BlackBerry is keeping the developer love coming. It's just outed its third “Dev Alpha” test handset – a QWERTY one this time – and has issued an updated BlackBerry Q10 simulator to support writing apps for the different form factor.
Plus, to say thanks for the effort that saw 70,000 apps already in place for the BlackBerry 10 launch last week, BlackBerry is giving away a limited run of 12,000 red BlackBerry Z10s to the developers who helped it get there.
The announcements were made at the company's BlackBerry Jam Europe get-together over in Amsterdam, with the BB10 focus now shifting to the QWERTY-based BlackBerry Q10 now that the touchscreen Z10 is now walking among us.
While the Z10 is dominated by the traditional candybar-shaped screen, the Q10's display is square to accommodate the physical keyboard below, and features a 720 x 720-pixel resolution.
Hence the BlackBerry Dev Alpha C and updated SDK – although for the time being the Dev Alpha C is only available in the hands-on lab at BlackBerry Jam Europe, while the SDK update brings a new BlackBerry Q10 simulator, but doesn't provide an OS update for existing Dev Alpha handsets.
However, developers can now apply for a Dev Alpha C test device of their own, though as with the previous Dev Alpha handsets, you have to jump through a few hoops to actually get one, with only 1,500 units being produced in total. The BlackBerry Developer Blog has more details.
The red BlackBerry Z10, meanwhile, is the mystery prize at the end of the “Limited Edition Process” that enticed developers with the chance to “trade up” their BB10 Dev Alpha handset for something special come launch day.
It's identical to the standard Z10 aside from the colour and the finish (gloss instead of matte). Oh, and it has “BlackBerry 10 developer” engraved on the inside. In case you forget.
It's a nice gesture, though, and all the more so because the general Mr J Public will have no way of getting one himself.
As a developer it's still not too late to get in on the action, as BlackBerry has extended the deadline for submissions to February 28. The BlackBerry Q10 itself is expected to go on sale in April.