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BlackBerry brings its Hub and other apps to more Android phones with Hub+ suite

BlackBerry has announced the launch of the BlackBerry Hub+ suite of Android apps, which will be made available with a new software licensing program for mobile devices.

The BlackBerry Hub inbox is included in this app bundle, which also includes a calendar, password keeper, contacts. notes, a launcher and more. BlackBerry is offering a free 30-day trial for the BlackBerry Hub+ suite, via the Google Play Store. After the trial is over, customers can continue to use the BlackBerry Hub+ suite for free, with ad banners, or get rid of them for $0.99 a month, which also includes access to additional apps. The apps are already preloaded on the BlackBerry Priv and the upcoming DTEK50 Android phone.

The BlackBerry Hub+ suite is currently only available for Android 6.0 Marshmallow devices. The Inside BlackBerry blog says that the company is looking to expand its reach to Android 5.0 Lollipop phones in the future.

Press release

BlackBerry Launches Software Licensing Program for Its Mobility Solutions Business

BlackBerry delivering on its smartphone software strategy, BlackBerry Hub+ gives Android users the quintessential BlackBerry productivity experience

WATERLOO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Aug. 3, 2016) - BlackBerry Limited (NASDAQ:BBRY)(TSX:BB), a global leader in secure mobile communications, announced today the launch of a software licensing program for its Mobility Solutions business by introducing the BlackBerry® Hub+ for Android. A suite of BlackBerry applications, BlackBerry Hub+ makes productivity and communication on Android 6.0 Marshmallow smartphones effortless.

BlackBerry's Mobility Solutions unit manages the BlackBerry smartphone business and development of device software offerings that includes maximizing the best of BlackBerry 10 software features and making them accessible on other platforms.

"An important initiative of the Mobility Solutions unit is a software strategy that combines BlackBerry's strength in security, engineering savvy and device experience. The result - the ability to extend the best of BlackBerry's secure communications and productivity features to any Android M consumer, enterprise or government customer," said Ralph Pini, Chief Operating Officer and General Manager, Mobility Solutions, BlackBerry. "Our customers have always raved about the unique experience of our proprietary productivity apps such as the BlackBerry Hub, calendar and contacts, amongst others. I'm excited that we're now able to offer these amazing features to all Android users that demand the most out of their smartphones."

The Best of BlackBerry…on Android

BlackBerry Hub+ for Android is a suite of applications that includes the BlackBerry Hub, calendar, contacts, notes, tasks, device search, launcher and password keeper applications for Android smartphones. Users can download a free trial from Google Play and access BlackBerry Hub+ from any Android device running 6.0 Marshmallow. The trial includes a suite of applications, including the BlackBerry Hub, calendar and password keeper. After a 30-day trial, users can continue using the apps for free with an ad-based experience, or subscribe to the entire suite of apps for 99 cents a month, which will include additional features: contacts, tasks, device search, notes and launcher. Additionally, users can choose to download the full suite from Google Play or just pick their favorite apps.

For users on BlackBerry 10, PRIV and DTEK50, all of these apps come fully integrated for a seamless out of the box experience.

Key features of the BlackBerry Hub+ include:

