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RIM Extending Free Developer PlayBook Offer Until April 19th?


It looks like RIM is extending their free BlackBerry PlayBook for developers offer yet again. I think this is a great move by RIM though I have not seen the change reflected on the RIM website yet. Long time reader Marc received an email today stating:

The BlackBerry developer community has already begun developing and submitting applications for the BlackBerry® PlayBook™. Registered developers who submit a qualifying BlackBerry® PlayBook™ app that is accepted into BlackBerry App World™ prior to the initial product launch in North America (April 19th) will receive a free BlackBerry® PlayBook™. Learn how to qualify for the free BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet offer.

I am not sure if RIM changed their qualifications for the offer anymore but I expect we will hear from them soon. I think this is a brilliant move on RIM’s part because it will net them many more than the 100 or so Android 3.0 HoneyComb tablet apps available now.

Keep an eye out on BerryReview for updates!

24 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. That might just be long enough for me to figure out how to build an app!

  2. I think that the submission dates are still the same (as in March 31st as the last day for first submission). The final date to qualify for the free tablet, however, is April 19th. So far, the actual wording on the RIM / Blackberry Playbook offer page hasn’t changed and while I would be hoping it will, I can understand if the guys (and girls) over at RIM stick to their original plan.

    • I found that a bit confusing myself. The email is also worded differently, seeming to imply that the app must be approved by 4/19 — so it doesn’t directly mention the submission date.

      On the other hand, we don’t know what the approval turnaround time is.

      Hopefully they’ll be clarifying it soon either way…

  3. It says on RIM’s initial contest rules “Research In Motion Limited (“Sponsor”) reserves the right to extend the Offer Period by giving five (5) days notice.” Which makes me think its a bit beyond being able to be extended. It ends at “(5) days notice” so I’m not 100% sure if that’s 5 days notice of the March 31st contest ending or??

    You can view that under the “Offer Period”

  4. Yeah I heard this too. So when did they remove the charge for developer registration? It seems it is free now.

  5. How do you figure getting Honeycomb Apps? I thought the Playbook would only do Android 2.3 apps??

  6. That would be sweet!

  7. Too bad Adobe Air is absolutely useless. It’s not even close to powerful enough to create anything worthwhile. Maybe some flash games I guess.

    • The materials needed to create worthwhile apps are generally between your ears; the tools to implement them are a secondary consideration. I posit that a worthwhile developer can make a worthwhile app in almost any language.

      • And you would be wrong. Adobe Air has some very serious limitations. The main example being the lack of threads or the ability to create custom async functions. Without going into too much detail as to overwhelm you, this means everything is running on the same thread as your GUI. Anyone for an hour glass? Or a similar busy animation. Adobe Air isn’t new and there’s a reason it hasn’t been adopted by developers.

        • The fact that the issues exist doesn’t change my sentiment though – worthwhile apps can be made with minimal tools. There was a time not that long ago when multi-threading and async functions were practically unused in UI applications. (And seriously if you look at a lot BB and android apps out there now, you can see that a large number of clueless developers *still* fail to use them.)

          The only serious limitations I see in that list are socket access (workaround: proxy via another system) and threading. The rest listed seem to be centered around accessing external functionality: nice, but not critical. And in the case of Playbook, that’s not entirely true. The library has been extended with access into PB functions and events.

          “Without going into too much detail as to overwhelm you”

          Ultimately, looking at a tool and saying “this is no good” is a lot easier than looking at a tool and saying “how can I make what I want in spite of the fact that it’s crap?”

          Sometimes the answer is a combination of making due and tempering expectations. But if you want to develop something and those are the tools at hand, you make do — because the answer to the question above is only rarely “Nope, can’t be done”.

          Well, I reckon I asked for that given the tone of my initial reply. We’ll call it even 😉

          • (Damn, I really wish we had comment editing here :) . Out-of sequence:

            “Without going into too much detail as to overwhelm you”
            Well, I reckon I asked for that given the tone of my initial reply. We’ll call it even 😉

          • I’m not buying the “not long ago … were practically unused …”. Yes, but you also have to acknowledge that we’re doing a lot more with our devices than we once were and applications are multitudes more complex than they used to be. My main problem here is that a “Professional Grade” tablet is launching with seemingly no ability to create “Professional Grade” applications.

            I agree one should look at it as “how can I create what I want”. Unfortunately unless you want to create a widget or flash game you won’t be able to find an answer.

            RIM should have had the C stuff ready or at the very least the Java BlackBerry App integration. Adobe really hasn’t shown any desire to add the functionality needed to create powerful applications with Air.

            Now when the native apis are ready you’ll see some stuff coming out where C is handling the actual legwork and Air can be limited to GUI. But until then this PlayBook offer is basically useless as we’re not going to see anything overly intriguing come out. And from a developers point of view it’s a bit ridiculous to wave it in front of us.


        Heres a little read for you. 2008 but basically all problems still apply.

  8. I wonder if I have time to get an app submitted. I had an idea for an app but hadn’t found time to write it. I still may not find the time, but at least now I might have incentive to make the time.

  9. Hi all,
    Initial contact from RIM is telling me that the PlayBook offer is not extended. Looks like that might be the case but then what were they trying to say with:

    “Registered developers who submit a qualifying BlackBerry® PlayBook™ app that is accepted into BlackBerry App World™ prior to the initial product launch in North America (April 19th) will receive a free BlackBerry® PlayBook™.”

  10. RIM has clarified that the free PlayBook offer has not been extended past today, March 31, 2011. Read below;

    We sent you a message on Wednesday, March 30th inviting you to visit Partner Sphere for available BlackBerry PlayBook Developer Resources. The communication included mention of the Free BlackBerry PlayBook Offer.

    We would like to clarify that the deadline to qualify for a free BlackBerry PlayBook through the special Free BlackBerry PlayBook Offer that is open to all app developers is today, March 31st.
    For more information on this offer, please visit

    As always, we attempt our best to provide you with timely and accurate information and we apologize for any inconvenience or misunderstanding this may have caused. We encourage you to begin or continue your development of BlackBerry PlayBook applications to get access to a large and growing market of both business and personal users.

    Yesterday’s message is below for your reference.

    Please feel free to contact us should you have any questions.


    BlackBerry Alliance Team

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