga and the c64. Acorn had the same problem with there BBC+ range.
Also it seems the emmulator is a "will ship sometime later, maybe june" product.
The OS shouldn't matter
If I'm writing Java apps I really shouldn't give a damn what OS is underneath. Linux, Windows or even QNX. The same holds for Android too - it might be Linux now but if Google wanted they could whip out Linux and shove BSD or QNX in there. In app land the app should be largely ignorant of the OS.
What matters is the APIs. I see no reason that Blackberry could produce an API for Android, or implement Dalvik + Android's APIs in their own device.
I'd add that Blackberry is in a bit of a bind here. Android is becoming dominant. If they force devs to choose between the platform, then many of them will follow the user base. Of course if they implement the same APIs, they may hasten their own problems. Same thing happened with OS/2 when it chose to implement Windows 3.1 support. It seemed like a good idea but probably wasn't in hindsight.
As for Android 3.0, I expect they'll release the source. I would not be surprised if the source has not been released immediately as a combination of factors a) to give partners a lead before a bunch of Chinese OEMs turn up with clones, b) to give their lawyers time to look over the source for violations, c) to fix up any kludges, security holes etc. before exposing the OS to scrutiny, d) to do what they said and merge 2.x / 3.x into one trunk without the hassle of a code drop.
All of these are likely and plausible. I expect the source will turn up and for Google's sake the sooner the better.
HP, you listening?
Or should I say Myriad Group?