BlackBerry OS 10.2.1 video shows proof of improved Android support

January 30, 2014
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A video of the recently released BlackBerry OS 10.2.1 running on a BlackBerry Z30 showcases the fluid integration of Android into the latest version of the OS. While things aren't exactly perfect, this might be a way out for owners who feel they've been missing out on some of the better things in the mobile life.

BlackBerry itself reported on improvements to their Android Runtime that would be coming with the latest BlackBerry OS 10.2.1. Among other things, like deeper integration with Android frameworks and features, the update allowed for easier installation and running of Android apps on a BlackBerry device. Indeed, as the video shows, Nova Launcher, installed directly via an APK, runs quite smoothly on the BlackBerry Z30 test device.

There are, of course, some limitations, as this is no native Android device. For one, it took some time for the YouTube app to launch, but once it did, it ran as normal. That is definitely better than nothing, which is exactly what BlackBerry users have when it comes to an official YouTube app. Also, there is still the lack of Google Play Store and Services, though that will definitely not stop resourceful people from getting their hands on the apps that they need.

This arrangement of running Android apps inside the BlackBerry OS might give users room to breathe, but it is definitely not an ideal situation for the BlackBerry platform itself. A mobile platform will definitely need its own set of popular native apps in order to survive, and we'll just have to wait and see if BlackBerry OS will be able to remain standing on Android crutches for long.

VIA: phoneArena


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  • k6tcher

    Can someone explain to me why anyone considering a new BB wouldn’t just go ahead and buy an Android-powered device? Is there more security, the keyboard, simple nostalgia, or something involved with a BB? I mean, a mobile OS that runs another mobile OS’s framework. Maybe if they keep trying, future BBs will run Android and inside the Android framework it will run iOS. There! BB users have it all. Oh… forgot about Windows.

    • Jeni Purcel

      You have to try a BB10 phone to see what you’re missing out on. Obviously there is something with BB10 that keeps people from moving to another platform that apps cannot replace. Currently, as the only platform that can run apps from two different OSes, there is only everything to gain. If you are thinking this might compromise security, the android apps are sandboxed and can only operate within what BB10 OS allows them to.

    • Raj

      They did try to go Android secretly but it would have cost 4 Billion dollars and BlackBerry only had 1 billion to spend on a new OS. Anyways, it is not like Android is saving any OEM from painful demise. Only Samsung is really making any coin on their phones. LG is a distant second and everyone else is competing for low end market share.

      • Jeni Purcel

        They did not try to go Android secretly. It just so happens that QNX can run Android as an app so they took advantage of it.

    • Michael Dodd

      Blackberry 10 has a universal inbox that can combine emails, SMS, messaging apps, Facebook, twitter messaging, phone calls and more. The hub makes it the best phone on the market. iOS and android are better at everything except being a phone.

  • CarlK

    Therein lies the beauty of Blackberry 10 and QNX. It now has a very intuitive and unique gesture based UI along with the best security of all the OSs along with access to most Android apps running separately from BB10 to prevent infestation of any android malware.