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Blackberry Cellphones Facebook Handhelds Social Networks

Facebook and Whatsapp Discontinue Support For Blackberry (canadajournal.net) 138

Meshach writes with a link to news that as of yesterday, Facebook and WhatsApp have both discontinued support for Blackberry smartphones including BlackBerry 10 and BBOS platforms. Apparently Blackberry fought to have the support continue but in the end they were not successful. BlackBerry has had to replaced their official Facebook App with a native app that uses a simple web interface. If you're still using a Blackberry, it would be interesting to know why. (You like the interface? Business requirement? Just being contrarian?)
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Facebook and Whatsapp Discontinue Support For Blackberry

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  • by Barsteward ( 969998 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @11:31AM (#51737091)
    so a non-story for some of us
    • by ganjadude ( 952775 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @11:35AM (#51737119) Homepage
      not everyone uses a blackberry either... so its probably a non story for 99% of us

      still interesting
      • by houstonbofh ( 602064 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @11:42AM (#51737165)
        Some of us don't use "apps" when a web page works just fine. And once you read the TOS, you will too! God, they are privacy sucking nightmares!
      • by Z00L00K ( 682162 )

        Next step is when do Windows Phone (or what it's called this year) get the same fate?

        • Is Facebook developing those apps or did Microsoft helpfully make the apps for Facebook?

          Because for quite some time, companies were getting surprised when Microsoft would release an 'app' that pretty much just wrapped a web site, but everything would point to the company creating the app, so they would get tech support calls for their app on Microsoft Windows Phone...which they didn't have and didn't know existed until phoned for tech support...

      • not everyone uses a blackberry either... so its probably a non story for 99% of us

          still interesting

        Actually, rather than make a press release they should probably just message their user on Blackberry and let him know they're going to discontinue it.

    • And therefore not worth you reading OR commenting on, yes?

      I think the point of "interest" here is that Blackberry is losing another significant point of support from an application that a great number of people DO use, whether or not you or I do.

      I think continuing to belabor the fact that Blackberry is effectively a dead platform, and that widespread abandonment by app developers is only going to accelerate, may be a bit redundant at this point.

      I suppose if I really thought a story shouldn't run, I'd deal

  • "BlackBerry has had to replaced their official Facebook App..." Methinks the new editors doth edit too little. "All your base are belong to us?"
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I USE IT 4 HW KB. I TIPE FASTR AND MOSR ACURATY

    Love,
    50 and 60 year olds everywhere

  • Not surprising (Score:4, Insightful)

    by johanw ( 1001493 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @11:34AM (#51737115)

    Blackberry is dropping support for BBOS itself. The current BBOS 10 seems to be in maintenance mode and their new device will run Android. And the remarks of their CEO that companies should add a backdoor for "lawfull interception" scared away all customers who valued privacy and destroyed the "it is secure" argument when considering Blackberry.

    • And the remarks of their CEO that companies should add a backdoor for "lawfull interception" scared away all customers who valued privacy and destroyed the "it is secure" argument when considering Blackberry.

      This did nothing of the sort. No one valuing privacy has used a Blackberry since 2013 when the company decided to just hand over the keys to read anything happening on Indian Blackberry phones to the government.

      The CEO's recent statements only reiterated something that everyone already knew, which was if an American company will happily fold to the Indian government you can be damn certain they are already well and truly in bed with their own. .

      • The CEO's recent statements only reiterated something that everyone already knew, which was if an American company will happily fold to the Indian government you can be damn certain they are already well and truly in bed with their own. .

        BlackBerry Limited (formerly RIM) is a Canadian company. Apparently, they will fold to nearly any government. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... [wikipedia.org]

      • by Anonymous Coward

        They didn't hand over the keys, they setup lawful intercept system served with warrants in India in accordance with Indian laws.

  • BlackBerry user (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The BlackBerry interface makes more sense to me, the OS allows for true multi-tasking, The Hub aggregates all communication streams (email, SMS, MSS, social app notification, etc.) into one place, and yes...the physical keyboard.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    never heard of whatapp, though - must be a canadian clone

  • by JustAnotherOldGuy ( 4145623 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @11:47AM (#51737187)

    "Blackberry has had to replaced their official Facebook App with a native app that uses a simple web interface."

