As I watched the BlackBerry DevCon keynote yesterday one of the things that I noticed was that the BlackBerry that we know and love today really wasn’t mentioned all that much. Presenter after presenter talked about what they were doing in BBX and almost every demonstration was of some app or gaming engine that would run in BBX.
It turns out that BlackBerry DevCon, thus far, has been almost solely about BBX and what’s coming to the BlackBerry PlayBook as well as next-generation BlackBerry smartphones because none of the ‘old’ legacy Java BlackBerry applications will be compatible with BBX. The BlackBerry JDE Runtime Player that has been talked about for as long as the Android App Player has been scrapped and JDE development is effectively being killed off.
A problem for Research in Motion is that they’ve been trying to support an aging BlackBerry OS, while, at the same time, create a new operating system that is on par with other smartphone platforms. RIM’s mantra has been that they would continue to support legacy JDE apps while paving the way to BBX, but, it looks like the company has changed gears and is now following the footsteps of Microsoft who made a clean break away from Windows Mobile when they moved to Windows Phone 7.
One could easily say that RIM would have been better off if they would have come to this decision before they released BlackBerry 6 and put all their development efforts in to BBX, as the company has steadily be loosing market share since BlackBerry 6 came out. One could also say that RIM has 70 million users, many of whom use BlackBerry 6 and BlackBerry 7 devices capable of running Webworks and HTML 5 applications that will run just fine in BBX and the effort to bridge BlackBerry OS to BBX was well worth it…
What do you think?