RIM Releases BlackBerry 10 Developer Toolkit

Research In Motion (RIM) has released the BlackBerry 10 initial developer toolkit for native and HTML5 software development at the BlackBerry World conference in Orlando, Florida.

The toolkit includes the BlackBerry 10 Native SDK with Cascades, which allows developers to create graphically rich, high performance native applications in C/C++ or Qt. The Native SDK for BlackBerry 10 has a set of APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) that give developers access to core device features and a range of BlackBerry application services, such as Push and Payment services. Cascades is a native app development toolset that RIM says allows developers to easily build visually stunning applications without having to write graphics code.

The toolkit also includes support for HTML5 app developers with the BlackBerry 10 WebWorks SDK, allowing them to create native-like applications using common web programming technologies.

The BlackBerry 10 WebWorks SDK allows developers to use HTML5 and CSS for building apps and provides JavaScript bindings to native device APIs along with RIM’s open source UI toolkit, bbUI.js, to create applications with native-like capabilities. In this initial release of the BlackBerry 10 WebWorks SDK, developers have access to a core subset of the full WebWorks APIs, including Identity, Application and App events, System and system events.

Applications created with any of the BlackBerry 10 tools will run on BlackBerry 10 smartphones as well as BlackBerry PlayBook Tablets when the new platform becomes available for the PlayBook. All of the SDKs will be updated to give developers access to more of BlackBerry 10’s capabilities over the coming months.

RIM is also providing BlackBerry 10 Jam attendees with a BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha device. RIM says this represents a commitment to provide the developer community with the tools they need to build successful applications for BlackBerry 10 devices, so that they are ready when the first BlackBerry 10 devices are expected to launch in the latter part of 2012.

“BlackBerry 10 builds upon the core values and exceptional user experiences that have attracted more than 77 million BlackBerry customers around the world today,” says Alec Saunders, vice president, developer relations and ecosystems development. “Developers building for BlackBerry 10 will be able to easily create the kind of cutting-edge apps that deliver truly engaging experiences and ‘wow’ customers, whether through integration with native features and other apps like BBM, or by leveraging the new signature design elements of this new and powerful mobile computing platform.”

There are more details about the NDK for BlackBerry 10 here, and about BlackBerry 10 for Cascades here. The NDK for BlackBerry 10, including Cascades, is available for download here.