    Oh no, those poor peasants, forced to use a filthy web interface! Oh the shame, oh the degradation, how will they ever be able to hold their heads up in public again??

    Also, pay attention to your editing, lads. Allowing writing like "has had to replaced" is simply shameful. Tut-tut.

    • Re:Oh noes!!!!! (Score:4, Insightful)

      by c ( 8461 ) <beauregardcp@gmail.com> on Sunday March 20, 2016 @01:14PM (#51737651)

      "Blackberry has had to replaced their official Facebook App with a native app that uses a simple web interface."

      Oh no, those poor peasants, forced to use a filthy web interface! Oh the shame, oh the degradation, how will they ever be able to hold their heads up in public again??

      I'm not seeing the problem, here, either. Facebook on a mobile browser is, IMHO, a *better* experience than the Facebook App. No battery drain while you're not using it, no notification nonsense, no having Facebook code creeping through your private data.

      • I'm not seeing the problem, here, either. Facebook on a mobile browser is, IMHO, a *better* experience than the Facebook App. No battery drain while you're not using it, no notification nonsense, no having Facebook code creeping through your private data.

        Exactly.

        My personal view is that apps in general are nothing more than a way to get you to install code so they can paw through your personal data and information for the purposes of monetization.

      • it's useful to have the app to get messages, notifications etc and also create posts from the hub
        • by c ( 8461 )

          it's useful to have the app to get messages, notifications etc and also create posts from the hub

          I don't have the hub on my Android device, but I actually consider the lack of messages, notifications and any other kind of automatic update to be a feature. There's nothing so important happening on Facebook that it can't wait until I next visit the web site.

    • Oh no, those poor peasants, forced to use a filthy web interface! Oh the shame, oh the degradation, how will they ever be able to hold their heads up in public again??

      You jest but have you actually *used* Facebook's web interface? Back 5 years ago I would have described it as a bucket of shit, but since then it got worse and I don't have a thesaurus on hand.

      • You jest but have you actually *used* Facebook's web interface? Back 5 years ago I would have described it as a bucket of shit, but since then it got worse and I don't have a thesaurus on hand.

        I don't use Facebook, so I've been spared both their craptastic web interface and their privacy-sucking app. And yet somehow my life doesn't seem to have suffered.

        • by Desler ( 1608317 )

          Woaaaah! We've got a ceritified Internet badass here.

        • And yet somehow my life doesn't seem to have suffered

          How would you know? Show me your control clone. /Side note I actually said that to someone and they showed me their phone background which was a picture of them and their twin sibling. Man was I put in my place that day :-).

          • How would you know? Show me your control clone.

            I just use the people around me. :)

            Most of them have lives that don't resemble their Facebook "facade", and they're kind of unhappy about it. They don't realize that everyone on Facebook is showing their highlight reel while actually living the bits that end up on the cutting room floor.

            • That's just the kind of people they are. My Facebook feed is full of passive aggressive people thanking their newborns for vomiting on them :-)

              But in all seriousness, that's just it. A social network is no different from people talking around a water cooler. There will always be those who put up a facade while others will share various aspects of their life, both good and the shitty. There's nothing inherent about Facebook that changes this, except for bringing out people who depend on a platform for social

  • The Blackberry Bold remains the pinnacle of smartphone design. Too bad people today care more about a big shiny screen and shitty apps than usability.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    As mentioned by someone else, the article title is a little misleading. Blackberry is transitioning their phones over to Android (I'm typing this comment on my BlackBerry PRIV running Android right now). So while FB updates are canceled for their old devices, their current and new devices will have the Android app, no problem.

    • I have a Priv myself, and while I like it a lot, it does show just how mature and well-integrated BB10 is. Android has a way to go.
  • Dear eds (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    No chance you could have linked to the original blog post, from which TFA scrapes its quotes?

    blogs.blackberry.com/2016/03/great-apps-on-blackberry-a-strong-commitment-to-the-blackberry-developer-community/

    canadajournal.net looks rather sketchy and full of clickbait

  • by gweihir ( 88907 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @12:22PM (#51737357)

    Reasons? I need email, calender, hot-spot, occasional maps and excellent telephony. That is it. All there. Add an extremely snappy UI (as it is QNX), removable battery, good keyboard and overall excellent hardware. And I recently got a spare new one for around $100 off Ebay. As long as BB supplies security-patches, I am not moving.

