The Beat Goes On: report from BBJam in Amsterdam…

first BlackBerry developer conference after launch of BlackBerry10

last week I spent some days at BBJam in Amsterdam – the european BlackBerry developer conference. (some Videos are here)

same as last year: the conference was SOLD OUT with ~1500 attendees, but there was a difference:

BlackBerry 10 launched some days before in

  • New York
  • Toronto
  • Paris
  • London
  • Dubai
  • Delhi
  • Johannesburg.

This was only the first step on a global launch where other countries will follow step by step each month.


my two sessions (together with BlackBerry employees) about internationalization and invocation framework went well and there wasn’t enough time for me to attend all the sessions I was interested in so I have to study the session material later on demand.

BlackBerry 10 launched with 70K Apps and there are around 1 K new apps per day. This is a good indicator that developers are coming to the platform. For me more important then the number of apps itself is the quality of apps. I like the new ‘Built for BlackBerry‘ program, where apps are tested against UI/UX, use of platform services, battery usage and more to get the certification.

BBJam is hard work with sleepless nights, but also much fun: on tuesday evening there was the official BBJam Party with live music, food and drinks and on wednesday evening a special BBJam-After-Party with a group of Elite Partners where we enjoyed a canal cruise, some beers, dinner at ‘Bierfabrik’ in Amsterdam and more.


it’s a good feeling after so many years where others have laughed about me and my BlackBerry engagement to see that BlackBerry (the company formerly known as RIM) finally did it:

BlackBerry 10 is there !

BlackBerry 10 isn’t only a new mobile OS – it’s a new mobile platform…

… for consumers and enterprise

… for developers:

BlackBerry Developer Relations Team is great and it’s always a pleasure to work with them and to see how enthusiastic they all are about BlackBerry 10.

Alec Saunders did a great job and the cool things don’t stop:

  • at last‘ the new song for the developers
  • Alec and Martyn like a leaf in the wind
  • Chris Smith eating bugs for you

new song for the developers

One year ago Alec Saunders first time did a rock song (‘the waiting is the hardest part‘) together with the other VP’s of BlackBerry (Chris Smith and Martyn Mallick).

At dev conference in San Jose 2012 ‘keep on loving you‘ was the next one:

Hint: use setting: 720pHD

and this time Alec, Chris and Martyn rocked the stage with ‘at last‘, because BlackBerry 10 is landed:

to watch the song live – here’s the General Session Webcast:


Hint: jump to 05:20 to get the song directly

Alec and Martyn like a leaf in the wind

Alec Saunders and Martyn Mallick take a leap of faith to show their appreciation for BlackBerry developers: jumping from a tower in Las Vegas (free fall of 11 seconds)

Hint: use setting: 720pHD

Chris Smith eating bugs for developers

developers sometimes have bugs in their apps – no problem with BlackBerry Developer Relations Team: Chris Smith, Alec and Vivek ate the bugs for you 🙂


Hint: jump over to 40:00 to see this

Perhaps you can imagine what kind of fun it is to work together with BlackBerry Developer Relations Team.

It’s also fun for their own developers: 20 of them climbed Kilimandscharo while developing a charity app on their tour.

  • What else can you expect from a Developer Relations Team ?
  • Some real cool hardware ?
  • only for developers ?

here it is:

BlackBerry 10 Limited Edition for Developers

as promised by BlackBerry:

all developers staying through these hard times with BlackBerry got a DevAlpha Device to test their apps on and if an app was submitted to BlackBerry World (formerly known as BlackBerry App World) by 28th of february 2013 they will get a red BlackBerry Z10 Limited Edition:


where the Z10 is available in black or white, the Limited Edition is in red only.

removing the battery is easy:


All Elite Parners got their Limited Edition Z10 Device directly at BBJam 🙂

In Germany Z10 launch is next month and so I’m lucky (as one of BlackBerry Elite Partners) to have a real device now to test my apps on.

The difference between DevAlpha Test device and a real device: Z10 has 2 GB RAM and all the new apps on board.

My first impressions: very fluid, seamless work and I got the idea to use this device as my daily main device – but this is another story you can read about soon here.

The Beat Goes On: SDK 10.1 Beta is available

10.0 isn’t the end – it’s the beginning of the BlackBerry 10 story.


BlackBerry provided a new Beta SDK (10.1) where the primary goal is to support the Q10 – the new device with a physical keyboard coming in april into the stores worldwide.

Q10 was demonstrated at BBJam and devs could test if their apps are running on the Q10.

But not only this: there’s a new DevAlpha C device with a physical keyboard.

Attention: this is not the Q10 Consumer Device – it’s only a test device for developers – same as with DevAlpha A and B for the Touch devices.

Here’s a short summary about the differences between Z10 and Q10:

  • dpi is nearly the same (Z10 356ppi, Q10 330ppi), but screen is 1:1 aspect ratio (720×720) where the Z10 is 16:10 (768×1280) and all following touch devices are 16:9 (720×1280)
  • Z10 is LED screen and Q10 is OLED. Using OLED there are some best practices (dark theme better to avoid burn-in)
  • some UI controls are slightly smaller on Q10
  • avoid absolute layouts
  • always use a ScrollView
  • Q10 supports command keys

a really cool feature of Q10 is “Type-and-Go“: per ex. type ‘email ekke‘ opens email app and selects ekke

BlackBerry 10 Cascades Trainings (Workshops)

I expect many developers switching to this new platform – if you need training:

Workshops (in german or english)

I’m offering

The Beat Goes On: BBJam in Orlando (May 2013)

The next Developer Conferences this year in America will be – as last year – in May together with BlackBerry Live Conference (formerly known as BlackBerry World):


If you’re interested to discuss about BlackBerry App Development (Business Apps with native Cascades) or you are looking for some cool Apps – we can talk about this in Orlando or next month in Munich at MobileTechCon:


I’m speaking at MTC about different UI / UX concepts (Android 4 vs BlackBerry10) in my session ‘…and Action!‘ and on tuesday evening there’s a session about the new BlackBerry 10 Platform by Aaron Ardiri. I will also be there and answer questions about BlackBerry 10 and perhaps demo some cool things.

(c) 2013 Creative Commons License 3.0 (BY-NC-SA) by ekkescorner

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