Today wrapped up WES 2008, the yearly BlackBerry conference. A half-day's worth of sessions, and I sat in on some good ones, like yesterday the best one was run by RIM's Mike Kirkup and focused on some best practices in BlackBerry application development.
Overall a really great show, and BlackBerry is a great platform and represents significant opportunity moving forward, not just for RIM, but for solution providers and application developers. There seemed to be extra emphasis on ISVs this week - an expanded Solutions Showcase, many sessions geared towards commercial software application development, the addition of Documents To Go to the BlackBerry platform, and the announcement of the new BlackBerry venture capital fund.
I've been a mobile application developer since 1996 and along with my company Bachmann Sofware we've watched many mobile platforms rise, some failing immediately, some thriving for a while then failing, and some continuing to gain strength and momentum over the years. BlackBerry at present falls into this latter category. There is an aura of excitement about RIM, its BlackBerry devices, the platform, and the overall ecosystem which I have not seen since the early heady days of Palm in the late 90's. We as application developers dream about opportunities like the one BlackBerry presents, so I return from WES today excited about continuing to work with this growing platform.
I also leave the show with many ideas for new blog topics....watch this space for more thoughts on the Mobile Movement!