According to BlackBerry’s CEO, Apple’s iMessage service, Netflix, and similarly more apps should be available across all major smartphone platforms. Wait, what?
BlackBerry is going through a rough patch since the iPhone and numerous Android devices took over the market, but despite taking a hit to the phones division, the company’s R&D into other areas of mobile communication continues to stay strong and innovative. As such, BlackBerry does always have something interesting to propose, or well in the case of its CEO, John Chen, something to publish.
In a blog post on BlackBerry’s own site, Chen has addressed the need for "application/content neutrality", similar to how U.S. government officials were earlier seen supporting ‘net neutrality’ as proposed by Obama and his team. In a likewise tone, Chen says that all apps as such, should be available on all platforms as well, where certain platforms should not be barred from being able to use those titles. Well, it’s no secret which particular platform is really concerning him at this point.
Chen writes, "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." While this may not actually feel so discriminatory from the user’s point of view, Chen’s opinion over Netflix may hold some weight. He writes, "Netflix, which has forcefully advocated for carrier neutrality, has discriminated against BlackBerry customers by refusing to make its streaming movie service available to them."
The trouble with Chen’s appeal here is with the not so popular response this is going to bring in from app developers, big or small, citing the fact that devs would not be interested in creating apps for unprofitable platforms. Many in the business have also suggested that as was with iOS and Android, BlackBerry should instead be focusing on creating a convincing ecosystem of its own with the new BlackBerry OS 10, thereby progressively attracting users and apps.
I myself use a BlackBerry OS 10 device, and of course the absence of a few apps does get irritating, existing users have to content with offerings that still have a long way to go to match up with their Android and iOS counterparts, such as Twitter and Facebook.