RIM waves cash at developers ahead of BlackBerry 10 launch

Research In Motion is guaranteeing earnings of $10,000 for any BlackBerry 10 app that is submitted before the platform's launch and that pulls in at least $1,000 on its own during its first year of release
Written by David Meyer, Contributor

Research In Motion has moved to attract developers to its BlackBerry 10 platform ahead of its launch by guaranteeing certain mediocre performers thousands of dollars in free cash.

The $10K Developer Commitment, unveiled on Tuesday, will ensure that developers earn at least $10,000 (£6,307) for each app, as long as they pull in at least $1,000 in actual revenue — including in-app payments — during the app's first year of release.

BlackBerry 10
RIM is hoping to attract developers to its BlackBerry 10 OS. Image credit: Ben Woods

For apps to qualify, they will need to be submitted to App World before BlackBerry 10 launches early next year. The precise launch dates are still to be announced.

"With the $10K Developer Commitment, we're putting our money where our mouth is," RIM spokesman Alex Kinsella said in a blog post. "We know our dev community is the best out there, and we're as committed to your success as you are."

There are a couple of catches: the apps in question will each have to have at least 100 unique downloads over the course of the 12 months, and there is a capped $10m "fund pool" for the scheme.

Kinsella also revealed a new quality assurance scheme for BlackBerry 10 apps, called Built for BlackBerry.

RIM has used the same name in the past, most recently as a mark of approval for BlackBerry and PlayBook accessories. The new 'Built for BlackBerry' programme is closer to that launched in 2007 as a download hub for third-party apps.

Under the new scheme, developers who have already had their apps accepted for sale on BlackBerry App World will be able to submit those apps up to three times to get a special badge of quality, which will be displayed in that storefront and in marketing literature.

Both WebWorks and native apps could qualify. That said, the rules for Built for BlackBerry suggest rather fuzzy criteria for the possible revocation of those quality marks.

"A 'Built for BlackBerry' designation could be revoked if issues arise, either by RIM or by users, and are not resolved in a timely manner," the rules state. "Failing to do so may result in revocation of the Built for BlackBerry designation."

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