RIM is hosting their second annual mobitex pagers that had business users excited at the prospect of seeing Ds and Rs next to messages that were delivered & read between colleagues.next week, November 9th-12th in San Francisco, CA. This event will, in many respects, be critical for RIM and the BlackBerry platform. It was not that long ago that RIM’s devices were merely simple
The BlackBerry lineup of devices have since matured to be the corporate user’s primary messaging machine, and handily infiltrated the consumer space with Pearls, Curves, Bolds and Storms. RIM is now hoping to attract more developers to their platform and increase market share in an already competitive arena where the iPhone, Android, Windows Mobile and webOS continue to sway both consumer and corporate users.
The BlackBerry developer conference will be attracting both experienced and new mobile application developers, with sessions ranging from BlackBerry development methods using Java and .NET, to success stories from the developers themselves. Developers from teams like Screaming Toaster, who put together the Wicked Blogging app, as well as the folks behind the Unsynced music player — will be presenting as well as vying for a top-prize package valued at over $100,000. In years past, it has been RIM’s other event — the annual (WES) — that has earned the most attention from the BlackBerry community and the wireless industry in general. Now the name of the game certainly seems to be mobile applications (which have definitely benefited the iPhone), and that means much more focus on developers and their contributions to BlackBerry.
In a time when companies looking to develop more mobile applications will almost certainly have the iPhone and Android on their roadmap of platforms to focus on, can RIM excite more developers to create applications for the BlackBerry? While I am a die-hard BlackBerry fan and continue to use it as my “primary” daily device, the OS (even for all of the 5.0 facelifts) is showing it’s age. There is the promise of a WebKit based browser coming, which will help drive more web based apps for the BlackBerry platform (as well as give the ‘Berry a usable browsing experience without relying on 3rd Party browser replacements). Is it enough — or too little, too late?
The BlackBerry Developer conference will be a good indicator of where RIM will be going, and how current developers gauge the path forward for the devices and the platform in general. Will you be attending or participating in the conference? What’s your take on the future for BlackBerry?