04-16-2014 11:44 AM
Mark, you must have pressed Post too soon, because it seems like you missed all the other questions asked in this thread.
Did you hit the wrong key or are you actually ignoring us and hoping we go away?
04-16-2014 11:51 AM - edited 04-16-2014 11:57 AM
I have the same feeling. Not to mention, most of my AIR apps require the BlackBerry API's to interact outside of the Android sandbox.
Secure Antivirus, Secure Browser, Night Ports - all will be directly killed by this change.
Games I have that are AIR based, I have tested before in pre 10.2, and actually I never was able to get AIR Android converted BAR files to even work on BlackBerry. So I'm not expecting much (if any) of this will work. And I still doubt it has ever been tested.
My plan is to currently add a pop-up message to all 80 applications on execution once 10.3 OS is released - advising the 50-100k odd active users to email developer relations on this issue.
If they won't pay for licensing. At least I can make sure they spend the same on support costs - we aren't getting answers ourselves and have to innovate.
If BlackBerry doesn't want my apps - that's fine, but I'm not going to let my users blame me for this mess of a decision. For now I'm letting the topic drop from my side - I won't convince BlackBerry to do the right thing. So instead I'm going to start building my empire away from BlackBerry - I don't want to be building for a platform that kills its own SDK's, IDE's and Applications after 2 years to save a few dollars. I've never seen that happen on M$, Android or iOS. But at least they gave me 6 months notice to start moving over.
04-16-2014 11:55 AM
04-16-2014 12:35 PM
04-16-2014 01:12 PM
The app id mapping is the big issue, even if you could port to Android and them back to BB. Boy the user is going to be upset if they have to pay for the "same" app twice.
You can keep these the same. Details are here: Upgrading an Application Using Different Languages
I am reading every post in this thread and answering what I can. If there are any technical questions I've missed please ask again. We will do our best to help you overcome any technical hurdles you encouter during this transition.
As for the questions around why support is being removed, unfortunetly those I can't comment on. Those details are confidential between BlackBerry and Adobe.
04-16-2014 01:57 PM - edited 04-16-2014 02:06 PM
> You can keep these the same. Details are here: Upgrading an Application Using Different Languages
When was the last time you tried those instructions for a paid application?
> I am reading every post in this thread and answering what I can. If there are any technical questions I've missed please ask again. We will do our best to help you overcome any technical hurdles you encouter during this transition. As for the questions around why support is being removed, unfortunetly those I can't comment on. Those details are confidential between BlackBerry and Adobe.
Funny, this is a support forum for developers right? Regarding you having maybe missed a "technical question" or two - how come I see a ton of questions you haven't answered? If you can't answer them, can you find someone that can?
I've gone ahead and made a list of the questions you've "skipped" - but I'm only doing this once and kind of just to make a point.
Obvious unanswerd questions from me
1) Where do we send customers who want to file a complaint? I need to direct 100,000 emails somewhere.
2) Changing com.xyz does not address the Package ID hash issue, nor is it customizable for Android apps - your solutions invalid as we keep telling you. How are you planning this for an AIR > Android paid app and when did you last test this?
3) Your telling us not to build for BlackBerry any more and to build for Android, and one day port them to BlackBerry. Do you realize that by building for Android, your pushing us to a larger platform with more money? Is that the official suggestion you really want to make?
4) When can we expect 10.3.1?
5) Have you tested performance differences for AIR APK's, where are the stats and information?
6) Have you personally tested both scenarios? Manually porting an app to Cascades/WebWorks for a large app (>1000 lines) and APK to AIR for paid apps - and successfully post them into AppWorld as a replacement BAR? Because I am certain this will fail..
7) Who is paying developers to rewrite all their apps using Cascades / WebWorks? Or to reprogram all their applications to exclude BlackBerry API's?
8) If you just killed the first QNX driven API after 2 years - completely off the platform. What confidence do we have you aren't going to do the same to WebWorks or Cascades tomorrow? What assurances do we have that we should even still build using BlackBerry API's?
9) Why have your teams been pushing us to use BlackBerry API's for BFB apps in AIR if you are going to kill it? Developers have complained about this and how it is unncessary for the last year and a half.
10) Is BlackBerry running out of money? Is that why they are abandoning 1/3 of the applications on their platform?
11) What incentives are you offering PlayBook developers who were forced to build with AIR originally, only to be ignored now by BlackBerry? Are you offering to help in some way?
12) What is your Android APK solution for applications that need to operate outside of the Android sandbox
Quoted as-is from other messages - I'm only doing this once, you will have to put in effort to do this yourself next time Mark as I think your free ride of this developer doing any kind of favours for you (or BlackBerry) for free ends here
13) it actually even possible to port our applications to Android (or WebWorks for that matter) and keep the existing ratings / allow existing users to upgrade to the ported apps? i.e. will they be able to use the same application id's etc.? Or will they have to pay again?
14) Will all apps built on AIR lose the Built for BlackBerry status
15) When is BB 10.3 being released? i.e. how long do we have?
16) Support for Google Play Payment API v3 would be nice for future development (makes sense, as you are abandoning us from a BlackBerry perspective)
17) Mark, when you drop a bomshell like this, YOU NEED TO GIVE US AT LEAST AN INKLING OF A TIMELINE for 10.3.1!!!!!!
18) As a developer and a user of BB10, I feel really sorry for all the great apps that will be gone and for all the stress that the developers will face. (To this point, are you being transparent with users that you will be killing a large volume of apps?)
