I am not sure what to make of this one. When Luis first told me about it earlier today I did a double take. I know that Amail was “under review” perpetually but that app was at least a clear violation of the SDK license that says you cannot create an email app. Sad but at least understandable. Things get a lot weirder when it comes to long time BlackBerry developer Shape Services. We found out back in mid April that IM+ multi network instant messaging client was coming to the PlayBook and even had an approximate price point at $19.95 along with a May scheduled release.
The thing is Shape submitted IM+ to RIM in App World back on May 19th. That is just shy of 2 months ago! I realize that it might take up to a week to get an app reviewed but 2 months without hearing back from RIM is ridiculous. When Luis pointed it out this morning I immediately reached out to RIM but I have not heard a word back. I was hoping they would simply say it was a mistake and the app would be available. No such luck.
This has prompted Shape to post about it on Google+ throwing their hands in the air. RIM literally cannot allow these key apps to fall through the cracks like this. Even if they are not going to approve it at least communicate with a long time BlackBerry dev. I have been hearing rumblings for awhile that RIM is working on streamlining the App World review house team but maybe they simply need to get off their lazy… I know I submitted two apps for other devs that took almost 2 weeks to get approved but at least that was back before the device launched. With IM+, an app that could really do well on the PlayBook, this is simply unacceptable.
This is why I am very against RIM’s new concept of keeping App World as the only way to get apps on the BlackBerry PlayBook without the user unfriendly sideloading process. THIS is one of many reasons why RIM should simply allow apps to install through the browser. Its one of the best features of BlackBerry phones that they have denied the PlayBook.
So RIM the ball is in your court. Even if we are only hearing one side of the story this shouldn’t even be an issue in the first place. RIM justifies using App World as the only platform for distributing PlayBook apps to help developers centralize. It wasn’t meant to hold developers hostage, stop them from beta testing, and make developing for the PlayBook a hassle…
Thanks to everyone who sent this in.