What, no Instagram or Pandora? The BlackBerry app problem

Crackberry.com, a news hub for BlackBerry loyalists, reported last week that the company and Facebook are preparing an Instagram app for the new operating system.

“It makes sense that they have the major social media apps, and without those, it doesn’t matter how good the hardware is,” said David Tan, assistant professor of strategy at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business. .

Still, Tan said, “There’s a question of what the phone works and what people say about the phone.”

Given that most digital junkies are used to having a full range of apps at their disposal, it could be difficult for BlackBerry to entice subscribers away from Samsung or Apple – and for sellers at retail to present the phone in stores.

“You do not want [missing apps] be the reputation of a new product,” Tan said.

Jennifer Fritzsche, senior analyst at Wells Fargo, pointed out in a recent CNBC interview that Pandora and Spotify — two of the most popular media apps — are missing.

(Watch the video: RIM back to idle? )

For the company, “it almost becomes a ‘chicken-and-egg’ thing in that…if apps come, people probably will.”

(Read more: All the reasons why Blackberry 10 will fail : analyst)

Some point out that Android smartphones did not offer all the main applications when they were first released.

However, BlackBerry has the distinct disadvantage of trying to shed a Rodney Dangerfield image that has cost it market share to Apple and Samsung over the years.

Analysts say this backdrop makes it difficult for a new BlackBerry to hit the market without the same bells and whistles as its competitors, especially when US customers won’t be able to get their hands on the new device until mid-March. .

“Given that BlackBerry is trying to make a splash in a heavily concentrated market… not being on par with the other two major players is going to make it difficult,” Tan said.

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