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BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha Thorsten Heins

RIM is busy holding its two-day BlackBerry Jam Asia event in Bangkok, Thailand, and while only day one is done so far, the the company has already made some noteworthy announcements. First up, RIM has revealed that its BlackBerry App World storefront is being rebranded to BlackBerry World. The change is meant to reflect the fact that the marketplace will offer music and video content with the launch of BlackBerry 10.

RIM also announced the third handset in its line of BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha devices. After the full-touch Dev Alpha A and B, RIM plans to offer the Dev Alpha C with a physical keyboard. There aren't many details about the device itself yet, but interested developers can improve their odds of snagging one by becoming one of the top 1,500 people to submit two or more apps. The top 1,500 will be chosen using a point system based on the type of apps submitted by a person, and existing Dev Alpha A/B owners and BlackBerry Elite Members can also earn an extra 200 points.

Finally, developers that've been using a Dev Alpha device to test out their BlackBerry 10 apps can now register to be eligible to trade that test unit in for a limited edition, fully-functional BlackBerry 10 smartphone. Like the Dev Alpha C, the details of this special handset are a mystery, but devs that want to apply for a phone must do so by January 31, 2013 and must also have an app submitted and approved on BlackBerry World.

We're still a couple of months out from the BlackBerry 10 launch event, but RIM is keeping itself busy by prepping both itself and its developers for the arrival of its new operating system. The news of the Dev Alpha C and limited edition BlackBerry 10 device is interesting for developers, and I'm sure that there are many folks that are eager to try out a Dev Alpha unit with a physical keyboard, especially with the recent leaks that've teased an upcoming QWERTY device.

The most consumer-facing news of today is the rebranding of RIM's app and content storefront. The name BlackBerry World seems like an improvement over the lengthier BlackBerry App World, even if the market does now share a name with a major RIM event. As we get closer to the debut of BlackBerry 10 and RIM continues to prepare itself and customers for its arrival, how many of you are getting excited about the new OS?

Via CrackBerry, @BlackBerryDev, RIM


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