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BlackBerry puts stock into Android with 2012 phones

by Jac Thurmond

s BlackBerry adding Android support to its next wave of phones? It looks like after years of weak growth, the answer is finally yes.

According to Bloomberg, the 2012 batch of phones will run QNX software, which other sources are reporting the line will launch with a project code named Colt.

This will be the first Research in Motion has started moving its phone OS from the standard BlackBerry system to QNX since it purchased the open-source operating system last year. The only QNX device currently on offer is the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, which has been showing anemic growth compared to its mighty iPad cousin.

BlackBerry’s been facing some stiff competition in recent years under the market hold of the iPhone and Android devices. The BlackBerry OS tends to be cited as useful for email and text communications, but not as great with the bells and whistles that other more popular systems offer. It hits businesses as well as markets attracted by its low price point, but it’s far from a leader with consumers elsewhere.

PlayBook has also seen its growth hampered by the lack of Android support it offers; though the company timetable said it should have been able to play nicely with Google’s OS by now, the PlayBook isn’t due to become Android compatible until later this year.

According to sources, BlackBerry is hoping that the new OS will promote a strong 10 year period of growth. Whether it’ll catch on still remains to be seen.

Would becoming Android compatible encourage you to give BlackBerry a try? Or are you inseparable from your HTC/Galaxy/whatever? Please share your thoughts here.

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