Apps are a huge part of any mobile platform, and has been a sore point for RIM, which has lagged far behind the competition in the size of its app library. But RIM says its working to improve that with its new BlackBerry App World store for BlackBerry 10.
BlackBerry App World is getting a much needed face-lift with BlackBerry 10. During a stage demo, RIM execs showed off the app store’s new interface. It looks fairly similar to the Google’s Play Store with users scrolling through a vertical list of apps.
The main screen, features a horizontal scroll bar through which users can check out trending apps. From the look of it, the store will be much easier to navigate than the current BlackBerry App World store, relying heavily on BlackBerry 10’s new Flow interface.
With BlackBerry 10, App World is adding some much needed variety to the types of content users have access to, including music, movies and television shows. BlackBerry execs say that users will be able to download this content directly to their devices rather than stream it from the web. Like Apple’s iTunes and Google’s Play Store, BlackBerry App World allows users to purchase music, movies and TV shows, as well as rent movies.
Content providers haven’t been announced yet, so we don’t know which studios or record labels will make their content available through BlackBerry App World. RIM was also mum on pricing for the new content, although we expect it to be in line with what Apple and Google charge for their content.
The first app RIM showed off was its new Facebook app for BlackBerry 10. From what was show, the app is essentially a clone of what you get on Android or iOS.
That said, interactions should improved thanks to RIM’s Flow interface. The app also appeared to run very fast during the demo, although we don’t know if it was running natively on the Developer Kit that was being used or it it was actually connected to the web.
The success of Blackberry 10 is very much contingent on how many apps RIM can fill its new BlackBerry World Store with. Apple and Android have a huge lead on the fledgling operating system and even Windows Phone 8 has surpassed it. If RIM can offer users a compelling app library when its operating system launches, it could be on its way to restoring its name in the mobile market.