BlackBerry CEO: Discrimination is Why Companies Don’t Make BlackBerry Apps

BlackBerry CEO John Chen sure is an entertaining character. From calling iPhone users ‘wall huggers’ to comparing the Apple-IBM deal to when “two elephants start dancing”, the man knows how to make headlines.

In a company blog post, based on his letter sent to U.S. legislators regarding net neutrality, Chen argues apps should also be included as part of the latter. He argues “discriminatory practices” are the reasons why there aren’t top apps for BlackBerry, due to the existing two-tier mobile OS race between iPhone and Android.

Chen calls out Apple for not opening iMessage to BlackBerry and Android users, despite BBM bringing the service to iOS users. He blasts Netflix for not even caring about BlackBerry users since a streaming app is still not available:

Unfortunately, not all content and applications providers have embraced openness and neutrality. 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.


This dynamic has created a two-tiered wireless broadband ecosystem, in which iPhone and Android users are able to access far more content and applications than customers using devices running other operating systems. These are precisely the sort of discriminatory practices that neutrality advocates have criticized at the carrier level.

Chen concludes “neutrality must be mandated at the application and content layer if we truly want a free, open and non-discriminatory internet.”

Forcing companies to develop apps for BlackBerry because if they don’t, it’s discriminatory? Does Chen really believe lawmakers should control the free market and how companies should allocate their precious resources?

How about nobody makes BlackBerry apps because their phones are garbage and have failed to gain traction? Money talks and clearly consumers aren’t buying BlackBerrys in droves. Developers follow the money—and that means iOS and Android right now.


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