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BlackBerry recruiting Android apps for BB10, report says

BlackBerry is seeking to seduce Android apps onto BlackBerry phones, say reports.

BlackBerry is seeking to seduce Android apps onto BlackBerry phones, with reports suggesting the struggling smart phone company is sounding out the developers behind apps made for the rival Google Play store. 

Good e-reader reports that several developers attending the recent CES technology trade show in Las Vegas confided they have been approached by BlackBerry to stick their existing Android apps into the BlackBerry World online app shop.

Reports suggest that BlackBerry is smoothing the way for Android apps to cross the park by issuing a firmware update that allows BlackBerry 10 phones to run actual Android apps. As such, developers don't have to completely rebuild the apps for BB10, just upload the Android app and some relevant information to the app store.

How much impact that'll have on BlackBerry's fortunes remains to be seen: the number of people owning BB10 phones like the Z30, Z10, Q5 or Q10 is disappointingly low, the struggling company still selling more of its older phones -- which can't run Android apps -- than new, BB10 models.

A paucity of apps compared to Android and Apple -- the so-called 'app gap' -- is a problem afflicting both BlackBerry and Windows Phone, as well as potential rivals such as Ubuntu or Firefox OS. Microsoft has the luxury of throwing money at the problem, increasingly recruiting big name apps to the Windows Phone app store.

On top of that, Windows Phone is growing, giving developers a genuine incentive to get on board. By contrast, BlackBerry is in trouble, perhaps leaving developers wondering if it's worth committing to apps for a platform that's on its way out.

BlackBerry has yet to respond to my request for comment.

Will Android apps transform BlackBerry's fortunes? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page.