BlackBerry App World 2.0 Goes Beta

BlackBerry App World 2.0 is finally here, but only if you are a beta tester. No word yet on when this will roll out to the rest of us, but those lucky enough be a member of Research In Motion’s (RIM) BlackBerry Beta Zone have gotten their invites to play with it. Check out all the new features it offers.

-          Carrier billing and credit card billing

-          Top 25 themes and apps

-          App World Barcode Scanning

-          A single BlackBerry ID to identify your purchases

-          Easier searching

While a lot of these might seem like no brainers, remember, Apple has been spoiling us with its iTunes app store. Smartphones are the unholy marriage of 1990s PDAs and pagers. Remember how you used to load new software onto your Palm Pilot back then? Via the CD ROM you purchased and a desktop program. RIM’s App World has always been kind of stuck at this time era, as the company pretty much neglected it and saw Apple snag a massive amount of the total apps available for itself. While I certainly do not support Apple’s hard-line stance towards jailbreaking, its app store certainly is polished. This is where App World 2.0 comes in.

RIM hopes to become a player in the smartphone app world. Currently, few developers have chosen it as a platform. This is due to the fact that until this update, only PayPal was supported as a payment option. Also, BlackBerrys are notoriously difficult to develop for, with their wide variety of models. RIM did not help out either, as it neglected updating some of the tools developers relied on to make apps.

All that has started to change now, as RIM seems an excellent app buying experience exactly what it needs to jumpstart the app market for its phones. It has just built the storefront, now all it needs are the developers to set up shop and start peddling their goods. Hopefully, we see a real surge in the number and quality of the apps available for the platform.

Excited that App World 2.0 is finally here? Let me know what you think of the new features and if you are dying to get your hands on the release version.

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