BlackBerry signals interest in Kenya

BlackBerry Partners Fund has invited Kenyan techies to take part in the BlackBerry Developer Challenge beginning Aug. 19.

With a vibrant mobile phone service consumer base, the fund is interested in furthering BlackBerry use in Kenya and seeks the input of Kenyan developers, said Charlene Maina, technical product manager of BlackBerry maker Research In Motion.

"I have what some may call a naïve belief that Kenya is a haven of untapped potential," Maina said. "Look around at Kenyans making it in the diaspora: I am a firm believer that restrictions of the mind result in restrictions in performance. I am hoping that my belief that a compelling idea can come from Kenya will fuel the right developer to see beyond themselves as a Kenyan developer and more as a developer who the world is demanding a service from."

The BlackBerry Developer Challenge is intended to increase the awareness of cutting-edge applications on BlackBerry and encourage developers from around the world to showcase their applications.

The challenge is broken down into five categories: most innovative game, most innovative multimedia application, most innovative personal productivity application, most innovative enterprise application and most innovative Web application.

All applications for the contest must be submitted by Sept. 30. Three finalists will be selected for each category, and finalists will be notified on Oct. 1.

Developer challenges are always a great way to get developers involved, add better applications to a product and increase sales, said Wilfred Mworia, a software developer who won the Nairobi Facebook Developer Garage competition this year.

"I think the cool thing about BlackBerry, it is more open. One can develop using multiple languages on multiple platforms," he added.

This story, "BlackBerry signals interest in Kenya" was originally published by IDG News Service .

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