BlackBerry CEO John Chen has come out with an extraordinary proposal to solve his platform’s app shortage – force Apple make apps for it.
Android and iOS are way ahead of BlackBerry in many respects, but one of the biggest relates to their respective app libraries. BlackBerry has even taken the desperate measure of permitting Android apps to be crowbarred onto its handsets in recent times.
John Chen wants to go even further. The BlackBerry CEO believes that the ever-hot net neutrality debate should incorporate apps. In particular, Chen believes that it should be compulsory for all apps to be made available on all smartphone platforms.
“Neutrality must be mandated at the application and content layer if we truly want a free, open and non-discriminatory internet,” he said on a recent blog post.
If that sounds remotely noble to you, Chen’s true motivation can probably be discerned in the specific examples he uses to prove his point.
“Unlike BlackBerry, which allows iPhone users to download and use our BBM service, Apple does not allow BlackBerry or Android users to download Apple’s iMessage messaging service,” Chen notes.
It’s not just Apple that’s targeted either: “Netflix, which has forcefully advocated for carrier neutrality, has discriminated against BlackBerry customers by refusing to make its streaming movie service available to them,” Chen adds.
Yes, Chen’s bold petition (which also took the form of a letter to US congress) appears aimed at getting more top apps onto BlackBerry.
Still, you can’t blame a guy for trying, can you?