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How you can make the BlackBerry CEO's batshit-crazy smartphone dream a reality

John Chen cries 'discrimination' as discriminating consumers continue to choose Android and iOS

"All wireless broadband customers must have the ability to access any lawful applications and content they choose," BlackBerry CEO John Chen writes in a recent manifesto on net neutrality that spans from carriers to internet service providers to applications themselves.

And you know what? He's right. You should be able to access any lawful application and content you choose.

And you can. Here's how.

  • Step 1: Open your wallet. Retrieve credit card.
  • Step 2: Buy an iPhone or iPad. Or an Android phone or tablet. Or a Windows phone. Or even a BlackBerry. Or whatever the hell you want.

See? You do have a choice.

Chen's misguided stance on apps, content and 'neutrality'

John Chen

Where Chen goes off the rails — and to be fair there's a good bit in his piece that deserves your time, particularly the parts about carriers and ISPs — is when it comes down to compelling application developers to provide for any and all platforms.

There's 'open' and 'neutral' when it comes to the Internet. And then there's what John Chen thinks that should mean for apps.

"Key to BlackBerry's turnaround has been a strategy of application and content neutrality," Chen writes. "For example, we opened up our proprietary BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) service in 2013, making it available for download on our competitors' devices." This is true. Bringing BBM to Android — where it's been installed between 50 million and 100 million times, never mind the whole app review astroturfing thing — and iOS was a big deal. But "making [BBM] available ... on our competitors' devices" isn't the same as opening up a proprietary system as Chen implies. It's merely more widely available. As we've talked about so many times before, "open" tends to mean whatever the beholder wants it to mean. But don't let that stop anyone from using the buzzwords.

It gets worse, however. We'll just let these paragraphs speak for themselves:

Unfortunately, not all content and applications providers have embraced openness and neutrality. Unlike BlackBerry, which allows iPhone users to download and use our BBM service, Apple does not allow BlackBerry or Android users to download Apple's iMessage messaging service. Netflix, which has forcefully advocated for carrier neutrality, has discriminated against BlackBerry customers by refusing to make its streaming movie service available to them. Many other applications providers similarly offer service only to iPhone and Android users. This dynamic has created a two-tiered wireless broadband ecosystem, in which iPhone and Android users are able to access far more content and applications than customers using devices running other operating systems. These are precisely the sort of discriminatory practices that neutrality advocates have criticized at the carrier level.Therefore, neutrality must be mandated at the application and content layer if we truly want a free, open and non-discriminatory internet. All wireless broadband customers must have the ability to access any lawful applications and content they choose, and applications/content providers must be prohibited from discriminating based on the customer's mobile operating system.

BlackBerry is the losing team. But you simply cannot force anyone to keep playing for it.

Again, Chen is correct. A two-tiered system has emerged, for better or worse. Android and iOS are winning. That's business. It happens. Not everybody gets a trophy. But neither Android nor iOS is a "wireless broadband ecosystem" in the same sense that broadband Internet itself is akin to water coming down a pipe and should be regulated as such. Chen is mixing metaphors and dropping buzzwords in a regrettable attempt to shame developers into making applications for BlackBerry. That's all. And while we agree that more applications on more platforms is better, no one in their right mind should believe that forcing a developer to write a BlackBerry app if they also want to write an Android or iOS app is in any way something the CEO of a company of BlackBerry's stature — let alone anyone with a basic understanding of free enterprise — should be suggesting.

Chen mentions "discrimination" a lot as if it's only a bad thing. But after reading his manifesto, you have to wonder if he understands what it means. We all discriminate every day. The reason for picking one thing over another is what's important. If consumers and app developers are choosing Android and iOS over BlackBerry and Windows Phone, perhaps there's a reason for that. The new BlackBerry hardware is an anachronism. BlackBerry no longer can compete — and hasn't for a long time — on the operating system front. (Services, however, is still another matter.)

Both Chen and BlackBerry at large know exactly what discriminating consumers want. It's just not what BlackBerry is selling.

