The Best of BlackBerry Runtime for Android Apps 2012

Android Development

Guest post from Android runtime development man about town James Dreher – Ed.


The past twelve months have been an absolute whirlwind for the team behind the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps. While work on this endeavor began long before this year, 2012 marked the year that Android developers were able to bring their offerings over to the BlackBerry platform in a quick and simple fashion.

It’s hard to believe how far the Android story on BlackBerry has come over the last year, which makes me even more excited for what we’ll have to offer our developers in 2013. Below are my top-five 2012 milestones for the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps team.

February 21st – PlayBook 2.0 Release

The BlackBerry PlayBook 2.0 OS update not only added native PIM support, but the launch of the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps. Android developers now had the opportunity to target a whole new platform with their pre-existing apps, by simply repackaging and signing them.

May 3rd – BlackBerry 10 Beta SDK Launch

At our BlackBerry World conference in Orlando, we released BlackBerry 10 into its official developer beta program. This allowed us to keep rolling out updates to our tooling to include additional API support as we added them to the runtime itself. We openly shared our progress throughout the beta program via our flight-arrival board for the Android Runtime roadmap.

October 3rd – PlayBook 2.1 OS Update

In October we were able to release an update of the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps which coincided with the much anticipated PlayBook 2.1 OS update. This update allowed us to offer our Android developers the opportunity to utilize in-app billing, access to both the front and rear-facing cameras, and an improved end-user experience with each Android app running within its own window.

October 4th – Developer Experience Day

Probably our most fun day this year was getting members from each spectrum of our Android team into the same room to do a complete top-to-bottom review of our developer experience. The tooling, runtime, documentation, relations and management teams were all well represented along with developers who were brand new to the offering. We were able to collaborate on how we can make the process even easier and accessible for developers to port their Android offerings to BlackBerry 10. Most of these improvements have already been made today, with certain long-term goals being planned for a 2013 release.

December 11th – BlackBerry 10 Gold SDK

The culmination of all the hard work our team has put in this past year was evident when the BlackBerry 10 SDKs reached their Gold release. As nice as it was to have reached this particular milestone, work is well underway for our next update to the BlackBerry Runtime for Android apps.

Thanks for swinging by our blog this last year and giving us the feedback we value. Your success as a developer is our own success as a platform, so we certainly value your input. Be sure to keep referencing the blog in 2013 for all of your Android-related information for BlackBerry 10, and of course, have a great holiday season!

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