The App Store Formerly Known as BlackBerry App World

In today’s mobile news roundup: RIM may license BB10 software; Google blamed for low Nexus 4 supply; Sony announces Xperia Tablet Z; and Apple to hold first 2013 earnings call on Wednesday.

RIM may license BB10 software

Research in Motion CEO Thorsten Heins, has high hopes for the revamped BlackBerry OS, recently hinting at the growing possibilities for the soon-to-be released software.  In an interview with Die Welt, Heins stated that the group’s strategic review could lead to the sale of RIM’s hardware production or the sale of licenses to its BlackBerry 10 software, but the focus is on launching the platform and the smartphones first.

“The main thing for now is to successfully introduce Blackberry 10. Then we’ll see,” Heins was quoted as saying.

In other RIM news, in anticipation of new devices and software to be launched later this month, the company has changed the name of the app store.  Formerly known as BlackBerry App World, RIM’s app store is now known as BlackBerry World.  It’s not a huge change,  but any change in RIM’s world is good, especially this close to the launch of its new device lineup.

BlackBerry World is also the name of RIM’s annual product event, so it looks like the conference is getting a name change too.  It’s nothing new for companies to play around the name of their products and services.  Last year, Google changed the name of Android Marketplace to Google Play as it expanded the array of products and services for its consumers.

But will this rebrand be enough?  Contributing Editor John Casaretto comments on Heins’ statement of his intentions to make BB10 “future-proof” in his appearance on this morning’s NewsDesk segment with Kristin Feledy.

Google blamed for low Nexus 4 supply

The Nexus 4 is doing unbelievably well in the UK, as 10 times more Brits prefer the smartphone than any other Android or iOS phones.  Though this spells success for LG and Google, it seems they are having a hard time keeping up with demand, all fingers pointing to Google.

According to LG France’s Cathy Robin, Google told LG how many handsets to build, and that’s exactly how many were manufactured.  But Google seems to have underestimated the demand for a superior product that doesn’t cost as much as other high-end smartphones.  Consumers from both Germany and Britain have shown intense interest in the device.  Good thing LG is ramping up production.   We can expect more Nexus 4s to hit shelves by February.

Sony announces Xperia Tablet Z

In the battle of the tablets, Sony has unveiled a new handset that claims to be the lightest and thinnest of the bunch.  The Xperia Tablet Z is only 6.9mm-thick and weighs only 495 grams.

Aside from its thin and sleek body, the Xperia Tablet Z features a Qualcomm 1.5GHz quad-core APQ8064 processor, 2GB RAM, 32GB storage, a 10.1-inch 1,920 x 1,200 screen with Mobile Bravia Engine 2, an 8.1MP Exmor R camera, NFC, LTE (MDM9215M radio), microSD expansion, 6,000mAh battery and “S-Force”, Sony’s very own virtual surround sound technology.  The tablet will run Android 4.1 Jelly Bean.

If you’re still not impressed, here’s a curveball – the tablet is both dust and waterproof!  As for the price, nothing has been announced yet, but Japanese consumers can expect the tablet by Spring.

Apple to hold first 2013 earnings call on Wednesday

Apple had been gaining a lot of negative attention since reports surfaced that the company has cut orders for components, facing what appears to be waning demand for the iPhone 5.  It also doesn’t help Apple’s case when reports surfaced that Sharp halted production of the 9.7-inch screens used for Apple’s iPad due to stronger demands for the iPad mini.  Apple’s stock price have gone down as some investors opted to quickly sell their shares.

Apple will report the company’s first earnings call for this year on Wednesday, and investors and analysts will surely keep a close watch as they try to see what the future holds for the company.  Analysts have projected a seven percent year-over-year decline in sales.