    Facebook? Whatsapp? If I want time-sinks, I play real games on a real computer.

    • Does not the OS support the use android programs? As a user, have you tried this feature?
      • by gweihir ( 88907 )

        I have no idea. I have no need for that and I have some need for my phone to be secure so I am not putting any Apps on it, unless I have a clear need for them.

    • Facebook? Whatsapp? If I want time-sinks, I play real games on a real computer.

      This is why I carry a desktop PC with me everywhere. The ability to whip it out in the subway and have a quick Call of Duty fragfest just makes my trip so much more pleasant.

    • Whatsapp is SMS-alike for countries with overpriced SMS or communicating across a border. Although it should be a good idea to use something else (like Telegram), because Whatsapp belongs to Facebook so it would be harvesting your phone for them even if you never use Facebook.

      Email on a phone? Why would anyone want that? just kidding.

  • by suy ( 1908306 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @12:24PM (#51737373) Homepage

    I got a BB Z10 for free for being a Qt developer and attend a developer event. It was my first BlackBerry, and I am so sorry that I will have to let it go, since I am so not buying a BB device if it's just running Android (If I'll end up buying an Android device, I'll have plenty of choices). Yes, the BB OS 10 interface is a lot better for me than Android. I loved the Nokia N9, and this one was even a tiny step forward, and I'm too used to it after 5 years of happiness. I also used a Jolla for some time, and is the kind of UI where I feel at home.

    The way you jump back and forth between applications on Android is really really bad for my taste. I have an Android tablet, and it annoys the hell of me that it shows lots of poor screenshots of applications that I have not opened (e.g. when I just restarted after an upgrade it shows tons of them no really running). Harmattan (Nokia N9), Sailfish OS (Jolla) or BlackBerry OS 10 give a much more useful indication of what the application is/was doing, or additional controls. Besides, you see several of them at a glance, not in a stack view that only shows a tiny slice of the second one and almost nothing of the next ones.

    The top shade got one step back in the last major Android release. In an Android tablet, the user had access to different quick controls swiping on the left or the right of the screen: now I have to swipe twice to have quick access to the Bluetooth control, so moving my headset from the phone to the tablet (or vice versa) is a lot faster and convenient in BB OS 10 with respect to Android (they used to be tied in the previous version).

    I'm used to not being the typical user (I'm a bit more power user, fine), but seriously, changing from one application to the other (browser to podcast to instant messaging for example) or having quick access to Bluetooth settings is something I would expect done right in 100% of the mobile OSs for this time and age.

  • BlackBerry User here (Score:5, Interesting)

    by williamyf ( 227051 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @12:26PM (#51737389)

    I use a BlackBerry Q10. I NEED the physical Keyboard. I tried for a year with a glass keboard on a Nokia N9 with Meego. I tried everything. Portrait keyboard, Landscape keyboard. Swipe Keyboard (before it was available on Android), custom Layout keyboard, bigger keys keboard, you name it (the good thing about Meego is that it was infinitely customizable). No dice. In the end, after one year of honestly trying to type on glass, it was evident that in my case the physical keyboard wins.

    My first Q10 had keyboard problems (multipress) and had to be replaced.

    I would be happier with an iPhone with a physical keyboard (and no, cases do not work) as I am a Mac user, but that is just wishfull thinking.

    For the OS, BB10 is serviceable, but even RIM/Blackberry do not believe iin it, for if they did, you could buy the Priv in Android option and BB10 option...

    But, as for Facebook and WhatsApp discontinuing support, I do not care. Since BB10 can run Android APK binaries, I am 95% sure that an AOSP version of the apps will appear in the BlackBerry World or Amazon App Store, and, failing that, I can sideload the APKs anyhow, so, no big dealio...

    My two cents, YMMV

  • If you're still using Facebook, it would be interesting to know why. (You like the interface? Business requirement? Just being contrarian?)

