Research in Motion says its 2-year-old BlackBerry App World has crossed the 1 billion app download mark and that a beta version of the app store upgrade is on the way.
The news comes about a week after Apple crowed that its 3-year-old App Store for iPhones and iPads had passed the 15 billion app download mark. Apple crossed the 1.5 billion app download threshold about a year after the App Store opened, but of course that was pre-iPad.
Google recently said its Android Market passed the 4.5 billion app download line.
[BACKGROUND: How RIM is getting left behind]
The beta of BlackBerry App World 3.0 will start later this month and screenshots of it have started to leak out across the BlackBerry blogosphere. A minor update, Version 188.8.131.52, has already started to roll out.
Word of BlackBerry App World hitting the 1 billion app download milestone is a needed dose of good news for RIM, which has had a rough year that has included sliding earnings, product delays and mixed reviews for its PlayBook tablet.
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This story, "RIM: 1 Billion App Downloads Down, 14 Billion to Go to Catch Apple" was originally published by Network World.