With the upcoming (and much anticipated) release of the BlackBerry Q10, Android developers can now target the first qwerty-keyboard device to be released on the BlackBerry 10 mobile computing platform. The even better news for developers is that they can also port their existing BlackBerry 10 Android apps running on the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry PlayBook tablet to also include support for the BlackBerry Q10 within the same release build.
While the BlackBerry Runtime for Android Apps has a built-in screen manager which will scale the application to the screen size of the device, it’s always best to build your app specific to the device you are targeting to ensure it looks presentable to end-users.
For developers, the key difference between the BlackBerry PlayBook, BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10 would be in regard to screen sizes. The all-touch BlackBerry Z10 features a resolution of 1280 x 768 (15:9) on a 4.2-inch, 356 PPI screen. Android resources are pulled in from the res/drawable-xhdpi project folder.
The BlackBerry Q10 boasts a 330 PPI screen but with a resolution of 720 x 720 on a 3.1” screen (1:1 aspect ratio). When targeting the BlackBerry Q10, Android developers can leverage the res/drawable-small-square project folder.
In addition to the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10 models above, the BlackBerry PlayBook also supports Android apps. With a 7” screen resolution of 1024 x 600, this qualifies the BlackBerry PlayBook as an mdpi device pulling in resources from the res/drawable-mdpi project folder.
ADT Project Structure
Both the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10 support icons with a size of 114 x 114 pixels (BlackBerry PlayBook: 86 x 86 pixels) which should be placed within their respective res/drawable project folders as well. Within the same Android project you can target both of the BlackBerry 10 form factors within the same release build by following these standard Android best practices.
You can repackage your Android APK to the BlackBerry BAR file format using the new v1.5.2 SDK, and test/debug using device simulators for the BlackBerry Z10 (BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha B), BlackBerry Q10 (BlackBerry Dev Alpha C) and BlackBerry PlayBook tablet available within our Android tooling page. Other pages which you should find useful would be our documentation page for the BlackBerry Plug-in for ADT and the Android API Support page.
BlackBerry World Submission
After testing your Android application and repackaging it into the BAR file format, you can submit your app to the BlackBerry World storefront via the following steps:
- Log into the vendor portal
- Select Manage products
- Add a new release
- Set ‘supported devices’ appropriately based on BlackBerry Q10, BlackBerry Z10 and/or BlackBerry PlayBook support for your app. If the app supports more than one device you can choose to select multiple devices for the same release build (BAR file). On the contrary, you can also upload specific file bundles (BARs) for each BlackBerry 10 device.