Beleagured RIM continues to suffer the slow torture of death by a thousand cuts: Google is dropping support for its native Gmail app for BlackBerry. Announced in a Google Apps blog post entitled, fittingly enough, "Deprecation of Gmail App for BlackBerry", Google will cease supporting the native BlackBerry Gmail app on November …
It's how I check my gmail these days. Why Google? If they kill Google Maps I expect an uproar to follow. Ok, I hope it will...
Could never load it anyway...
A couple of times I've told customers "just load the Gmail program on your phone" because it always worked on Nokias. However, the last couple of times I've tried to load it onto Blackberrys, it loads a little then says "APN is not specified" and goes no further.
I could never find a solution on Google. (Perhaps it was a Telstra issue.)
I left those Blackberry owners to ferment and access Gmail via the browser instead.
RIM might have its problems but...
at least they didn't use " beleaguered, struggling, troubled" twice in consecutive paragraphs while over-trying to be a smartass.
As for the app - RIM have the option of discussing with Google taking that code into RIMs in house app development team - just like their Facebook and Twitter app. More likely though the decision is linked to the easier setup process to get gmail into the main Message app reducing demand for the separate app.
If you didn't find that one-extra-blow-per-paragraph sequence very entertaining, you're reading the wrong web site.
Not the end of the world...
Previously I would have seen this as a big problem - but the BB Gmail app has been feeling more and more geriatric of late. No priority inbox, no way to move mails to folders, no functionality beyond being able to read emails, basically.
Gmail used to be horrible on the blackberry browser, but I tried it today and it's now pretty usable. The downside is that you don't get a notification light flashing when you get new mails like you do with the app, but that's not a major problem for me. I can see that it would be for some people (I only use Gmail for personal emails that don't need to be answered promptly, rather than anything critical to getting things done in the day).
I will be sad if RIM does get killed off - I can touch type on a Bold keyboard, don't think I'd be able to manage that on a touchscreen phone like everyone is meant to love these days...
Simply trying to kill off the competition to Android? Does anyone know if that raises legal flags or is it a fair business tactic?
Because it's already in BIS?
I don't really see the point of the gmail app.
Gmail is supported by BIS, along with a bunch of it's extra features.
I used to use the app, then native BIS support came along, and I switched to that.
In summary: meh.
(I'm sure someone will point out some 'must have' feature, or talk about BES users who want to get their personal gmail, but still, meh.)
Wasn't good anyway
Connecting the Blackberry mail client to Gmail is a far better experience than using the Gmail app anyway. It's no great loss.
Only last week I did an upgrade of my wife's BB Torch, and GMail app died - it would not log on - eiher "No Internet connection" or "Unknown error, please try later".
In the end I had to delete the App and re-install - Fine
That option's gone post 22nd November.
Native Android Apps on Blackberry
future versions of the Playbook and Blackberry OS may look to be supporting Android applications natively so you can just download the Android Gmail app if you are so inclined.
Dropped app in favour of enhanced GMail via BIS
The GMail app was always a bit of a kludge; as other commentards have pointed out Google & RIM have put their efforts in to enhancing the GMail via BIS offering. I have multiple GMail accounts loaded on my Blackberry along with my work BES/Exchange mailbox and a Hotmail account. The GMail/BIS connector not only supports almost-real-time 2-way mail sync but has 2-way support for GMail contact sync and 2-way support for google calendar sync. No extra apps required, all handled by the BIS infrastruture (assuming some numpty in Slough doesn't bring the whole shebang down again of course).
Integrates properly in to the Blackberry UI as well so I can view the amalgamated mailbox, calendar or contact feed or pull each one out individually and definitely an underrated and little-known bonus of Blackberry over iPhone in particular.
But still, the half-arsed app has been dropped. Woe is me etc.