19) Wow, do you know how many **bleep** off users there will be from this? (Good point, How many AIR apps are you killing? Keep in mind, my impact is going to be above 100k users that I am sending to you to complain)
20) They should at least for BB10 captive runtime (not via APK) (To this point, if you are killing SDK's for developing - thats fine. But why would you kill AIR support completely for BBRY and leave it for Android? Does that not give Android developers another advantage over BBRY?).
21) Hi. which is the highest version Adobe Air that supports the Android BB runtime?
22) ... as an user, I'm a bit worried about what will happen to flash content inside the browser.
23) You are not just condemning us, you are condemning all of the clients that have already paid for those apps. (Any comments here from BlackBerry or just silence?)
24) Do you really think that 3 years of improvements can be completely moved to a new platform? C'mon
25) Are you kidding Mark? Apps using BB10 Air SDK can't be ported! BfB apps can't be ported. Apps with BB10 look&feel can't be ported. (Any comments on this either?)
26) I've downloaded AIR SDK last week to port my game. Now I'm dissapointed and I'm not sure if I should continue in porting. Isn't it waste of time?
27) What about performance? Is it same/worse/better?
28) What about native extensions?
29) You simply can't offer a development platform one minute, have developers invest time and money in codebases, only to have the rug pulled out from under their feet. (Again, no comment?)
30) Unfortunately the in-app purchase APIs are kindof critical to the profitability of my apps...
31) If I use a native extension for Android, like social-sharing, to share Facebook/Twitter, will it work? (eg: GoViral)
32) Will Android Ad-SDK's like AdColony, Vungle, or Everyplay work on BB10?
33) How are we supposed to implement IAP's?
34) Will CameraRoll, saveToCameraRoll and all that, continue to work?
35) Will my apps have as much exposure as normal BB10 Apps? Is it transparent tot he user that it is an Android app?
36) Is there an ETA on 10.3 that we can schedule against?
37) An ETA would be a good thing to have. A very, very good thing.
38) It would be good to get a compelling technical explanation from BlackBerry as to why the existing runtime and dependent apps could not just be left in a legacy state in future BB10 releases. Does it take up too much storage space?
39) AIR devs who don't "migrate" on BlackBerry's timetable are going to get sprayed with bile. You can count on it. (Again, where do we direct these customers to at BlackBerry/?)
40) So does this mean that current AIR apps will stop working? or just that they are not accepting new SKU's for apps running on AIR after 10.3.1? (We know the answer, but you never answered it for him).
41) Is there a published timeline for BB10.3.1 in existence? How much time to I have to port my app to a supported platform?
42) Why removing it? Just leave it as is, at least existing apps will still work.
43) First the 10K commitment failure, now this! BlackBerry should pay all Air devs for porting the app! Do you guys agree?
Regarding comments above from other people:
> You can totally change the IDE of an existing app. I have personally done so with my Pixelated app (http://appworld.blackberry.com/webstore/content/20
Of course you did, its a free app, and wouldn't cause the conflict. Try a paid app and you'll see what we mean.
04-16-2014 02:41 PM - edited 04-16-2014 02:42 PM
I would also like to see all the questions that KermEd has compiled above answered. I also would like to add another question:
46) Will there be an official statement from Blackberry to the userbase, explaining them why will several of their apps will stop working one random day in the future? Or do we really have to start explaining them that all which they can do with their apps they can do better on an Android phone?
47) Will there also be an statement why suddenly thousands of sites which use flash and worked fine will stop working?
Blackberry needs to stop jumping on the HTML5 bubble and understand that flash is an strenght it has which iOS and windows phone doesn't. Just google a bit and you'll find hundreds of posts about people asking how they can make flash work on their phones, The users love more features, not less.
Flash on the browser is an strenght over other smartphones. And AIR apps cappable of working outside of the android sandbox let the AIR devs build their own extensions for future features, and build better apps. Perfomance and battery life matters too.
Finally, please consider: we are developers, we do not deppend on Blackberry. If you are telling us that we should build apps for Android, we might as well explain our users that switching to an Android phone to use our apps is better.
04-16-2014 02:57 PM
Thank you for summarizing the thread and compiling that long list of questions. We are working through the list and plan on posting answers on the BlackBerry Developer Blog. We'll use the blog so that it is more visible and easier to find for developers (than a post in a long thread like this). I will post a link here once that post is live.
04-16-2014 03:02 PM - edited 04-16-2014 03:07 PM
I just noticed that my Screenshot extension has been promoted to become a core WebWorks SDK API. How sarcastic.
The Flash runtime will still be in the browser. I simply cannot believe that the cost of maintaining the AIR additions are so prohibitive that they have to be axed. Or is the Flash browser runtime the next on the list???
Re-packaging is not an option for blatantly obvious reasons. Rewriting in Cascades is not an option for such a small market share. HTML5 cannot do the things I'm doing in AIR, and has its own problems (e.g. 10.2.1 breaking WebGL on Q-series, rendering one of my apps non-functional).
For developers, a succesfull platform has long-term stability. At the moment, BlackBerry is neither succesfull nor stable. From a business perspective, even as a relatively active developer I have found it hard to justify spending time on BlackBerry since the BB10 launch. I told myself that things would get better. I fear this has tipped the balance, and more importantly: it has killed my faith in BlackBerry. Broken promises seem to be the norm these days.
Over the past months I have spent quite a bit of time working on a new product. That investment is now totally worthless.
As things stand I am certainly not interested in investing any extra time in this platform.