Both Apple and Google have over half a million apps in their app stores right now, so as you can imagine, it can be very difficult to reach the top rankings in those stores, when you have so many other apps to compete with – not just from your own category but also apps that are completely unrelated as well, because there’s only so much space at the top.
RIM made an Android app player for their Playbook tablet a while ago, as an effort to encourage Android developers to port their apps to the Playbook, and get more total applications this way, since the company figured out that developers won’t exactly step over themselves to make native apps for the Playbook.
One developer, the maker of the Android game Cubifice, has taken advantage of this opportunity and ported his game to the Playbook. To his surprise, the game reached 25 times more downloads on the Blackberry App World store than on the Play Store, where it has between 50-100 downloads right now. Here’s what he had to say about this whole thing:
“The BlackBerry user community is very engaged, and there is far greater visibility of your application on the BlackBerry App World storefront than on other platforms,” Larocque told RIM in an interview. ”BlackBerry App World has a clear layout and does not suffer from the over-saturation that you find somewhere like Google Play, where your app quickly feels lost in a huge sea of similar applications.”
“With this application, not only do we have 25 times more downloads on BlackBerry App World than on Google Play, but we’ve also been able to maintain that high number and visibility. This visibility translates into a far better return on investment once the app becomes monetized because we will have to spend far less on marketing the application to users.”
Even he admits that there is greater visibility on the App World right now – it’s not because of some magic RIM is doing to make its apps a lot more appealing, but simply because of complete lack of competition in the Blackberry App World store. When apps are counted in the thousands, and games maybe in the dozens, it should be relatively easy to get to a top spot, especially if your game or app is at least decent.
I think this is all there is to it, and it’s nothing like the App World store being more efficient or something. But if this is just one more thing to help RIM get back on track, and provide Android and iOS with more competition, then I’m glad stuff like this is happening. If more Android developers get lured like this, maybe it could finally convince RIM to adopt Android as well.