There have been increaing demands for Ringful Health to make our applications available to BlackBerry users. That makes sense — many health-conscious mobile-savvy users are executives in companies. And they all have company issued BlackBerries.
But for mobile app developers, BlackBerry brings back the old nightmare of “device fragmentation”, which, by the way, is happening to Android as well. There are many BlackBerry device models and OS versions, each supporting different screen sizes, hardware accessories (eg camera, GPS), API availability, input methods etc etc. That forces developers to either go to lowest common denominator with bare bone apps that run on all devices, or release a different version of the app for each device.
So, while we are working on BlackBerry versions of our apps, we are really interested in finding out where the “common denominator” is. Is it sufficient for us to target BlackBerry OS 4.6 and above? Or, do we really need to go all the way to OS 4.2 or even OS 4.0? Do we need to release a seperate app for touch screen BlackBerry devices? Can we rely on the BlackBerry AppWorld to distribute our app?
If you are a BlackBerry user, please help out by answering a few quick questions. I think the statistics will help all developers understand the BlackBerry landscape and eventually lead to better apps on BlackBerry.
If you know published statistics of the questions, please leave a comment to this blog entry. Thanks!