BlackBerry App World is Here!

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Drew Rattray
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BlackBerry App World is Here!

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for blackberry_app_world.jpgThey missed their March 2009 launch by a day, but who cares... it's here.  RIM and BlackBerry® take their next step in the ongoing competition with Apple and the iPhone.  Finally an application store for our BlackBerry's, which is something I've been envious of that iPhone users have been waggling in front of my face for a while now.

If you have a PayPal account, and if your BlackBerry smartphone meets the system requirements, then you're ready to start. BlackBerry App World is available for free and can be downloaded simply by visiting www.blackberry.com/appworld/download from your smart phone.

It looks like all purchases from the App World (be careful not to say "Store"...) go through your PayPal account, making payment quick, easy, and secure.  If you don't have a PayPal account, visit PayPal now to get started.

Included in the list of their featured apps for the launch of the app world is Bloomberg Mobile, Slacker Radio, ICQ, HRS Hotel Organizer, Livestrong, Brain Challenge 2: Stress Management, Salesforce, and more.

One disclamer however, BlackBerry App World is only available to customers in US, Canada and UK and may not be available on all networks.

My first impression?  Convenient but buggy.  In order to get it working on my Storm, I of course had to reboot after installing.  Also the first app I tried to download, "Level", keeps giving me an error message.  However, everything else seems fine so far.

When you first load up the application, it takes you to a Featured Items area that you can scroll across to view the title, a little description, an image of the application button, and a 5 star rating system for each. Currently they are featuring 14 applications in this area and I'm not sure if this number will fluctuate in the future.

At the bottom is a simple menu with a Categories tab, a Top Downloads tab, a Search tab, and a My World tab.  Inside the Categories Tab is 13 separate categories with a count of available applications next to it.  Here's the current list:

  • Entertainment (19)
  • Games (119)
  • Maps & navigation (5)
  • Music & Videos (10)
  • News & Weather (16)
  • Personal Finance & Banking (10)
  • Personal health & Wellness (9)
  • Productivity & Utilities (103)
  • Professional & business (12)
  • Reference & eBooks (32)
  • Social Networking &Sharing (18)
  • Sports & Recreation (36)
  • Travel (10)
It looks to be a total of 399 apps at launch.  Not too bad. The Top Downloads tab and the Search tab are fairly self explanatory. The My World tab takes you to an area that is basically a list of what you've downloaded from the App World.

There's not too much in free applications right now, but you're sure to find them filling out the Top Downloads tab for a while.  I'll keep you updated if I find any gems.
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