Rumor: BlackBerry smartphones to run Android apps

By on August 25, 2011, 2:00 PM

Research in Motion (RIM) could be looking to integrate Android application support into future BlackBerry smartphones by next year. The move could help revive slowing BlackBerry sales and give customers a much larger app selection than RIM’s App World currently offers.

Bloomberg spoke with three people familiar with the plans that claim RIM’s new QNX smartphone software will be Android-compatible. This is the same OS that the BlackBerry PlayBook uses and if you recall, RIM announced earlier this year that their tablet would get Android app support this summer. The simple fact that the PlayBook is based on the same QNX software that will find a home on BlackBerry smartphones makes this rumor highly feasible.

Google’s Android Market features over 250,000 apps while RIM’s BlackBerry App World barely tops 40,000 apps.

RIM is expected to introduce new QNX-based phones in early 2012 and the company can use all of the help it can get. A June 2011 comScore report showed that RIM had slipped to third place with a 23.4 percent share among smartphone platforms. In July, the company announced plans to cut 2,000 jobs worldwide after poor quarterly reports.

But in RIM’s defense, they are taking a proactive approach to turn things around rather than waiting around for the inevitable. Last month RIM released BlackBerry Messenger 6, an update to their popular Messenger service that enabled interaction with a handful of connected apps. And just today, RIM introduced the rumored BlackBerry streaming music service officially known as BBM Music.




User Comments: 6

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Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

I thought they already announced this before the play book got released?

Guest said:

Android OS is an "Open Platform", allowing developers

to configure "Permissions" for the device.

As long as BlackBerry "Network Transport Payload"

still have to implement RIM proxies, it's no use only

... "Running" on Android OS on-top of BlackBerry OS

All smartphone on "Radio Signal" has latency, with

added network proxies, its too slow !

aj_the_kidd said:

Tekkaraiden said:

I thought they already announced this before the play book got released?

I think the previous announcement related specifically to the playbook only, but this article is talking about BB smartphones. I think that is the difference. I believe the playbook has a different version of the BB OS (which is android compatible) compared to smartphones and that the new BB OS for smartphones will be android compatible, i think.

Guest said:

IMO, I think RIM should just drop their OS, adopt windows8 instead and concentrate on offering stronger corporate/business services integration and solutions. They could create a BES server UI with granular controls on top of windows server/activesync hooks, reducing costs for traditional standalone BES server.

Guest said:

Well i think if BB is allowing Android Apps on their phones then BB should also enable its services on Android phones, isnt it? Fair Usage Policy :P

Guest said:

"if BB is allowing Android Apps on their phones then BB should also enable its services on Android phones, isnt it?"

Ideally would be nice. Or another way, take android and modify it under a license which allows them to use android as a base, but keep ability to customize it enough to be proprietary enough to differentiate and keep their patents, while allowing access to Android and Blackberry OS market.

Bah won't happen. Soon RIM will end up being like PALM.

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