BlackBerry snaps up California app store developer

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

TORONTO - With even its updated App World platform offering just 9,500 apps as compared to Apple’s 225,000 and Android store’s 65,000, BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) has acquired California-based Cellmania which delivers back-end infrastructure for application stores.

Based at Mountain View, Cellmania drives mobile ecosystems for the world’s largest mobile operators, infrastructure providers and content owners. It has the world’s largest repository of mobile content comprising over 200,000 items available in 55 languages on handsets in more than 100 countries.

Cellmania, which delivers content in the form of ringtones, java content, browseable content and video files, has Airtel, AT&T, Telstra and Virgin Mobile as its major customers.

It offers its mFinder 3G-ready platform to operators to accept applications from developers and sell them to users. Application developers can have their content included in mFinder to be distributed to the mobile operators worldwide.

The company shares revenue with application developers as well as handles digital rights and the billing for them.

Though RIM, which is based at Waterloo near Toronto, made no statement to confirm the takeover, Cellmania said on its website that it “is excited to announce that our company is now part of Research In Motion (RIM).

“Our team has joined RIM’s global organisation and will continue to bring our expertise in Application Storefront development to the BlackBerry platform.”

Facing onslaught from Apple’s iPhone 4 and Google Android devices, the BlackBerry maker opened its newly updated applications store App World 2.0 to all its users last week.

The new BlackBerry apps store allows users to buy apps with a credit card, while previously they had to pay only through PayPal. Further, developers can sell their apps for as low as 99 cents US as against the previous minimum price of $2.99.

But amid this acquisition, RIM stock continued to slip on the Toronto Stock Exchange Tuesday.

It sank below $50 to close at $49.94.

Filed under: Economy

will not be displayed