208 Comments
  • Blackberry still exists?
  • They do!!! They actually taste really good.
  • Lol Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yes they do...and my Z30 is still better for me, at a couple things, than my Note 4. It's also equally good at many other tasks.
    The Blackberry jokes are just a bit out. Posted via the Android Central App
  • What do you think of the proposal (mandate) that he makes above?
  • I think there is something philosophically wrong with a statement that proposes mandating freedom. As an aside: Are we past the point where we can even have appropriate language in the headlines? Let the harangue begin!
  • I agree. The Blackberry Jokes are past old. From my G3
  • Not as out as BB.
  • You know what else is just a bit out? Blackberry... Ha!
  • Indeed. BlackBerry makes some really good hardware.
    They are top at the "communication" part of using a phone. As for what the CEO is talking about, I think he's nuts. That being said, I wish Apple would voluntarily open access to iMessage to other platforms.
  • Had BB opened up sooner, and developed security for all other mobile devices when their products were dropping fast, they could of been at the top of the security industry for mobile electronics. BB was the at the top and the best in security, and they had a chance to branch outside their own devices and open it up, but chose not to do so for some reason. Too Bad they lacked the foresight. But now their are quite a few good security proprietors and BB is falling down the list into obscurity.
  • Absolutely love my z30. It never ever crashes, fast browser, and it's far more sturdy and stable and secure than ANY android or apple (the worst) phone. People knocking or cracking jokes on blackberry are only doing so ignorantly. Those people would rather have an inferior phone. Posted via Android Central App
  • Fully Agree.
    BlackBerry doesn't just exist, they have the Best Mobile OS in existence. Nothing can touch BB10. The only fully functional OS to date.
  • He's right because blackberry users deserve the same apps as android and IOS Posted via the Galaxy Note 4
  • Yeah he is in some ways but that's how people "compete". Whoever has note apps is better in some peoples eyes. Not every android app is available for every android phone. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yep, and when i go to Burger King i should be able to order a Big Mac. Be able to get a Nike swoosh on my Reebok shoes. Only have to watch CBS to get my favorite HBO shows. And While we're at it, i want a Swatch watch with Rolex movement. I used to make Themes for Blackberry's. They did not make me HAVE to make a theme for every device, i made the Themes for the devices i wanted to and if i wanted to support another device it was my choice. Then Blackberry decided who could use themes and who couldn't on there own products. Now we should feel bad that no one wants to develop for your OS anymore? Android doesn't have every app that IOS has. I have plenty of apps that work on one Android device that don't work on another. How about the Apps i have paid for in the Amazon App Store that are always a version or two behind the Play Store? There is a big portion of us here on Android or IOS that came from Blackberry. We all used your product and decided that we wanted more out of our mobile devices. Some of us stayed with you longer, some jumped ship first chance they got. Either way, most of us gave you a chance you blew it Blackberry.
  • I was a very happy BB user for a long time, up until the experience started to be exactly the same on multiple, sequential devices. My first BB was one of the 8700 models, and I enjoyed their products a lot until the OS completely stalled after the release of the Bold 9000 (which is still probably the most well-constructed phone I've ever used). After that, it was just more of the same for two years until I caved and bought a Nexus One and never looked back. Had they released something even close the a BB10 device two years earlier than they did, they probably would've prevented a ton of the bleeding that they've been experiencing for the last several years. But they just didn't anticipate consumer needs shifting, and they're paying the price for it. It sucks, because they were a good company who did a lot of things really well for a long, long time, but that's just the way it goes.
  • And Sailfish, and Tizen, and FirefoxOS, and what ever platform someone decides to develop out there. No, you're wrong. People compete but not everyone can win. It's simply not practical. BlackBerry failed years ago when they decided they didn't need to improve their OS and hardware. Now they are paying the price. Not many users, developers and companies don't have unlimited resources so they decide to support most used platforms.
  • To use some of Mr Chen's own language... When you as a user discriminate against Android or iOS and choose Blackberry, you and you alone are responsible for that choice and any attendant consequences. If you choose a device with a god awful app ecosystem, you have to live with choosing a device with a god awful app ecosystem. Buying a Blackberry and complaining about the shortage of apps is like buying a Fiat and complaining that it sucks for driving off road and doesn't comfortably fit your family of four. What did you expect, you bought a Fiat/Blackberry!