  • Hub: A unified inbox that allows you to:
  • compose email messages and social posts
  • respond directly to messages and calendar invitations
  • snooze items so that you can view them at a later date, time or location
  • quickly select recipients for email messages using suggested contacts
  • file email messages and manage all your folders
  • search for messages or contacts saved directly on your device or on the email server and more.
  • Calendar: View and respond to meeting invitations directly from the BlackBerry Hub. When you create or change events, you can avoid double bookings by viewing when you're busy. Using the "Join Now" feature, you can instantly dial into your meetings directly from your event reminder. And with Google Now voice commands, booking meetings has never been easier.
  • Password Keeper: Stores all your passwords, log in information and important records safe in one highly secure spot that is encrypted with a password of your choice.
  • Contacts: Stores all your contact info in one location for convenient management. You can interact with your contacts using a variety of methods such as phone calls, text and email messages, or calendar events directly from the Contacts app. You can also create and manage contact groups.
  • Tasks: Increase your efficiency at work by creating tasks, setting due dates and reminders to help you stay focused and meet your deadlines.
  • Device Search: Easily find a contact, a meeting, a file, an email, a song by searching in one universal search bar.
  • Notes: Keep track of to-do lists or your bucket list, notes for a presentation, action items from a meeting, gift ideas for your family or groceries you need to pick up after work.
  • Launcher: Turn multi-step actions like sending an email or calling a friend into a one-click task. BlackBerry Launcher lets you organize apps, widgets and shortcuts on customized home screen panels for instant access.
  • I guess that's it then. The last reason I had to buy a BlackBerry device is gone. The Priv was a decent phone but now there's really no point in buying BlackBerry hardware Sent from my BlackBerry Priv
  • Guaranteed security updates are a pretty strong reason, especially for IT departments.
  • Not as big of a deal as it once was. We have hit the point where we give our data away for convenience.
  • As long as they keep the keyboard phones coming, that's a sufficient reason for me to carry on buying. If there's no more phones I'll stockpile the Privs to scavenge for parts.
  • Agreed. I think Nexus is the best device to get now. Regular monthly updates like the Priv/DTEK50. Posted via the Android Central App on my BlackBerry Passport
  • My priv had an issue where the back of the device physically flexed in just a tad. It was a great device, but that little bot of give left me feeling like it wasn't a premium device at all Posted via the Android Central App
  • Maybe they did it so we could stop tracking how many android phones they sold by checking the hub download count on play store lol Posted via the Android Central App
  • How about an option for just the hub? And where's the keyboard at?
  • You can already get those individual pieces, just not officially through Blackberry.
  • Where/how?
  • Search for cobalt in Google Posted via the Android Central App
  • he's not going to help people get the hub for free anymore.
  • I just found the Hub all alone in the Google Play Store from BlackBerry. Am I the only one seeing this? Also I Installed the suite but I don't see the launcher or contacts app. Only Hub, Calendar, and BlackBerry Password Keeper. Posted via Nexus 6
  • Yeah why is the keyboard not included in this?? This is one feature that is seemingly easily available for all android phones. Unless they are planning to release it separately to everyone?
  • ^^^ BlackBerry vkb is awesome. Have it on both of my Nexus phones. Wish Password keeper synced between android and BB10 phones. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Im Not sure if the masses are ready for a subscription launcher. I haven't used this suite of apps, but I did have a long history with Blackberry, so I definitely think they will be productive. It's just that, even though it's 99¢ per month, that seems like more of a hindrance than just paying $20 and getting it for the life of the device.
  • Considering you're probably paying $9.99/month for Netflix, $14.99 for HBO Now and $9.99 for Spotify... $0.99 for this service really is pennies. Posted via the Android Central App
  • You are absolutely right. Swap out Amazon with Spotify and you have me pegged. The issue is that as a whole, we don't mind renting things that we consume. It has been proven (especially in the mobile space) that people are not as sold on the annoyance of a monthly fee for productivity software. Most would rather pay once and be done with it.
  • I disagree.
    I think society has accepted subscription services.
    Don't you think that seeing the price of $0.99 is much easier to the regular consumer than a price tag of $19.99?
    A $0.99 price takes away the fear of trying it. Imagine spending $20 upfront for an app you've never used? Most would say no thanks, too big of a risk. But $0.99 on the other hand... it's a buck... why not? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Because it isn't just "a buck". It's $11 per year or $22 over the average lifespan of a phone. People aren't dumb, it all boils down to the bottom line.