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I use a Z10 because it was provided by my company. And I have to say, it is a good device with a good interface. Except that there are no apps and maybe battery life. It has the Balance feature which separates business data from private data, but still has some integration, like you can see both dates in the calendar app. In other departments in the company they have Windows phones and are not allowed to do anything private with those devices. And I like the Hub, which integrates all sorts of mails, calls,

  • I am no fanboi of anything really, but I bought blackberry passport on a whim when it came out and never looked back. I'm an old fart and their client is the only one that sensibly connects to our IMAP server and just kinda works, physical keyboard is unmatchable. I actually write production emails from my phone now. Really sad to see whatsapp going away, as I use it to speak to my brother.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Same here.

      I only have a smartphone because I need one, if all my mail and comm was private, I wouldn't bother and enjoy my quiet time. Winning the lottery for me would mean one beast of a laptop and a 10€ throwaway phone. One email account. No social networks at all - quit Facebook a few years ago and never looked back, but that was only the one annoying me the most -, no instant messaging, away with all of it.

      As it stands, I have a lot of communication I don't care for, but need. I'm not a corporate f

    • by jpkunst ( 612360 )
      Why not ask him to install BBM?
  • Is it really so hard to get the name of one of the most popular chat program for mobile phones correct?

  • I use a Q10 an it is a great phone. I use it mainly because o the physical keyboard, which I find much more productive than a virtual one. Another great feature is the Blackberry Hub which I find much better than any other notification center (either Android or I OS). This said, it it clear that this OS does not have a future. Blackberry should have opted to build a customized Android (without Google Services) and that would have been a great success. I am not sure they will still be abl to make it, but I h
  • by nerdyalien ( 1182659 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @01:41PM (#51737775)

    First and foremost, this is old news!
    https://tech.slashdot.org/stor... [slashdot.org]

    Former developer and operations (DevOps) guy here, worked for many financial and media outlets; now working as a consultant for remote clients in Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore. By nature of my work, I handle thousands of e-mails, hundreds of voice calls, text messages, WhatsApp, Skype etc on the go.

    As for why I still use a BlackBerry:
    1. Solid communication device - There is nothing like a BB when it comes to holy trinity (E-mail, voice, text). BlackBerry Hub is an unique app that aggregates all communication details into one place, haven't seen anything like it in other devices.
    2. Keyboard - Do I need say more ?
    3. Sturdy design - I drop it everyday, still it is working without a hitch
    4. Long battery life - Easily a day, if I push, about day-and-half on a single charge
    5. Stable OS - It has QNX with proper multi tasking
    6. Basic useful/stable apps

    I always get slagged off by colleagues, friends and pretty much everybody else for carrying a BB. Fact of the matter is, I am an old geezer with sausage fingers, suffering from early stages of rheumatoid arthritis. As a result, I can't type on touch screens like others. I am not big into social media stuff or any young & hip trends that require all these fancy apps. I am comfortable with the basic & stable apps comes with the OS.

    There is nothing like writing a typo free e-mail/text (especially to a client), and ensure intended message is communicated correctly. In that respect, BB is a godsend !

  • by allo ( 1728082 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @01:49PM (#51737827)

    Blackberry Users would now still have one of the two apps.

  • I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if tens of voices suddenly cried out in terror, and were suddenly silenced. I fear something inconsequential has happened.
  • As far as I'm concerned, Blackberry was already dead when there were only two mobile platforms, it and Palm OS. It was mediocre tech back in 2000, and never improved much.
  • I like the Hub, BBM and the fact that it is a Canadian company.

  • If you're still using a Blackberry, it would be interesting to know why.

    Physical keyboard.

    • by CMECC ( 610349 )
      I'll second your comment on the physical keyboard for faster typing, plus my BlackBerry Q10 get 2.5 times better battery life on long phone calls than my work iPhone 5s. My previous BlackBerry lasted 5 years, & I only replaced the battery (for $5) and the trackball (for $9). That long-life product convinced me to buy another BlackBerry.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    ...and the various social-media apps are the first things I disable/reset-to-factory to free up space on any device I get.

    As for why a BlackBerry? Same as everyone else: Keyboard, keyboard, keyboard.

    I gave touch-screen keyboard a try for over a year, forced myself to stick with using an iPhone 4s recently and an iPad, tried the whole Apple Ecosystem thing even, gave it a solid try... and I found my ancient Nokia X2-01 I kept as a spare (the Symbian 40 candybar phone) to be more functional than my iPhone for

  • I use my cell phone for texting - the Q5 has a great keyboard.
    I bought a new one last fall for about 1/3 its original cost.