  • Why hasn't BlackBerry made a Password Keeper version for iOS, Android or Windows Phone yet? We have the right to use that app on our platforms as well.
  • A customer is a customer, regardless of platform. In the end its all about the customer. Unfortunately, what we have in this industry is terrible Monopoly driven companies such as Apple that continues to release garbage for premium prices.
    People are slowly catch on to the Apple manipulation and sales tactics, and there ripoff contracts carriers forcefully signed.
  • Do ignorant trolls still exist? Posted via BlackBerry Classic
  • thats so rude!!!! lol
  • this joke is getting old ...
  • blackberry doesn't want to admit they are stuck in the success trap. Just like Atari, they were innovators of the past, but stubborn and stuck in their old ways. They have been left behind in the future.
  • Sir, your last sentence is remarkable...
  • if they had just moved faster...i know a handful of people that would still have a blackberry if they had made BBM available on other devices. Those people left after everybody they know wasn't using BBM anymore. Heck, I would have BBM installed on my device now if they had. But they moved too slowly, and other options came along that were just as useful, plus cross-platform compatible.
  • He is off his rocker. Wow. I hung on to my BlackBerry far longer than most people did and finally bailed. Discrimination? You're spot on with your assessment. We all discriminate. We want what we want. Like what we like. Perhaps Blackberry can sell a lot of phones in North Korea. He just needs to get THAT crazy guy to want a Blackberry. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Great post. Discrimination is a word that gets used as a scare tactic far too much. It's a great concept and thank God for discrimination. Sure, sometimes discrimination sometimes is misplaced. This guy is an absolute fool if he is truly advocating this nonsense. Where was his company in the early 2000s when everyone on Palm OS and WinMob would have loved to participate in RIM's little proprietary money printing machine? Uhhhh, not on the "open access" bandwagon, that's for sure. Now that the company that he leads has been bludgeoned nearly to death because of his company's OWN well documented failures, he wants everyone else to play by his new rules that benefit him. What's next? Demanding that the Boat Anchor, errr Passport be used in the same numbers as iPhones? :-\
  • This guy is nuts. He invented this game, and now he's sad that they have failed to make it easy and profitable for developers to give them a shot. Your dev platform stinks, obviously, and there's not enough incentive for anybody to waste their time trying to figure out how to code for your OS. Basically, what he's saying is that anybody who wants to make an app should be forced to develop that app for all platforms? What about Joe-Bob's OS that he compiles in his moonshine producing garage on weeknights? Yeah, I'm sure Netflix cares about the 2 phones in existence with that OS.
  • This article gave me a good chuckle. It's absolutely true. Mr. Chen needs a better way to channel his frustrations. Maybe yoga would help.
  • Correct me if I am wrong. Didn't Chen once say apps were not important?
  • You've just identified how they wound up in this mess...
  • Nope, you're thinking of Balsillie. In 2010 he said you don't need apps if you've got the web.
  • Honestly, I run both WP & Android, and for the most part he's right, IF, if the mobile site is a good one, and the mobile browser is a good one...you don't need apps...but boy, a good app can really make the interaction with a company so much nicer...do you Need an app...no, but would I want a good app? Absolutely.
  • That applies to apps that are essentially ports of the mobile site, but there are many many apps that perform different functions besides that. Take a simple flashlight app for example... are you going to type "m.flashlight.com" in every time you want to use a flashlight? uh, no. I'd go so far as to say that, in the example I gave, yes you do need an app.
  • +1000
    This
  • I also use many apps offline. A mobile site would be no use to me if I was in a spot with poor data coverage.
  • yes, yes, you want a flashlight, ie...disconnected app, totally valid point. My point (and I didn't specify) was in regard to connected apps, banking, social media (FB, Instagram) things that require a data connection. To the point of getting use from an app when your phone doesn't have a data connection...time for a new carrier. I don't have that issue.
  • You don't have that issue because you don't go camping in the mountains, backpacking in the wilderness or fishing on a lake/ocean. EVERY carrier has limits to their coverage, you just choose not to leave yours.
  • Um...I go camping to leave my phone behind...kind of the point...try it sometime.
  • I actually do. My comment highlighted the fact that every carrier has its limits, which you just confirmed. Your comment is just to be a dick. Well played sir... I have been schooled.
