RIM launches BBM Social Platform SDKs for BlackBerry Java and WebWorks

Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) rolled out the final version of its BlackBerry Messenger Social Platform SDK 1.0 for BlackBerry Java as well as a corresponding public beta version for BlackBerry WebWorks, enabling developers to build interactive applications that leverage the social discovery and sharing elements of the popular BBM service. The BBM platform now boasts an active worldwide userbase in excess of 45 million per month--RIM aspires to expand user experience beyond messaging and chat tools to encompass multimedia, gaming, location-based services, VoIP, video and commerce solutions, enabling consumers to connect socially as well as share application achievements and content in real time.

RIM issued the public beta version of BBM Social Platform for BlackBerry Beta in March, touting APIs and tools to build permission-based interactive features and test their workflow and integration efforts using special simulators for BlackBerry smartphones running OS versions 5.0 and 6.0. The new SDK 1.0 gives apps the ability to receive invitations from other users who are not on their contact list and send a "join" invite to a user who does not have the app installed. The revamp also tweaks the contact picker UI to enhance selection of multiple contacts and multi-user chat and introduces a new API to identify whether the app is running on the test platform or production platform. Download it here.

The Social Platform SDK 1.0 for BlackBerry WebWorks public beta offers developers the tools to access and update fields in the user's profile like status, avatar and personal message; create custom areas within the user's profile for promoting recent application activity or storing trophies and achievements; and initiate app-to-app background communication through BBM for sending and receiving application instructions, such as moves in a game or any other application state changes. Applications built using the SDK also can give users the flexibility to initiate BBM chats with friends, initiate file transfers and share apps virally with friends in their contact list. The beta SDK also supports on-device testing. Download it here as well.

WebWorks--introduced during the BlackBerry DevCon 2010 conference in September, alongside the BBM Social Platform--enables web developers to create full-featured BlackBerry apps entirely in HTML5, CSS and JavaScript, bringing together existing BlackBerry web development tools along with new resources and platform services. RIM promises access to core BlackBerry features like multitasking, Push technology and Locate services as well as new web APIs and the BlackBerry Web Plug-Ins 2.5, giving developers the flexibility to start their application in the background, the homescreen or a download folder.

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