BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011: What You May Have Missed!

Dev Con

Alec Saunders at BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011

Wow! BlackBerry® DevCon Americas 2011 was one heck of a busy week for the Developer Relations team, and we’re sure the same thing can be said for attendees. BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 featured: an action-packed general session keynote; oodles of announcements (see below); App Express stations for Android™ developers to quickly get their apps ported to the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet; recognition awards for outstanding BlackBerry developers; Breakout and Ask the Experts sessions for one-on-one time with BlackBerry development experts; special BBM™ Hackathon events just for BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 attendees; and our biggest BlackBerry DevCon TweetUp ever! Oh, and did I forget to mention we gave every attendee a free BlackBerry PlayBook tablet with the option to load the BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0 Developer Beta build?

For those who were unable to attend BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 in person, here’s a brief overview of some of the DevCon-related announcements you’ll want to catch up on.

Announcing BlackBerry BBX – The Next Generation BlackBerry Platform – BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 introduced BlackBerry BBX, the next generation mobile platform for BlackBerry smartphones and tablets. Development environments supported by the BBX platform include HTML5 with BlackBerry® WebWorks™, Adobe® AIR®, Native C/C++, and the BlackBerry® Runtime for Android™ Apps. Click the link above to learn more; BlackBerry developers will also want to read this outlining the developer roadmap for BlackBerry BBX and the BlackBerry® Java® SDK.

Announcing Cascades: UI Development for BlackBerry Apps – In addition to BlackBerry BBX, BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 also showed Cascades, a UI (“user interface”) framework built by RIM TAT to help developers build fluid and compelling UI into their applications.

BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0 Developer Beta: Android Runtime, WebWorks, Adobe AIR – Developers who didn’t attend BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 are still able to download the BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0 Developer Beta at the link above. In addition to the BlackBerry Runtime for Android Apps, the Developer Beta also includes support for the latest BlackBerry WebWorks and Adobe AIR SDKs for developers to test their latest and greatest apps.

Introducing BlackBerry Jam – No matter if you’re a BlackBerry WebWorks, Java, Adobe AIR or native BlackBerry PlayBook tablet developer, you’ll want to pay attention to the new BlackBerry® program, designed to help developers collaborate and innovate together. Victoria wrote a great post about the BlackBerry Jam program, which you can check out at the link above, but don’t hesitate to stop by the BlackBerry Jam developer page.

Key BlackBerry Development Tools Updates – In addition to the announcements above, tons of new and updated tools are available to BlackBerry developers to get building. Check them out below!

Native SDK for BlackBerry Tablet OS General Availability Release
BBM Social Platform SDK v1.0 for BlackBerry WebWorks General Availability Release
BlackBerry WebWorks SDK for Smartphone v2.2 Now Available
BlackBerry Java SDK and JDE v7.0 Maintenance Release Now Available for Download
Open Source and the BlackBerry PlayBook OS Platform

If it’s a cool visual overview you’re looking for, check out this BlackBerry DevCon Americas 2011 highlights video:

[ YouTube link for mobile viewing ]

Like I said before, wow! So what’s next? Well, BlackBerry DevCon Asia and BlackBerry DevCon Europe are right around the corner, so stay tuned for more blog posts on the Inside BlackBerry Developer’s Blog. We hope to see you there!

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