Whatsapp has finally been launched for the first BlackBerry 10 device, the Z10. Even though it was shown as one of the available apps at the BlackBerry Z10 launch, it has not quite been ready until now.
“BlackBerry has always been about bringing people together in a way that is fast, reliable and impactful,” said, Martyn Mallick, Vice President of Global Alliances and Business Development at BlackBerry. “WhatsApp is a leading mobile messaging app that connects people to their contacts on several platforms, and we are pleased to work with WhatsApp to bring their service to our customers.”
“BlackBerry has been a great platform for WhatsApp for many years,” said Brian Acton, co-founder of WhatsApp. “Delivering WhatsApp on BlackBerry 10 devices is in line with our goals of ensuring that our customers around the world can continue to communicate with the most important people in their lives.”
In building a native application for the BlackBerry 10 platform, WhatsApp has been able to provide a better user experience that leverages the true multi-tasking capabilities of BlackBerry 10. WhatsApp Messenger for BlackBerry 10 provides a messaging experience that utilizes real-time push notifications to alert you when you receive messages- even when the screen is locked.
Fully integrated into BlackBerry Contacts, when the customer launches the app for the first time, WhatsApp can automatically scan existing phone numbers in the contact directory and extract the ones using WhatsApp, to help customers build out their contacts list and get started right away.
Right now we do not see it in the SA BlackBerry World yet, but it is apparently rolling out slowly over the next 24 hours.
You can see the app details over here: http://appworld.blackberry.com/webstore/content/2360/
As I write this, Blackberry (they are no longer being called RIM) are launching their new devices to the world. Their new Blackberry 10 OS might be innovative and their new devices look vaguely decent but I still wouldn’t buy one. I can’t exactly bash them before I’ve tried them but here’s why I’ll avoid these new Blackberry devices like the plague:
RIM (now BlackBerry) has been having a tough time of late – its phones have quickly fallen out of favour from even die-hard crackberry fans, and the competition is more stiff than ever. Users of high-end smartphones have flocked to Android and iPhone, and even enterprise customers have moved to these alternative devices.
Problem was that until now BlackBerry devices have had to do with sub-par software, poor app selection, slow browsers etc. But fans lived with these issues for the benefit of having flat-rate data in the form of BIS. But time has moved on, and the potential benefit of having flat rate data is just not relevant anymore in the high end smartphone world.
BlackBerry’s BB10 devices hope to convince users that they should give up BIS for the benefit of a completely new operating system.
More than 250 developers have registered to attend the BlackBerry 10 Jam World Tour event in Cape Town today at The Westin Grand, illustrating the high level of interest across the developer community in South Africa for creating apps for the forthcoming BlackBerry 10 platform.
To date, the tour has come to key cities across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, bringing developers around the world the latest information about BlackBerry 10 and the opportunities the new platform offers for creating apps.
RIM has transformed the developer experience with BlackBerry 10, creating an open platform to enable developers to leverage their range of existing skills, while at the same time providing them with powerful new tools to simplify the development process.
“It’s fantastic to see the level of excitement among developers for the BlackBerry 10 platform,” said Alexandra Zagury, Managing Director for South Africa and Southern Africa at BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion. “Whether developers choose to develop HTML5 apps or native apps, our environment will enable them to use their best skills to quickly create apps with great user experiences.” (more…)