RIM: No Android Apps or Flash for BlackBerry 7


ORLANDO—It looks like BlackBerry fans will have to wait for the new QNX operating system, and new phones, to enjoy some of the flagship features from the BlackBerry Playbook on their phones.

Phones running BlackBerry OS 7, such as the new BlackBerry Bold 9900, will not get Android apps, even though RIM is developing an Android virtual machine for the PlayBook and Android’s Dalvik VM is relatively similar to RIM’s Java system, a RIM executive said at BlackBerry World today.

Flash is also off the table, RIM execs said, adding that they’re focusing on the new QNX OS to support Adobe Flash in the Web browser—even though the new BlackBerry Bold 9900′s 1.2-Ghz processor fulfills Adobe’s hardware requirements for Flash.

Phone owners will need to buy new devices to experience the new OS, as the new OS will only run on dual-core devices and RIM has no dual-core phones, said Andrew Bocking, RIM’s vice president of handheld software product management.

RIM is working towards producing a brand-new operating system for phones, based on the same QNX core that the company uses on its PlayBook tablet. But that OS seems nowhere near ready; on an investor conference call, RIM CEO Jim Balsillie said to expect the OS early next year, and back in January, CEO Mike Lazaridis told us we’d hear more about that OS later this year.

It looks like development energies at RIM are already shifting to the QNX platform, though, if RIM isn’t working hard at moving cutting-edge PlayBook features back to its existing phone OS. The risk, though, is that BlackBerry OS 7 becomes a bit of an orphaned platform, with developers and consumers waiting to see what comes down the pike next.

To counter that perception, RIM intends to promote a range of “under the hood” features for new OS 7 devices here at BlackBerry World, an exec told me. That includes hardware graphics acceleration, which would enable much better games and multimedia apps, as well as a range of new sensors including a compass.

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This post was submitted by prashant agarwal.

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