Blackberry has struck a deal with Amazon to allow Blackberry 10 users to download and run Android apps via the Amazon App Store, from version 10.3.
Blackberry’s deal with Amazon will bring 240,000 Android applications to the Blackberry platform after the 10.3 update, including Groupon, Netflix, Pinterest and the time-sucking CandyCrush Saga. The deal will also see Blackberry realign its application development strategy, from consumer to security and corporate.
It was already possible to install Android applications onto Blackberry 10 devices from the very release of the platform, although this initially required the use of a third-party Chrome plugin. The Blackberry 10.2 update changed that by adding the ability to install Android applications directly onto the device.
Despite that, neither Google nor Amazon have opened up their Android app stores to the Blackberry platform. Blackberry 10 users had to settle for the official Blackberry application marketplace – The Blackberry App World – or Snap, which was an Android app store of sorts. But now, thanks to the Amazon deal, the world of Android apps has been chucked open wide.
Blackberry will also engage with its developer community, to help developers migrate their apps to the Amazon Appstore in preparation for the BB 10.3 launch.
The ailing smartphone manufacturer launched Blackberry 10 back at the very start of 2013, but the platform has since suffered from a lack of applications and a disappointing consumer uptake, despite several tech publications pointing out its potential and giving it positive reviews.