Slew of BlackBerry developer announcements

Shortly after my laptop battery died during the Day 2 BlackBerry Developer Conference keynote liveblog, a bunch of press releases went out that are good news not only for BlackBerry developers, but also you fine folks who use their apps.

  • RIM to Launch BlackBerry Application Storefront and BlackBerry Application Center: We saw this one coming a mile away, but whatever. They’re accepting submissions for this device-side, carrier-powered software store in December and looking to launch in March. Butting heads with the iPhone? Maybe. They made a point to say during the announcement that criteria for acceptance into the store would be made very clear, so folks wouldn’t spend months on an application and still worry if it will even get by the gatekeepers.
  • RIM Takes Push to a New Level with BlackBerry Web Signals Technology for Third Party Content Services: Just around the tail end of the liveblog, I hinted at AccuWeather demoing this. Basically, it revolved around the homescreen icon changing depending on the weather in your area. In this way Web Signals will allow online content to affect and change handheld software. Push technology is RIM’s game, and now they’re giving it developers.
  • RIM Updates BlackBerry Developer Tools: The tail end of the keynote revolved around of the more technical side of things, primarily in updates to the Eclipse and Visual Studio Plug-ins for the BlackBerry Java Desktop Environment. One feature from the Eclipse plug-in got noticeable applause, but damned I knew what the fuss was.
  • RIM to Bring the Power of the Web to BlackBerry Application Development: Updates to the same ol’ software is nice and all, but Gears (due in 2009) and Web IDE are some new tools RIM has announced today. Will be talking with plenty of programmers on the scene here to see what their reactions are like.

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