BlackBerry launches app store in UAE

The much-awaited Blackberry’s new dedicated mobile applications store would start operations in the UAE from Sunday.

The store would open the flood gates of a new app world to the Blackberry enthusiasts and sharpen the battle in the fiercely competitive smart phone market.

“Blackberry App World will provide easy access to a broad range of mobile applications and content, everything from entertainment to news and even utilities and has been developed with the user experience firmly in mind,” the Gulf News quoted Sandeep Saihgal, managing director, RIM Middle East, as saying.

A recent Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRA) survey had indicated that BlackBerry is the preferred smart phone of choice in the UAE — especially among young tech-savvy Emiratis — for its encrypted BlackBerry Messenger service (BBM), and the launch of its app store in the UAE will allow the Canadian giant to keep its hold in the smart phone market some more time.

According to the survey, BlackBerries are the most commonly used devices to access the internet in the UAE - approximately 37 per cent of the time - compared to iPhone which was used to access internet services 16 per cent of the time.

RIM sold 47.4 million smartphones globally in 2010 followed closely by Apple which sold 46.6 million iPhones, said global tech-research firm Gartner earlier this year. Total Middle East and Africa sales of mobile phones reached 155 million in 2010.
 

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