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back to article BlackBerry App World hits 3bn downloads, 27bn more to go

BlackBerry's app store – BlackBerry App World – has notched up 3 billion downloads, parent company RIM boasted in a upbeat developers' blog post. There are now over 90,000 apps in the store, the post says. Apple's App Store has seen 30 billion downloads as of June and has about half-a-million apps on its books, but the 3 …

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jai
Silver badge

Room Escape

Is Room Escape meant to be an analogy to the feeling one has of owning a RIM device and wondering what to do next?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Room Escape

"Is Room Escape meant to be an analogy to the feeling one has of owning a RIM device and wondering what to do next?"

What does that even mean?

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Bronze badge

My employer just scrapped all their Blackberry devices and went Android instead. We got Samsung Galaxy S3's, cheaper deal, and they are being reported easier to use and more intuitive amongst the users (most of whom have iPhones or Android already anyway). And we don't have to deal with the abominations of Blackberry Desktop, outages because all the BB email goes through one central server somewhere (Reg article about a year ago), or anything else that troubled us with BB.

And my boss reckons he can virtually pay for half the Android's initial cost just by selling off the old RIM handsets (which isn't bad, considering how long ago they were bought). Blackberry don't really offer anything special nowadays, not compared to any other smartphone. They got complacent and let the "non-business" phones stroll past them.

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Meh

But if you can claw back so much money from your existing BB kit, doesn't that sort of tell you there is an active market for it?

(No, I don't have a BB phone, but do have a Playbook, which I think is a wonderful piece of kit)

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Pint

Yea, there is an active market over seas in developing countries where "some folks" might like to have secure e-mail communications that are difficult to trace. India? Pakistan? Afghanistan? China? Definitely not USA or Great Britain. There was a time when having a BB meant status symbol of someone with a good paying job of importance. Now, being seen with a BB means you're behind the times. Behind even iPhone 3GS users.

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Anonymous Coward

@Lee Dowling

So your boss hasn't read articles like this one then?

http://m.theregister.co.uk/2012/07/09/android_trustgo_china_mobile/

Snigger snigger snigger.

I bet your CEO would care very much if your company's most important IPR leaked out as a result of carelessness on the part of one of the staff. Afterall, it seems that with Android you're completely dependent on the discipline of the users; not much of a guarantee...

At least with BB you get the option of being able to enforce the necessary discipline.

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Anonymous Coward

@Lee Dowling

Please report back to us in a few months....I predict dissaster!

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Anonymous Coward

Not the US or GB?

I think that if you asked anyone in the US or GB whether they'd be happy for all their email to be read you'd get a universal 'NO'. Given that, why would picking the phone that offers the better email security mean being behind the times?

Following fashion just so as not to be left out isn't exactly clever or cool. Obviously there are companies out there where fashion is OK. But if your company gets wiped out because some important IPR or data leaked through a malware laden jail broken but nonetheless fashionable staff phone, no one important is going to say 'at least it was stylish'. BB might not be great fun, but they are still the most secure option out there.

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Pint

Death Spiral

Yes, RIM got complacent and Heins is deluding himself by begging the world plus dog to wait around for his company to get their act together. Rim became passe quite some time ago. Everyone I know that has one has moved on to Android or iPhone (myself included). Unless the install Windows Phone 8, WebOS, or Android, they won't have any new offerings until next year and by then, far too many people will have moved on to Windows Phone 8, Jelly Bean, an d the new iPhone. Hire some programmers who can get the job done, Heins. Your current crew apparently can't handle it.

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Silver badge

App World ghost town

Blackberry's app world does have apps but it is a fraction of other platforms and it just feels empty. The store attempts to mix the apps grouping them behind promotional banners and so on but usually its the same stuff that was there before just rearranged differently.

The second issue is that the apps that are there frequently cost a lot more than they do on other platforms. e.g. Angry Birds is $4.99, Angry Birds Space is $2.99 etc.

As a platform the Playbook is really quite good. A bit rough around the edges and with annoyances / lack of features. But the lack of apps is the killer problem and I don't see it improving much.

