Will new easy Android application installation help BlackBerry 10?

Summary:BlackBerry is rolling out the 10.2.1 update for its devices and along with the update comes support for OTA installation of Android APKs.

Will new easy Android application installation help BlackBerry 10?
Image: BlackBerry

As a fan of MeeGo and the N9 as well as webOS, I actually enjoy using BlackBerry 10 devices. The lack of applications is primarily why I don't use it much, but with the latest BlackBerry 10.2.1 update that issue may be resolved.

As detailed over at CrackBerry.com this new update supports over-the-air (OTA) installs of Android applications (APKs). Previously you had to jump through several hoops, while also having access to a limited number of applications, to sideload Android apps.

I understand that you can now install most any Android app that you can find an APK for. If you are currently an Android smartphone user, you can actually backup all of your apps to a PC and then easily find the APKs for your current device. If you don't have an Android device, you can find APKs online or even install the Amazon App Store to get Android apps. I will soon be dusting off the Z10 and Q10 to install the update and see how well my favorite Android apps run on BlackBerry 10.

While it is easier than before to get Android apps, it still requires people to find APKs and that may make this support helpful primarily to smartphone enthusiasts and those who like to tinker a bit with their phones.

I doubt we will see BlackBerry 10 sales increase with this new OTA install capability and support for some of the latest Android apps, but it may help some current users stick with the platform. Any readers try this out yet? If so, how are the Android apps performing?

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Topics: Mobility, BlackBerry, Smartphones

About

Matthew Miller started using a mobile devices in 1997 and has been writing news, reviews, and opinion pieces ever since. He is a co-host with GigaOM's Kevin Tofel on the MobileTechRoundup podcast and an author of three Wiley Companion series books. Matthew started using mobile devices with a US Robotics Pilot 1000 and has owned over 200 d... Full Bio

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