  • I use Telegram (Score:5, Informative)

    by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @05:14PM (#51739059) Journal

    Telegram is an open-source version of Whatsapp - it imitates it very well, and it works like a charm. Telegram for Blackberry is still maintained. And of course, being open-source, in theory one can do the maintenance him/herself if they find a bug they want squashed.

  • Could it be, because I like it?

    I love the keyboard. I'm more accurate with it. I'm slightly slower than typing on glass (this wasn't the case 3 years ago, but I have gotten a lot better with glass). However, punctuation, acronyms (important for my job), spelling non standard things - stuff that would just destroy autocorrect - these things work better with a physical keyboard.

    The hub (BB10) and email support is simply great. It all works. It's fast. It's easily accessible from any screen or app. I als
  • Android user since 2008. I had the opportunity a few weeks ago to spend some quality time with a BlackBerry Classic and completely fell in love with the interface, both touch based and the innumerable keyboard shortcuts. I have not not regretted my decision to jump ship. While on the one hand, I verified anything I might need is already available on the BB platform between either through the official BB store or the Android Amazon store, as a self-respecting nerd I already knew I was going to push the Black
  • by mars-nl ( 2777323 ) on Sunday March 20, 2016 @08:06PM (#51739973)

    Too bad all the comments above are about whether the BB is any good or not. They are not about the real issue: that it is shouldn't be news that some sort of communication stops working because of unsupported platform. If we all would be using open protocols for communication (like email, sms, irc, xmpp) instead of some proprietary centralized sillicon valley super .com's version of it, this wouldn't have been news. We would switch to another client or make one and not rely on whatever the .com's shareholders think is profitable. Facebook does not do what is best for internet users or does not do what is the best technical solution. They do whatever gives them the most amount of control for the least amount of money.

    • Funny you mention XMPP. Facebook actually supported that until they didn't: https://developers.facebook.co... [facebook.com] Can't drive the cattle with these open protocols, you see. Of course, this also serves as evidence that open protocols are not some silver bullet. When a monolith like Facebook is in control, they can quite easily swap in their own proprietary protocols at any time, just as they've done.
  • It's actually a win. Browsers can do pretty much all you really want out of this type of app. Xabber for xmpp + other chats anyways.
  • In short, BB works for me. Maps with driving navigation? Yes. (Hello my power-hungry Android friends, can your phone navigate with GPS and charge up off a USB socket? Z10 does that.) Shutdown the phone for weeks without charging then switch it on with live battery? Yes. (That requires inserting a post-it between battery contacts. Impossible with Apple phones.) Phone? Yes. SSH client? Yes. Wifi hotspot? Yes. Flashlight? Yes. (No app required.) Facebook, dunno, I don't use that stuff. Most things are inconven
  • Now I'm glad I stuck with Symbian.

  • 2 reasons why I still use the z10 (and just bought a z30 for $200):

    - it runs native apps, meaning it has a normal development environment, you write your C/C++ program with a main() entry point and go into a loop that runs your app. No objc or java bullshit. The menu is not running on a virtual machine, which means it doesn't drop frames while scrolling the icons, and it doesn't shit all over your ram.

    - The blackberry hub is amazing. It's not just a "notification center", all your emails and texts and chats

    • I got my Z10 on launch and still rocking it precisely because the OS is easier to use than Android/Apple. I love the true multi-tasking and most importantly, as you have mentioned, the integrated hub. Having every message types in one location is amazing and you can create messages for all of these apps from that one location rather than needing to go into the separate apps. It's a shame that Fb isn't supported anymore but with alternatives like face10, it's still OK... however the kicker for me is the loss
  • Q10 user here (got it as a gift, considering buying a BB Passport). I make sure I have the latest updates to the OS. Same arguments as have been advanced already by other BB users in this thread: the OS does true multitasking, physical keyboard (with auto-backlighting), the BB Hub (so much so that any other mobile OS **not** having something the like keeps me away from them), games not desired, Canadian company - plus several more.

    1) I've noticed surprise with people on the other side of the world when usi

  • Well, that dictates my next phone purchase: I'm getting a Blackberry!

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