  • Some apps are necessary, but some mobile sites are far superior to their associated apps. Sometimes I add the bookmark to my home Page and open it as an app. You can sideload android apps on blackberry why don't they develop an easier way for novices to install android apps like their own android app store? Posted via the Android Central App
  • "IF, if the mobile site is a good one, and the mobile browser is a good one...you don't need apps" This is just incorrect right from the start, as it all depends on the purpose of the app. Aside from the e-mail app, there's not a single paid app on my phone that would remotely be appropriately built as a web app. File managers, archive (zip/rar/7z) apps, RDP apps, wake on lan apps, drawing apps, audio/video apps, etc. That's not to say any of them *couldn't* be built as a web app, but doing so would be about as reasonable as trying to run your car on fermented cat shit. Probably technically possible, but not something anyone in their right mind would attempt. Chen is insane, and it should terrify investors/the board of Blackberry that it's CEO not only has such misguided ideas, but that he's putting his insanity on display for the world to see. The company is in serious trouble, and being helmed by someone living in a fantasy world isn't going to lead them to safety. Network access providers discriminating on who/what content is allowed through their pipe isn't even remotely the same as developers choosing the platform(s) that offer the best return on their investment of time/energy/resources. Suggesting app developers be *forced* to develop for every platform, regardless of the market each serves isn't just untenable, it's bat shit crazy.
  • I remember when they said that WiFi wasn't important also. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Ah yes, thanks.
  • Steve Balmer once said the same thing (It's not about the apps) regarding the iPhone (before WP). I looked but cannot find a link to the quote, however.
  • No, that was a previous CEO. Why else do you think John Chen partnered with Amazon for its App store along side with BBW.
  • I think we'll see a clickwheel on the next iPhone before we see iMessage for BlackBerry.
  • Lol Posted via the Android Central App
  • Or a touch screen on a Mac.
  • Clickwheel? You mean the "digital crown" on the iWatch.
  • *Apple watch Posted via the Android Central App
  • You can have all the apps but if people don't want a BlackBerry it doesn't matter. How's that Android run time doing for sales BB? From my Note 3 to thee
  • Lol... And people say he is the savior for Bb. Samsung cannot buy them fast enough Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • No one should buy BlackBerry. They should be left alone to go out of business Posted via the Android Central App on the 2nd Gen. Moto X
  • Too many patents to be left alone. Posted by my soon to be retired Note 3
  • Ignorance is Bliss.
    BlackBerry is not going anywhere but up. Based on many comments in this thread, BlackBerry filed for Chapter 11 years ago LOL. Yet they continue to acquire companies and continue to release new hardware and services.
    BlackBerry is transforming into a Multi Functioning company that will no longer have to fully rely on hardware sales. Its hardware division will never bring the company down to its knees. This is John Chen's strategy, and its working. 2015 is going to be a growth year with concentration via Mass Distribution. Give it some time, turn around's don't happen overnight. In retrospect, the Passport is the most advanced technologically superior smart phone ever released in existence. More to come, this time a full touch slab.
  • You have no idea how much I am anticipating this buyout having been a blackberry user for years, I switched for apps, screen etc, all the cool stuff android offers. Just dreaming of blackberry style sound profiles and bedside mode and combined notification hub the way blackberry does it. Maybe its impossible on my S5 or android devs never took a blackberry for a test drive before they created what they think is a sound profile app. Please please please would an android phone maker buy blackberry so I can have the best of both worlds. People here can dump on BB all they like... in some ways (mostly business/organizational related stuff) Android is still catching up.
  • You hit the nail on the head! Used to have a blackberry a few years ago, very smart os just didn't keep up with the rest in the areas that sell! Type anything in the search bar and it would compile a list with everything relating to that, be it an app or a setting deep in a menu! android has only recently added this feature in the settings menu yet blackberry had it over 5 years ago Posted via the Android Central App