  • "A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals..." - Agent K :D
  • But the real question is whether anyone will be willing to pay for Blackberry Hub+. As a non-Blackberry person, I don't understand why/how they'd convince me to fork over $0.99 a month for their suite of apps. I hear Blackberry people rave about it, but I couldn't care less.
  • That's why there's a free version for you to try it. Posted via the Android Central App
  • In the words of a hardcore Apple user who left my company, and joined a company that actually uses iPhone - he misses his BlackBerry 10 for its Hub, email client, and calendar. If you use your phone for work, then you realize nothing else comes close. Posted via the Android Central App on my BlackBerry Passport
  • It's true... that's why I'm dreading next week when my company issues iPhone SE's to the sales team. IPhone email is the worst! Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yep! My wife's iPhone has over 17,000 unread messages. Samsung with bb's hub has 0. Though I think that the user is to blame more than the software Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yep! My wife's iPhone has over 17,000 unread messages. Samsung with bb's hub has 0. Though I think that the user is to blame more than the software Posted via the Android Central App
  • So is this going to replace the terrible Good app suite?
  • When you cns easily sideload the APKs. #TeamFrosty Nexus 6P
  • This. is. Glorious!! I miss the hub so much.
  • So it seems the launcher portion is not part of the trial which is odd you would think you would want people to get the full feel for the complete product. To me the hub is useless if it's not integrated in the launcher. Also seems there is no way to skip the trial and pay the .99 to see the launcher.
  • I did confirmed with BB Support on Twitter that you can't skip the trial and you can't pay for the service and get the launcher until after the 30 day trial. Pretty dumb.
  • So does that mean we won't be able to see the launcher until we've used the Hub for 30 days? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yeap, after 30 days you can sign up for the subscription service and then get access to the launcher. At least that what BB Support noted to me.
  • Glad to know I wasn't just missing it. Seems crazy that they want you to have a "trial" that is essentially a broken experience even if your willing to pay to try the full experience. Why would they not want to instantly start making money?
  • That is pretty much what I DM'ed back to them and no response to that. I really don't get why they don't include the launcher in the trial. You would think it would make folks more interested in signing up. I'm pretty sure the launcher gives you extra integration with the hub making it far more useful. I just hope at some point they bring a long the keyboard.
  • Aren't we passed questioning BlackBerry's idiotic business decisions? If their thought process wasn't so backwards they would likely still be a major player in the hardware business where they once dominated. Now they're a software company and if this is true that you can't pay your way passed the trail stage and have to use the product in an unfinished trail stage for 30 days, they won't even be a software company for long. ~TheRealFixxxer
  • Sounds alright, but I will stick with my Passport.
  • I will be downloading this. Now if only the keyboard was available on the play store Posted via the Android Central App
  • My Nextbit Robin running 6.0.1 is incompatible? Wtf
  • Can't seem to find the download link - anyone? I see Hub, but not Hub+. Posted via the Android Central App
  • If you download Hub, and open it, it will link you to download hub+.
  • Same, I don't see it available yet Posted via the Android Central App
  • I downloaded it an hour ago. Just download hub, then when you open the app, you will be linked back to playstore to download hub+.
  • Not happening for me. Hub is installed on my T-Mobile S7 Edge. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Think I'll stick to cobalt's version of the hub. Posted via the Android Central App
  • why bother with cobalt when you can get the latest and best from Google Play. and get upgrades easily.
  • Subscription based? Mmmm... Is it worth it, BB Users?
  • It's free for a month without ads. Then ad-supported afterwards for free. You can removed the ads by paying $1/month.
    Try it out yourself and decide. I personally think it is totally worth it. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I have a hub, it's called Inbox (by Gmail). I get my email and Google Voice SMS all in one place
  • The blackberry hub is much, much more involved. Email, SMS, IM, Voice, Social Media all in one place. If you've ever owned a blackberry it was probably the biggest feature of having one. Posted via the Android Central App
  • It is too involved, for most people.
  • You can make less involved if you want or use the full feature set. The choice is yours. Posted via Nexus 6
