It appears that RIM is still struggling to sell its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, and having already slashed prices in a number of markets, the Canadian company is now giving it away for free in an attempt to lure Android developers over to the BlackBerry platform.
Alec Saunders, RIM’s vice president of developer relations, announced on Twitter that Android developers who port their applications over to the PlayBook will get a free 16GB PlayBook tablet. Those who would like to get their hands on the slate must submit their apps to BlackBerry AppWorld by February 13, then email email@example.com with the name of their app to make their claim. A post on the BlackBerry Developer’s Blog explains:
Further details about the promotion will be posted on our developer site as soon as possible, but the plan is to provide one free 16GB BlackBerry PlayBook to every registered BlackBerry App World vendor who converts their Android app for use on the BlackBerry PlayBook and submits it to BlackBerry App World between February 2, 2012 and February 13, 2012.
The deadline doesn’t give developers much time, and RIM also states that there “will of course be some terms and conditions that are principally designed to prevent abuse of the promotion.” However, these are yet to be disclosed, and TechRadar is suspicious that the company may use them as a way out of the giveaway:
… there will be some as-yet-unspecified terms and conditions, but by the time those have been posted, it’s likely that developers won’t have a chance to make sure they meet them.
Seems like an opportunity to move the goal posts to us.
But if you’re an Android developer who had plans to port your apps anyway, there’s no harm in trying for the free tablet. And if you turn out to be one of the lucky ones, be sure to let us know.
Will you be porting your Android apps to BlackBerry AppWorld for a free PlayBook?