BlackBerry is making some changes to the Built for BlackBerry program. Additonally, if you develop and submit a new app for the Built for BlackBerry program by October 21st, 2013 and if you are one of the first 250 developers to get your app approved, you could receive one of the coveted red Limited Edition BlackBerry Z10 smartphones.

BlackBerry today re-launched its Built for BlackBerry program to provide developers with a more simple and clear path to achieving Built for BlackBerry status, a designation that tells consumers that a BlackBerry app delivers the signature BlackBerry 10 experience.

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The revitalised Built for BlackBerry program is part of an effort to ensure that BlackBerry World contains the applications that customers want with the best customer experience. The program will ensure that an increasing percentage of apps in the store provide seamless performance and an integrated experience with BlackBerry 10 features such as the Hub or BBM.

BlackBerry is also focused on being the strongest platform business partner for developers. The new Built for BlackBerry program works to increase discoverability, a key hurdle for app and business success. In fact, in the week when featured on the Carousel, measured against the time not featured, Built for BlackBerry apps have increased daily downloads by an average of 230%.

Built for BlackBerry apps will now have more regular placement on BlackBerry World carousels and microbanners, as well as a new top Built for BlackBerry list that customers can easily find and search. Built for BlackBerry apps will also have an exclusive results area in app searches.

The program also includes a refreshed criteria checklist that clarifies the requirements for developers and a new submission process that enables a faster path to be part of Built for BlackBerry:

What does this mean for BlackBerry 10 customers?

  • Built for BlackBerry is a simple way to find and explore apps that take advantage of the BlackBerry 10 platform.

What does this mean for developers?

  • Increased exposure and discoverability of their app
  • A noted designation that can be leveraged in app promotion
  • Opportunities to be featured in BlackBerry app promotions

What is the BlackBerry 10 signature app experience?

  • The BlackBerry 10 signature app experience requires vendors to follow the BlackBerry 10 guidelines to deliver a familiar experience to customers, i.e. swipe back to exit an app, swipe down for application menu with settings, swipe up for action menu, use of context menus, etc, without unnecessarily complicating BlackBerry app development.

How does a developer build for the signature BlackBerry 10 experience? 

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  • It is simple to implement the BlackBerry 10 experience into apps – both for native, HTML5 and AIR apps
  • Native – Cascades auto implements these controls for the developer
  • HTML5 – BlackBerry provides a bootstrap template for developer Phonegap or HTML5 app projects to use
  • AIR – The BlackBerry Experience framework allows developers to easily create a BlackBerry 10 UI

Find out more details on the revamped Built for BlackBerry program at http://developer.blackberry.com/builtforblackberry/