We may not see RIM's next-gen OS BB10 for a few months yet, but the BlackBerry-maker is already bigging up its app skills.
BB10 will have more apps at launch than any other mobile operating system, according to RIM's vice president of developer relations and ecosystem development, Alec Saunders, who spoke to our sister site CNET News. The bad news? That might not be anthing to boast about.
Saunders concedes iOS and Android's app stores were practically nonexistent when the operating systems launched, which leaves Microsoft's Windows Phone OS as the frontrunner. Its magic number is 7,000 apps -- that's according to Nokia at the launch of the Lumia 920 this week.
With iOS and Android firmly established as the two big mobile operating systems, RIM will be vying with Microsoft for third place. So it's no wonder it's keen to take its rival down a peg or two. Microsoft also did some creative accounting last year to work out that Windows Phone's Marketplace had more apps than BlackBerry's App World.
Recently, RIM was keen to stress just how many apps have been downloaded for BlackBerry devices -- 3 billion, according to the BlackBerry Developer blog. Its App World store now has 90,000 apps for sale.
That's all well and good, but RIM has some serious catching up to do. Its BB10 OS has been delayed more times than I care to remember, with the latest launch estimate being early next year. RIM has been forced to consider some last-resort options, including splitting in two or even joining forces with Microsoft. If the latter did happen, I'm guessing all the crowing about app counts would stop pretty sharpish.
The company roadmap leaked recently too, with two BB10 handsets on the way, as well as a 10-inch tablet named Blackforest, and a 4G PlayBook. With Everything Everywhere poised to unfurl 4G all over this fair and pleasant land imminently, that could be a real boon to RIM's fortunes.
Are you excited about BB10? What does it need to do to win you back? Let me know in the comments, or on Facebook.