  • Blackberry is an easy target. It doesn't take any degree of cleverness or wit to verbally kick someone who is already down. Chen is misguided, but his heart is in the right place. Android is great. So is iOS, but I don't want to live in a world where those are my only choices and you shouldn't either, unless you also only copulate in the missionary position. I actually test-drove a Blackberry Passport for 30 days, unlike many of the hecklers polluting the comments in YouTube videos and blogs like this one. I say "test drove" because, while I really enjoyed the device, I missed some critical apps that I use every day and even the Android versions wouldn't quite work correctly. Otherwise, I thoroughly enjoyed Blackberry OS. It's actually quite functional and pleasant to use. It's easy to say "Chen is a madman for making these comments", but I think all he's trying to say is that if all of the platforms were equal with respect to apps, it wouldn't be such an easy decision for some people. Choice is good, people. Some people won't even consider putting down their iPhone to try an Android phone and that's their loss, but you know what? The same can be said about the newer Blackberry devices, too. Blackberry or Microsoft calling it quits on the Smartphone game would only hurt us and you're foolish to think otherwise.
  • Well said. I have no idea why this stance from Chen would create such an impassioned post on android central. Feels like a stretch. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Because it's idiotic and was posted here as news.
  • Because he did it to himself. He tossed native developers to the wastebin and then started to tell users to pooch Android apps. This is what he gets for it. And he's ridiculous.
  • Yes, but he's asking the US Senate to legislate this equality. That's ridiculous, hence the ridicule. I agree with you that if the app situation was more equitable, the choice would be much more difficult. Blackberry does make solid products.
  • Yep, that's it right there. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I don't honestly think he's as serious as you think he is. Making that move got Blackberry in the news again and they need all the exposure they can get. Any publicity is good publicity, especially when your company is drowning and you have no money for advertising.
  • It would seem to me that people might still buy Blackberry's products if Blackberry still, in fact, made solid products.
  • How would you know? Have you even tried one since the Z10 was released? Because the Passport is the definition of a solid project. A little odd/polarizing? Sure. But the hardware is excellent.
  • Give the Z30 a try and come back. Great and underrated OS.
  • Actually, BlackBerry products are solid. The problem is that they sat on their behinds while others were making advances in the mobile phone arena. Also, their marketing is horse manure. We've been hearing that they'll go out of business for years now ....they won't. However, unless they stop with the "tools not toys" nonsense, they will never be the player that they once were.
  • True. Once they got in the "death spiral" it was too late. Happens to a lot of great tech companies. Palm, M$, and the list goes on and on in the non-mobile space.
  • The ridiculous "For Sale" sign caused a lot of issues for BlackBerry, especially when they should never have done that nor were they in a dire position to do such a thing.
    That For Sale Sign alone forced many Z10 returns. John Chen put the company on track. And I believe he achieved what he set forth, and that is why 2015 will be a BlackBerry growth year. Just watch and see.
  • You're absolutely correct. If Chen spent more time trying to right the ship so that this could be possible, then i'd have some respect for his comments. As it stands he's basically accusing everyone but himself of their failures. It's no developer's fault that BlackBerry is simply not desirable to most people. Only they can change that and it's not by pointing fingers at everyone else and complaining that life isn't fair.
  • ^ The best comment I've read in a long time ^ Posted via the Android Central App
  • Well Said,
    You hit the nail on the Head. And yes I use BB10 and Android, because I have an open mind to the entire mobile industry. I greatly dislike iOS though. Sure many like it, but also many are hard coded into not using anything other than iOS. So those people are missing out on a lot. All you have to do is just try out BB10 and you will quickly realize how fluid, smooth and intuitive the OS truly is.
  • The rantings of a desperate man.
  • This guy is an idiot. For lack of a better term. Posted via Android Central App
  • They should have a web app store that works on any device with Web browser and Internet connection Posted via Android Central App on 1+1
  • This. Posted via BlackBerry Classic
  • BlackBerry is discriminating by releasing pieces of sh** for consumers who might want to have a good phone on BlackBerry's ecosystem.
  • P-P-Please gubament, legislate us back into relevancy.
  • It's not discrimination for a developer to write software based on market share. That's just good business sense. Why would a developer like Netflix spend money and people resource on a platform with few users? Geez Blackberry, don't blame others for your own incompetence. Rest on your laurels too long, and someone WILL build a better mousetrap eventually and steal your business. Survival of the fittest. The strong will survive, those who don't adapt will die. Business 101. Posted via Android Central App
  • Netflix is a perfect example... Doesn't BB bill itself as primarily a "professional" device? Wouldn't most corporations simply block/filter the installation/use of apps like Netflix, citing productivity concerns? Why then should Netflix be forced to create an app for BB?
