Gmail app on Blackberry getting killed off by Google

Hear that sound? It’s another death knell for Research in Motion’s (RIM) Blackberry device. The once dominant smartphone maker has been running into issue after issue recently, and the hits continue to come today as Google plans to kill the Gmail app on Blackberry phones.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that on November 22nd, Blackberry users will no longer be able to download the popular email app to their smartphone. Instead of having an integrated app, Google will focus on "building a great Gmail experience in the mobile browser.” The obvious disadvantage of this method is that Blackberry users will not receive notifications when new email messages have been received, nor will they be able to easily manage multiple Gmail accounts.

RIM has had a rocky time the past few years. The company controlled nearly 50% of the smartphone market just five years ago, but today controls only 11.6% as they lag far behind Apple and Google.

If you already have the Gmail app on your phone, the functionality will continue to work but new features will no longer be added. Having said that, why is Google pulling the app instead of leaving it available in an unsupported state?

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Death Knell?? not likely the Google apps ran like sh*t on BlackBerrys and often had memory leaks or caused email and calendar duplication

The author of this article is obviously just trying to ride the wave of journalists crapping on BB in an effort to get noticed.

As others have stated, the native BB messages app does a fine job of handling gmail. This is a non-issue that is being portrayed as some sort of death blow for no other reason than page hits.

I've sold Google Apps to clients on the basis that it syncs well with Blackberry. Blackberry Email connects using IMAP so does not preserve read/unread status.

Most (if not all) clients have moved onto iPhone/Android now anyway, but it still gives you that 'hook' to get them onboard from Blackberry because they sure don't want to let their Blackberries go.

I setup Google Apps for a company that came from an Exchange 2000/BES setup. Initially I installed the GMail app but within a few days reverted back to using the inbuilt email application. I guess most other users are doing the same thing. After this setup I can safely say I will never invest my money into a BB phone, their mail application is poor when comparing it to iOS or Android.

I've had my BlackBerry for almost a year and I have never used the Gmail app. The Messages app does the job for me. It probably does the job for a vast majority of BB users.

Anaron said,
I've had my BlackBerry for almost a year and I have never used the Gmail app. The Messages app does the job for me. It probably does the job for a vast majority of BB users.

So by using the standard Messages app, does all of your Gmail mail get plopped together with your work email? Or is it separated by account? I glanced at it on my phone last night and a) couldn't find a way to link up my Gmail accounts (didn't try that hard either though) and b) don't want my work and personal email mixing if that's how it works.

Fezmid said,

So by using the standard Messages app, does all of your Gmail mail get plopped together with your work email? Or is it separated by account? I glanced at it on my phone last night and a) couldn't find a way to link up my Gmail accounts (didn't try that hard either though) and b) don't want my work and personal email mixing if that's how it works.
I believe it's separated by account. I could be wrong though. I haven't used two Gmail accounts simultaneously; however, I have used one Gmail account and one Hotmail account. The two accounts had their own inbox and none of the emails mixed up. I assume the same would be done with two Gmail accounts.

While updates are nice, I think the focus on apps, apps, apps to be moderately ridiculous with so many phones having modern browsers. Going to web means they can focus on one mobile webapp for everyone without an official app (smartphones, feature phones with netbrowsers, the myriad of different tablets, etc), keeping everyone up to date, with less work/trouble on their end while everyone else enjoys a more consistent experience (in theory).

sigh as a blackberry owner im dissapointed... and i was expecting a google+ app i guess that it wont happen...

Really? I use the Messages application for both of my GMail accounts. Heck, I didn't even know there was a GMail app.

briangw said,
Really? I use the Messages application for both of my GMail accounts. Heck, I didn't even know there was a GMail app.

This would explain things better, it seems many people didn't know or use the gmail app and just used BBs integrated client to get the job done. Makes more sense that way, thus Google is killing off something that probably didn't get going much anyways.

You could just do what almost every BB user does anyway, use Gmail through the dedicated Messages application built right in to the BlackBerry.

BlackBerry will do fine with Google's dedicated gmail app. Gmail integrates fine with the BlackBerry, better than the iPhone, but not as well as Android. I've used all 3 platforms and the integration with Gmail on BlackBerry is decent. You can perform 90% of the actions on the BlackBerry using the Messages application, that you could normally perform in the Gmail Web interface, all without the use of Google's Gmail App.

I really don't see the point of this post over something so minor.

donkeyman said,
Simple math? Cost of developing Gmail app for BB < Revenue from BB Gmail app users?

That explains no longer developing it, but doesn't explain why they won't allow users to download the app.

Fezmid said,

That explains no longer developing it, but doesn't explain why they won't allow users to download the app.

Because they will also stop supporting the app, too. e.g. If something in the Gmail servers change, the app will look bad when it's not updated anymore.

donkeyman said,
Simple math? Cost of developing Gmail app for BB < Revenue from BB Gmail app users?

its not that simple if you have a competing platform...

This is getting people to abandon blackberry if you use gmail alot..

Lachlan said,

its not that simple if you have a competing platform...

This is getting people to abandon blackberry if you use gmail alot..

Or someone else could just make a new gmail app? Shouldn't BB come with a emial client that supports gmail anyways? Why do you need a specific app from google who likes to just kill things off at any time?