Posted March 27, 2013 9:02 am by with 4 comments

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blackberry 10I find it hard to believe but BlackBerry is still around and there may even be a bit of life left in the beleaguered device maker.

The BlackBerry fall from grace is one of business school case study lore but while we are quick to dismiss the company in the US in lieu of Apple or Android devices, the rest of the world still knows Blackberry well. As the company works to fight back with its new BlackBerry 10 OS and devices like the Z10 it is using a rather interesting tactic to help it get back to relevancy. That tactic is having about 1 in 5 apps in the BlackBerry app store actually be Android apps. All Things D reports

One of BlackBerry’s key goals is getting developers to write apps designed to take advantage of its all-new operating system.

But, knowing that not all developers are ready to bet on a native app, the company has offered some shortcuts designed to get programs running on devices like its Z10, which went on sale this week at AT&T.

One of those is an emulation engine that allows Android apps to run. Roughly 20 percent of the 100,000 BlackBerry 10 apps fall into this category, according to Martyn Mallick, BlackBerry’s vice president for global alliances and business development.

Amazing how in a world where there are more battle lines being drawn than cooperation and coopetition being embraced, that this kind of strategy is being used. Whether it works or not remains to be seen but you have to give BlackBerry credit for being imaginative and aware of where their market is. The idea is that they might be able to get enough users in the fold to be at least a fringe player in the mobile device world again.

There’s more to this story and BlackBerry certainly still has a very tough row to hoe. There are some major players like Netflix and Instagram that do not have apps for BlackBerry 10 at all. That’s not exactly a vote of confidence is it?

What’s your take on this move? Smart? Desperate? Does BlackBerry have a place in the new world order of mobile devices?

  • Good article Frank!! I really think they should do that so they can match with Apple Iphone.. I think!…

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  • It’s really amazing how far Blackberry has fallen. When I bought my first Blackberry Curve, I thought it was the ultimate phone. So cool and sleek and high tech. Now. . . it’s barely a blip. Time for a comeback.

  • Netflix has elected not to commit at this time (pending market uptake) while Instagram has committed to porting their app to BlackBerry 10. Did you know that Android Gingerbread and Ice Cream Sandwich apps can be side loaded ? Even better is that Jelly Bean app support is expected soon. The App Gap is no longer an argument.