  • Because the "Majority" of BB10 users use BB10 for personal use and are not running under BES12. That is why.
  • Do you realize that BlackBerry 10 contains a built in android runtime? Do you know what that means? It means Netflix can post their apk onto BBW and it would most definitely work assuming Google services aren't attached to it.
  • The Netflix APK runs on BB10 perfectly, and has since BB10.2.1 (which came out over a year ago). All Netflix would have to do is upload the APK to BlackBerry World. That's it. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Because there's 15+ Million BlackBerry users that want a Netflix BB10 App. And that number is slowly growing. By the end of 2015, that 15 Million will become over 30+ Million.
  • I mean, nothing stops Blackberry from dropping BBOS altogether and build an Android version with a BB10 Launcher over it. Look at what Amazon did. Then, they would have their own "OS" with the Play Store. I think, if they did that, they may actually survive.
  • which amazon device has the play store? last i checked, none of them do. they all use amazon's app store.
  • Not going to happen - BlackBerry won't make any money off of Android. I think Chen's frustration is coming out - BlackBerry really wanted Netflix to make a BB10 app and Netflix just won't do it even though they did it for Windows Phone. BlackBerry OS phones such as the Storm and Tour with the spinning hourglasses, constant reboots needed, and lack of apps really hurt BlackBerry. BlackBerry has fixed the spinning hourglasses and necessary constant reboots but now they need to fix the lack of apps. Using the Android app store through Amazon isn't a great solution. BlackBerry wants to encourage developers to create HTML5 apps that are compatible for all platforms. This would help them bridge the app gap.
  • They would have to make money off of hardware sales. They certainly can't be making money off of BB10. Android would certainly be more of a money maker. They should stick with their Blackberry Classics and start a new line of Android phones as well. Diversification would be their best bet. Just ask Nokia how a single approach works. Posted via the Android Central App
  • The butthurt is strong with this one.
  • You sound experienced.
  • LOL
  • Left Blackberry after many years and got an lg g3, the reason was apps plain and simple make my work life simplified, if chen wants more apps develop devices that consumers want and that developers will develope for Posted via the Android Central App
  • Crazy talk man. Legislating for your own companies favor is much easier.
  • This is the same stance a lot of the net neutrality people are taking though? Complain to Congress and the fcc about how unfair the internet provider situation is, when the problem stemmed from poor business decisions years ago. Everyone is down on the cable companies for being the only provider, but that's not true, they are just the only provider that saw speeds past 10mps as important. I'm not in agreement with Chen's stance, but I think more people would be if apple or android had 90% of the app market and were making some questionable decisions about those apps. Posted via the Android Central App
  • No, net neutrality is about not taking active steps to harm particular content providers or users of particular services . Net neutrality is the default, it takes extra work and extra effort to be non-neutral on the net. With this app neutrality, it is about forcing action, forcing developers to spend extra time and money to create an app for a platform. The default is not having any app, developers must do extra work and must spend extra money to add support for an additional platform.
  • I hope Apple, in response to this, makes iMessage available for Android and leaves Blackberry out of the loop just for giggles. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I would fall over laughing if Tim got up on stage at WWDC and said, "Hey. You know how people wanted us to take iMessage cross-platform? Well, we've done it. Introducing iMessage for Android, Windows 10,...and Ubuntu.
  • Ubuntu would be the nail in the coffin. Lol. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Hahahaha I laughed way too hard at this Posted via the Android Central App
  • Phil Nickinson: you are so wrong, and this article is so up your behind, you can probably visually inspect what you've been eating for breakfast. Facebook and Twitter apps on BlackBerry is attributed to BlackBerry themselves, even though the same apps on Android would be written by themselves, so BlackBerry doesn't mind to put in the dev effort to provide an app that the services may not necessarily wiling to invest that time themselves. So why is Netflix or Instagram missing? Or even whatsapp. My brother in law couldn't put up with a Lumia 800, even though he said the rest of the phone is fine, but the app slowed to a crawl, and Whatsapp has little interest in fixing bugs in their own applications. Devs are targetting the 2 platform that gets them the majority of users, which will kill off alternatives, and leave you with a 2 party state that stifles eventually. Just look at the US politics.
  • I'm sorry, but I'm missing the examples of how you think I'm wrong, and that it's OK to legislate that app devs create for all platforms.
