BlackBerry announced yesterday that it was bringing the super productivity suite known as BlackBerry Hub+ from BlackBerry 10 to, not just PRIV or their DTEK50 smartphone, but ALL Android smartphones running android 6.0 and above. BlackBerry is working on extending support to devices running Android 5.0 Lollipop as well and even iOS.
So I installed it on my Samsung Galaxy S7. See screen shot above. I then installed the other apps it offers.
As you can see it has unified all my social media apps apart from Google Plus. Setting up the BlackBerry Hub+ was really simple. I have noticed a small bug with text messages. When trying to open text messages from Google or Amazon, it triggers “create a new message”. Apart from that I haven’t seen anything significantly wrong with the apps. It even works really well with my Samsung Gear Fit 2, giving me options on the Gear Fit 2 with Gmail email to delete, reply all, snooze and show on phone.
So what’s the catch and why has BlackBerry made this move? Well it is clear to me that BlackBerry has become a services company instead of selling hardware. The BlackBerry Hub+ is a 30 day trial which gives you access to the Hub, BlackBerry Calendar and Password Keeper. After 30 days, you can continue using the apps for free by opting to view occasional ads, or subscribe to the entire suite of apps for just 99 cents a month, which will include additional powerful time-saving features: Contacts, Tasks, Device Search, Notes and Launcher.
In essence your android phone for $12 a year becomes a BlackBerry device with all its services. So far the experience is good but I do need more time to test it, but based on my initial experience I would be tempted to pay 99 cents a month to gain access to the complete set of apps and see whether or not it improves my user experience.