1. wout000's Avatar

    Ever since BB10 got released with the Android Runtime, BlackBerries have been able to run Android apps. While, it was spotty in the beginning and most apps ran either slow or not at all, that has all since been dealt with and tech-savy users are running more and more Android apps on their BlackBerries. Unfortunately running Android apps has to this day been reserved for people willing to get their hands dirty and start sideloading third party app stores, or find individual APK's on the web and downloading them at their own risk. This all will change soon thanks to the Amazon deal.

    BlackBerry recently announced "The Amazon Deal". The deal basically gives BlackBerry access to the entire catalog of the Amazon Android App store and will make sure that the App store is preloaded on all new BlackBerry devices. Gone are the days of searching the web for individual (shady) APK's, gona are the days of sideloading apps to your phone. It's there and it's free to use. While some users are crying out in horror, thinking the native apps will take a backseat due to this, most are happy and can't wait for the bevy of new devices to hit the market preloaded with the Amazon App store. BlackBerry also announced they're closing down their music and video sections in AppWorld, fueling speculation that Amazon services like music and video will become available on BlackBerry devices. Nothing but positive news and I for one hope this deal will be a win-win situation for both parties involved.

    This deal could make some huge waves in the world of Android with consumers and enterprise. As it stands now most businesses with their own apps develop for iOS and Android as these are the 2 most widespread smartphone OS'es. The cheap to expensive range of Android hardware has certainly helped in it's user adoption but it's also one of the pitfalls of Android. I recently visited 3 stores from 3 different local carriers to check out all the Android smartphones for sale. One thing stood out in all 3 of them. There isn't any consistency in the Android OS versions whatsoever. I counted 12 Android 4.1 phones, 27 Android 4.2, 8 Android 4.3 phones and only a handful of Android 4.4 phones.

    OS fragmentation is a real problem for Android. My sister recently bought a smartwatch but found out it wasn't compatible with her 2 month old Android smartphone because it ran OS 4.2.X. The manufacturer hasn't released a new ROM yet for her phone and it's questionable if they ever will. Needless to say she was beyond pi**ed. This is the sort of thing BlackBerry should be leveraging in marketing campaigns. BlackBerries will run the latest Android Runtime with not all but most needed/popular features.

    They can become a big player in the Android landscape if they play their cards right and get the Android apps to behave a smooth as their native apps.
    Consumers can pick up a BlackBerry knowing their Android apps will work, businesses can keep developing for Android and pick up support for BlackBerries in the workforce knowing that their apps will run. As it stands now, most businesses and consumers are quitting BlackBerry for this very reason, because developers are developing for any platform but BlackBerry. This will come down to marketing. Hopefully they'll launch a big campaign showing users all the capabilities, maybe set up a trade-in program getting a discount if you bring in your Android smartphone and get a BlackBerry...

    Buying a BlackBerry basically means getting tried and tested secure hardware with an incredible stable OS running a stable and up to date Android environment. You just can't lose.

    What do you guys think? Does BlackBerry have what it takes to persuade Android users to come back?
    Last edited by wout000; 06-29-14 at 11:17 AM.
    marcho11 likes this.
    06-29-14 08:53 AM
  2. kbz1960's Avatar
    No. Not if they want Google services.
    06-29-14 09:42 AM
  3. early2bed's Avatar
    Not if they cant run all the latest android apps as well as and with all the features of true Android devices.
    06-29-14 09:52 AM
  4. wout000's Avatar
    No. Not if they want Google services.
    Most enterprise apps don't use Google services and the apps that do (enterprise or consumer) are hit and miss when running them.
    There are 2 things that can happen when running an app on BlackBerry that relies on Google Services.

    1) It throws an error and quits rendering it useless on a Blackberry
    2) It throws an error but runs fine after dismissing it

    While the first one can't be solved without digging into the app itself and changing some of the programming, the second scenario is viable and can be easily mitigated by either installing the Google services APK on the device (while not using it, it gets rid of the error) or emulating the calls to it in the runtime. BlackBerry will never install the APK on a device as it can't be used and is probably against the Google Services TOS but they can emulate the calls an app makes to it within the runtime and for instance redirect a Google Maps request to BlackBerry Maps instead.

    Either way, BlackBerry will, when 10.3 is released with the updated runtime support all features Android has to offer as opposed to only 23.9% of Android devices out there (OS 4.3 and up).
    That's 76.1% out of 1 billion android devices (source is Google I/O 2014) that BlackBerry will have the drop on...

    Not if they cant run all the latest android apps as well as and with all the features of true Android devices.
    Feature-wise (disregarding the lack of Google services) I think BlackBerry is on par with most Android handsets available in the market today. As you can see on this page: https://developer.android.com/about/...rds/index.html. The statistics provided by Google themselves show that 86.4% of the Android handsets being used are running an Android OS lower than 4.4.
    BlackBerry runs the 4.3 runtime and has included support for all features available in that runtime.
    06-29-14 11:41 AM

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