Action Creations

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Quick Facts

  • Winner of the 2012 AT&T® Mobile App Hackathon for their Action X-Ray app
  • Develop using BlackBerry® WebWorks™, Adobe® ActionScript®, Adobe® Flash, and the Adobe® AIR® runtime environment
  • BlackBerry® Alliance Elite Member

BlackBerry Developer Success Story — Action Creations

As someone who teaches user interface (UI) design and programming courses at the University of California, San Diego, Demian Borba knows a thing or two about developing eye-catching, easy-to-use applications. That ingenuity was front and center during the 2012 AT&T Mobile App Hackathon at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas with his Action X-Ray app for the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet.

Demian, founder and CEO of Action Creations, has generally focused on cross-platform development, but has found that an increasing number of high profile clients are interested in BlackBerry PlayBook tablet apps. The Brazilian developer has also maintained a solid presence in his native South America with his company’s applications deployed by several local enterprises.

We caught up with Demian and he explained why Action Creations likes working with Research In Motion® (RIM®) development tools, how the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet app market offers untapped potential, and the importance of working closely with the teams at RIM.

Q: Why did you decide to develop apps for the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet?

Demian: Our company focuses on cross-platform development so we have experience developing for a number of tablets. We prefer working with BlackBerry WebWorks, Adobe ActionScript and Adobe Flash because for us it’s simpler than developing with Objective-C or Java®. Definitely from our experience, the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet was best suited for Adobe based apps, in terms of performance and speed. The processing on the device is fast, and RIM offers a ton of free frameworks and API’s within the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet SDK to help create exactly what you want.

Q: How does the market for BlackBerry PlayBook tablet apps differ from other platforms?

Demian: We saw a big opportunity with the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet market because it’s not as saturated as competitor tablet markets, most of which are full of free, low quality apps. In those markets, there are plenty of apps that aren’t designed with the quality we feel is necessary. Not to mention there are so many applications that do the exact same thing and have no real differentiators.

Also BlackBerry World™ storefront doesn’t have the deluge of apps and we see that as a great opportunity to target a new, growing platform where our technology works very well. It’s a largely unexplored market and whoever gets there first will benefit hugely from it.

Q: How has the support you’ve received from RIM compare to other platforms?

Demian: For Adobe and increasingly more with HTML 5 development, there are huge online communities that are eager to help. With regards to specific BlackBerry development questions the people at RIM and their communities have been great.

We’ve had a number of instances where we’ve been able to directly contact the RIM team for help with specific questions. That support has extended to other initiatives we’ve started, like Flash Camp Brazil, a conference that targets developers, designers, and students.

No matter what the question or problem, you can easily find someone willing to help within the RIM team. You just don’t get that same attention with the other OEM’s or OS providers.

Q: Tell us about your premise behind the winning app and your experience at the 2012 AT&T Mobile App Hackathon.

Demian: While driving to the event from San Diego, we noticed that one of the requirements was to use the m-Health API set out by AT&T. Having received so many injures from surfing over the years, and with social media being so important these days, we came up with the idea of documenting an injury while at the same time bragging about it by way of the community integrated within the app. Doctors can also use the application to help diagnose the injury and recommend treatments.

It was very exciting to be a part of the 2012 AT&T Mobile App Hackathon. We chose Adobe AIR to develop the app with because of the visual impact we wanted the app to have. The Hackathon lasted about seven hours and really proved just how quick it is to develop an app for the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. Although it was a prototype app, two people were able to design and develop a high quality and high functioning application. I think the skeleton graphic itself would have been nearly impossible to develop on any other platform in that timeframe.

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