  • As a guy moving back to Android from WP...its just business, your right Phil, welcome to competition. If someone wants to swim upstream (BB & WP), that's a consumers choice...I've decided to try tubing down the river with a beer cooler in tow for a while... (Don't get me wrong, I like WP a whole lot...going to wait for Lollipop & Win10 to see what universal apps bring to the table.)
  • Being forced to do something is not the same as competing. Not by a long shot. I'm all for folks using BB and WP. (I like the hell out of WP, actually.) But "forcing" developers to make apps for all platforms? That's beyond silly.
  • Alternatively, denying someone to support your service even if they put in the effort to write the app, is that not stifling competition? http://www.theverge.com/2013/8/22/4646674/instagram-6tag-app-launches-fo... WP had a working Instagram but weren't allowed to release it for a long long time, and that finally happen, presumably after MS drove a dump truck full of money to make that happen. It doesn't take long to find that some of the top social network apps for BlackBerry 10 or BlackBerry 7 weren't written by the social network at all; it was attributed to BlackBerry themselves. They'd in in the same boat as MS with Instagram. Now think again as to why there's no Netflix or Instagram on BB10, and while Chen may be wrong in mandating people to write apps for all, but try and think again in the context that WP had a copy of Instagram that they couldn't release.
  • Ya know that scam when a dude walks up to your car at a stoplight, starts cleaning the windshield and then demands payment? That's what you're describing there. You can't tell a company it has to release an API. Alternatively, you don't have to use that company's products or services. But "putting in the effort to write the app" by no means guarantees that the company's whose non-public API you're leaching off of has to support it. That's just life.
  • And that scam is also happening the other way. Did you think that BB or WP wasn't interested enough to at least ring Instagram or Netflix to negotiate the terms needed to make it happen? The typical reason for not supporting anything outside of iOS and Android is the lack of resources to write an app for a 3rd platform. Something must have happened for WP to finally be able release an official Instagram on their platform (which is probably the same app that MS had written themselves), and you can bet money have exchanged hands. Putting in the effort may mean to write the app for them, pay them money to get their blessing, and/or more, which is needed to satisfy the most comment reason (or excuse, depending your POV) why services refuses to release apps for the 3rd platform, which is lack of resources. You see it as leeching, the platforms may see it as an attempt to remove a barrier to get a desired app on board. And you're right, it's just life that people who have more bargaining power gets to decide how this all plays out. WP or BB needed Instagram more than Instagram needed them, so Instagram gets to dictate whether it's going to happen, and what are the terms. WP was able to cough it up, and that's why there's an official client now. Ultimately, is this any different than Comcast QoSing Netflix in the negotiations, because ultimately, Netflix needed Comcast more than Comcast needed Netflix?
  • Ultimately, most of you assume that it's a meritocracy that iOS and Android gets all the apps because their system its better, and WP and BB doesn't get it because they're crap. In reality, the only metric on whether your platform is good is how many eyeballs your platform would let an app reach, regardless of the actual quality of the platform (and I'm not saying this to trashtalk iOS or Android, I've been using an Android phone for years and quite frankly a very happy user). If you're on the losing end of that dynamic, in order for you to climb up, you'd have to pay a huge cost to climb up. It's like the game developer for Papers Please cutting out content to satisfy the App Store - the game developer needed the eyeballs on iOS more than Apple needed it, so they'll bend over and do what it takes to make it happen. If BB or WP wanted the app, the game developer could shut them out of spite if they wanted to, or demand a chunk of change, release it once and never bother to update it afterwards. I suppose you could be content with the way things are, and that's fine. But to simply assume that BB or WP has no apps because they're a bunch of incompetent idiots with a crap platform, and them attempt to write an app for a service and then negotiate to get official blessing as leeching is naive. If you're hot enough platform, a national carrier can waive regulatory requirements given that they wanted it badly; if it's the other way around, you'd be jumping hoops all day.
  • Oh looky here. Exactly the same point I've been making from someone else on reddit:
    http://www.reddit.com/r/nottheonion/comments/2tacfn/blackberry_ceo_app_d... It's not that Netflix must provide an app for all platforms, it's about not demanding an extra chunk of change to make it work, which Netflix has suffered at the hands of ISPs in spades, and should've understood the point in the first place.