  • I'm really glad they've finally done this. Selling app subscriptions will reach a much broader Android user base than they have with their hardware. I hope they put the Virtual Keyboard up in Google Play as well. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Not working. When try to install giver an error. Any clues? Posted via the Android Central App
  • When I download it, what it downloaded was an app to install HUB and then Calendar, so I opened that app and then selected to install HUB and Calendar from it.
  • My fb messages/notifications are not showing...ideas? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Same question here, FB folder is there after i installed the App on my phone, I went to fb on my pc, to Settings and then Notifications then Changed to activate email notifications but nothing came through, Then I open fb App on phone to; App Settings, to make sure all it's Notifications settings were on and they were. I was able to actually create a fb post from within HUB and it showed up in fb on my pc. Right now all I can say is, it is a Beta and this may need tweaking.
  • UPDATE: After doing all of the above I just received a FB notification in HUB. So try all the above. I was trying to initiate a fb notification by posting on my pc and none came through but another person posted and it came through. Can't say it was by adjusting fb through web or directly on the phone fb App but it's happening now and I can confirm it will work. Good luck!
  • If you have multiple very active email accounts and social media handles the HUB is amazing. If you have one email and Facebook well you really won't see the benefits. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yes, yes, yes! I just put my Passport and Z30 up for sale and bought two Nexus 6's for my wife and I. I saw this two minutes ago and it is on my N6! Now I have one question, I loath having the facebook app on my phone and use the browser to access it. I want fb notifications to appears in HUB bit all I see is the ability to add email address's. Has anybody else installed and did you see a way to get fb directly into HUB, I know I can elect email notifications of fb , just don't want to install fb on my phone to try out HUB and fb.
  • I wouldn't mind having this to funnel my work emails into my personal phone. But Hub requires me to accept my company's admin permissions, up to and including remote-wiping my phone if they want to. I know that is pretty standard in corporate environments, but remember this is my personal phone, not a work-issued phone. By contrast, something like the OWA app requires no permissions...but I need to login every time I open it, and obviously I'm still dealing with a separate inbox with that app. My job is not very email-intensive, so I *could* get away with OWA, but the convenience of Hub would be so nice...
  • I downloaded this as soon as it came out. Such a great thing to finally have the Hub app on my non-Blackberry device. One thing that dumbfounded me a little bit. I wanted to go ahead and jump into the paid-service so I could grab the BB launcher as well. I reached out to Blackberry Support on Twitter and they said you have to go through the free 30 day trial before you can even subscribe to the service to get the launcher. Pretty rare that a company won't take my money.
  • "Pretty rare that a company won't take my money." This week on "That's So BlackBerry!"... :P
  • I just wish Blackberry would allow you to setup BBM as an SMS client.
  • Where is the launcher!?! Posted via the Android Central App
  • Part of the paid subscription which you can't access until after the 30 day trial.
  • The thing that's missing is the BlackBerry keyboard. Without that I won't even consider spending $1 a month! Posted via the Android Central App
  • I've had a night to use Blackberry HUB, so far so good, I keep it open, it doesn't swipe and doesn't set up its own main screen, so I keep it open. Unless I want some other App, my phone, email, fb, text are there and i can post to fb from HUB and utilize all the other operations from HUB. What I want to do now is shut off non-HUB notifications and let HUB do the work and so that I don't get duplicate not.'s.
  • What about BlackBerry file explorer Posted via the Android Central App
  • Be nice if the hub just constantly ran on a home screen panel and I could swipe to the right to access it like on a BB10 phone. I also do not get "spark" notifiers on the app icon or my work email shortcut that I created. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Pretty sure after the 30 days and you can opt into the paid subscription thus getting the BB launcher the spark notifications will work correctly.
  • I was a Blackberry user until several months ago. The Hub was the best part of the BlackBerry. I did download it and have been playing around with it. It's a tad slow and for text messages it really just launches the native text app. Hopefully improvements will be forthcoming. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Will AC provide a full review? Perhaps running on a Nexus and S7 device for comparison purposes? Posted via the Android Central App on my BlackBerry Passport
  • That would be great. Or even perhaps over @ CrackBerry. Posted via my HTC 10
  • Apparently they won't be able to until they've used the trail for 30 days and are actually able to unlock and use the launcher as well. ~TheRealFixxxer