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Unhappy

Re: App World ghost town

Fully agree. As a portable media centre with HDMI it's great for plugging into hotel TV's, but a useful app, such as an RDP client for £15? Sorry, no way.

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Facepalm

How many of those downloads are Enterprise Activation since RIM removed it from the devices as standard? Now businesses with BES are forced to create a Blackberry App World login and download it to the device before they can set the damn thing up.

A whopping 14Kb free App that they chose not to include so they could drive up Blackberry App World accounts and downloads. Sneaky.

We're looking a droid handsets now instead of renewing the 80+ Blackberries we have. Generally our userbase has better personal phones which offer more functionality. Teams sharing dropbox to send in photo's from site, better barcode/QR code scanning, cheaper apps, better browsing of the Intranet servers, even better document viewing/editing etc. - Blackberry have just fell way behind the times.

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Silver badge

I'm proud...

...To report that probably 1000 of those downloads were of my game. Woo! For this, RIM paid the price of a PlayBook that they gave me for my trouble.

Given that I spent maybe 200 hours learning AS3 and OOP in general, that values my time at anywhere between a bit oer $2.50/hour if you go by the initial retail, and a buck an hour if you go by what they can actually sell the PB for.

Still, it did induce me to get off my ass and finally learn OOP, which has been worth quite a bit.

The device itself, as others have mentioned, is brilliant. Shoutcast streaming via flash while playing a game? No problem. Playing a game while looking in a mirror and taking a video of yourself doing it? Ain't no thang. Having your son open 20 apps at a time without it noticing? Common.

No app crashes in weeks and weeks and no OS crashes for as long as I can remember? Normal. I had to restart my buddy's Android tablet twice in an hour. He said it's better now then it was during the last update.

Able to survive being flipped 15 feet across a room when it was on the bed sheets as I tossed them in the air to flatten them? Not a scratch, even on the back surface. Any scratches or software problems from 3 year old sonk's dozens of hours painting and angry birding? Nope. A screen ding from a half-kg spiky glass candle holder dropping dead center on the screen from 10cm, spike first? Nada.

Battery life? Lasts long enough that I'm not sure. Stereo speakers better than any laptop and most TV speakers? Loud enough for a living room? Yep.

Bezel swiping that makes navigating in iOS or Android feel like running in a swamp? Indeed.

It's a shame the launch was so screwed up, and that the level of apps is so low. The hardware and OS are absolutely brilliant, and it's a travesty the rest wasn't up to snuff.

What they -ought- to do is to spin off the PlayBook into a dedicated company, and get it funded to rebrand itself away from the boat anchor that is BB. Judge the platform on its merits rather than its company and it's a winner.

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FAIL

Did anyone see what kind of apps?

Ok... here's a bit to go by from the "Top Rate" apps list on their web site :

"Cute Smart Sexy Fancy BBM Theme - Viewer And Composer"

"Cute Smart Sexy Fancy SMS Text Message Theme - Viewer And Composer"

"Flashlight: 2 for 1 FREE - The REAL Top-Rated Flashlight on App World - Colors - No Time Limits and No Ads!"

"Flashlight Free"

And a crap load of emoticon stuff.

For the top paid apps, it seems that most of it is themes.

There is SO LITTLE premium content on the device that it's worse than pathetic. It was a huge mistake to brag about this. We all used to think there were no apps for the phone. This bragging made some of us look up what actually is available for it and we found "Crap crap and more crap!" but of course, since they let free smut on the store, there's going to be tons of people making free smut apps with ad-sponsering if they can.

They really should have bribed some companies by porting for free for them or added HTML5 based games to the phone. This was just really sad :(

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Silver badge

Re: Did anyone see what kind of apps?

Don't forget the bible apps. For some reason there are huge numbers of them for BB phones - perhaps executives seek succor in the Good Book before difficult meetings.

On the PlayBook developer IRC channel, when we were building applications so we'd qualify for the free PlayBook, we'd joke about getting something submitted, good or not, to make sure we had a 'banker lap' in case we didn't get the real thing done. These were called 'crapplications', and based on the number of calculators and 'Worm' clones available at launch, quite a few other devs had the same idea.

Things are significantly better, but I fear it's too little, too late.

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