  • They may not have a crappy OS, but they had crappy OSes and they took too long to improve it to the great OSes it is today and too many people decided that they would rather jump ship than wait for them to improve it. I understand what you're saying and I truly feel sorry for them but as a previous Blackberry owner they should at least admit that it's partially their fault. A while back the tables were turned when they locked everyone in with bis and BBM, then they were singing another song... Posted via the Android Central App
  • Correct...no where is it written that a company can't control its property...or who accesses its assets or by what means...they have every right to control it.
  • Calyth you smell of a typical dellusional blackberry fan boy/girl...maybe if blackberry's ecosystem wasn't so CRAP they would have more users. More users = more developers. Android wasn't born with 1 billion users loving it...it earned it's users as did Apple...you can't put out crap products and expect developers flock to it...
  • Netflix, Instagram, WhatsApp (among many others) are missing because the platform doesn't have enough users for those companies to justify making the app. There's nothing evil about it, it's just the companies focusing their efforts on platforms that actually have users.
  • The problem isn't to make others to write apps on your platform - the problem is that even if you offered to write it for them (i.e. no cost to Instagram / netflix / whatsapp), get the app to fit into their requirements to match their own work on iOS and Android, yet they still won't let you release it. Like my replies to Phil, WP dev team had written an Instagram app for Instagram, but they couldn't release it. Something else must have happened for Instagram to change their mind.
  • So basically, if you have movies and music on a home server for yourself...as long as I make an app myself, I should be allowed to use it to access your home server, and distribute it publicly to any user that would like access to your collection. Got it. Seems like a fair argument.
  • They still need to go over the code and approve it, give them access to their databases and servers which also takes man power and resources, it's not like they are going to just run it and say that it looks nice and is approved, the process can take very long and involve constant changes and reviews, they would also by approving it agree to have to monitor it continously, does that sound like no resources at play? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Don't forget that the companies would be putting their name on it, so if something went wrong down the line it would be their name being dragged through the mud. What if they decide to change their API down the road? They would either have to coordinate with Blackberry to get it changed on the app (which would mean their are completely dependant on Blackberry's whims and schedule, and takes time and money), or they could fix it themselves (which requires their time and money), or they could let it break (which hurts their reputation).
  • Both Netflix and Instagram APKs run perfectly on BB10 today. All these devs would have to do is upload the APKs to BlackBerry's app world. No 'conversion' process required. The exact APKs from Google Play work. It literally requires no more than a copy and paste. Unfortunately for bb, Netflix/Instagram don't want to even take the few minutes to copy an APK file. It would cost them pennies to do, but bb is not even worth pennies to them. Meanwhile, 100s of devices with far less market share than even bb get custom versions of Netflix (like my dad's no name Blu Ray player). Not sure why it is, but there you go. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Silly. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I discriminate against shit stuck in the past software where users have to sideload android apps Commonly known today as blackberry Posted via the Android Central App
  • Isn't this really about some sort of Universal app api dream where any OS could use 1 App (& Appstore I suppose) for any mobile platform? Its a utopian pipe dream that will never happen...I suppose Google/BB could cooperatively create a native runtime engine that would run all Android apps out of the gate (doesn't the current one stink?)...but I would think BB & WP would be a better fit? #3 & #4 combining Apps/Stores so developers can knock out both platforms with 1 code line?
  • If Chen has his way that means Netflix will be coming to my webOS HP Touchpad. Oh Boy! Oh Boy! Oh Boy!!!!
  • I got an old Symbian phone crying out for some love
  • I'm thinking why isn't "synergy" from webOS on every platform these days..... Oh wait, maybe it is. Busting the Pre out now!
  • Either this CEO is having some translation issues, or his cheese slid off his cracker. It would be a hoot to hear him even try to re-explain that train wreck of a speech. The reality distortion field is strong with this one. He should be ashamed and embarrassed.
  • I have no sympathy for BlackBerry, The guy maybe doing his best to get that company on solid footing now. But the way they treated loyal customers in the recent past and refused to give customers what they wanted in a phone OS and ecosystem until they had absolut